The British Computing Society (BCS) has been urged to revamp its strategy for supporting the UK's IT professionals, or accept that it no longer has a place in today's industry.
IT training firm Firebrand claimed that 91 per cent of IT professionals are unaware of the BCS Chartered IT Professional (CITP) accreditation scheme.
"It is an open secret that, in its current form, the BCS has no real connection with the UK's IT community or those looking to start a career in IT, " said Robert Chapman, chief executive at Firebrand Training.
"The BCS has reached a crossroads. It must either continue as an academic organisation viewed as fusty and irrelevant by the majority of IT professionals, or overhaul its objectives to help revitalise the industry and bring in more new members."
Firebrand reckons that the BCS needs to overhaul its entire strategy, starting with a name change, and lose its image as an academic organisation and become more of an advisory network.
However, the BCS has vigorously defended its relevance in today's IT market.
"As the chartered body for the IT profession, the BCS has been working alongside industry and government towards creating a clear and relevant framework for IT training and qualification accreditations," the organisation said in a statement.
The BCS claims that CITP remains an integral part of its IT initiatives and that its endeavours have been recognised and endorsed by more than 140 companies and government departments which have signed up for corporate membership.
The organisation has also been working with other professional bodies, including the Institution of Engineering and Technology which can confer CITP status on its own eligible members.
"Our decision to make CITP much more widely available is a major step for the BCS and an unprecedented step for a chartered body," said BCS chief executive David Clarke.
"However, our trustees have taken this decision in the interests of the profession and see it as an important step towards achieving the aims of the BCS professionalism programme."
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