CIO East Africa (Nairobi)

Africa: Cisco to Address IT Skills Gap in Asia Pacific.

Cisco will invest in the development of 400,000 networking professionals over the next five years, to help address the IT skills shortage in Asia Pacific.

Cisco made this commitment at the launch of the Internet of Everything Webinar Series designed to inspire the next generation of IT talent to pursue careers in the industry.

The IDC study, which was commissioned by Cisco, states that by 2016, there will be a skills gap of over 400,000 networking professionals across the region, which will represent a segment of the two million unfilled ICT-related jobs globally within ten years. Without investment in skills, technology progress will not translate into productivity growth and Asia Pacific will not be able to compete in an increasingly knowledge-based global economy. According to Bastiaan Toeset, Managing Director for Cisco's Customer Led business in Asia Pacific, Japan and Greater China, "Today, the Internet has a powerful impact on changing lives. Cisco powers the human network to create and support social innovation that improves the lives and opportunities of people across the region. We take a 'shared value' approach to addressing social issues, and focus on applying our unique technology expertise to create strategic, relevant and sustainable programs and partnerships."

Over the next 10 months, the webinar series, which is available to all Networking Academy students, will cover various aspects of the Internet of Everything and the career opportunities it offers. The series will be a combination of both in-person and virtual utilizing Cisco's collaboration technologies such as Cisco TelePresence, Cisco WebEx and Cisco TV.

Based on Cisco's projection of 10 billion "connections" today to 50 billion by 2020, knowledge-based jobs will become more pervasive in an Internet of Everything-driven world. As the Internet of Everything drives the transformation alongside next-generation and tech-savvy workers, job creation techniques will evolve.

According to a recent study published by the World Bank, the information and communication technologies (ICT) sector is rapidly growing, with an addressable market of $800 billion globally.Recognizing this projection, Cisco is committed to meeting the critical demand for high-skill workers through strategic programs and collaborations for current and future generations.

To support talent enablement in key areas and reduce this growing skills gap, Learning@Cisco, along with its partners, will deliver a new portfolio, consisting of IT curricula, assessments and an upcoming Cisco Specialist Certification to advance skills development in industrial networking. This training and certification initiative, introduced at the Internet of Things World Forum, will help meet the growing need for specialized talent that can provide Internet Protocol (IP) networking expertise, with a focus in automation, manufacturing and energy and future expansion to include equally transformative industries.

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