The vast majority of IT managers in the UK believe that inadequate levels of government investment are preventing British companies from competing effectively in the global technology market.
Nearly 70 per cent of respondents to a survey by the British Computer Society (BCS) feel that government investment in the IT sector is inadequate or not applied efficiently.
The poll of 319 UK IT managers, conducted between June and August 2004, found that good professional skills, a focus on security technology, and strong investment are deemed essential factors to boost the nation's competitiveness.
"These findings underscore how important it is to recognise British companies which are setting standards in developing leading-edge technology or encouraging the development of well-honed technical and business skills," said BCS chief executive David Clarke in a statement.
IT investment priorities in the next 12 months include, according to the study, security products (26 per cent), application software (20 per cent) and personal (mobile) computing products (11 per cent) such as laptops and PDAs.
IT budgets for 2005 are largely expected to remain the same as last year (34 per cent) or increase by up to 15 per cent (32 per cent). But 17 per cent of respondents reported that their budgets will decrease in the next year.
Commenting on the skills aspect of the study Richard Lloyd, director of IT recruitment at Robert Walters, said in a statement: "Professional skills are the IT industry's lifeblood - it cannot exist without them and poor skills inhibits its performance.
"Additionally, professional development ensures that individuals are challenged and stretched and open to new ways of thinking that benefits their businesses and the industry."
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