UK IT Pros Fail to Meet CIO Hiring Expectations

February 7, 2017

The skill sets of IT professionals in the UK don't live up to the expectations of Chief Information Officers (CIOs) and IT directors, new research from Robert Half Technology has revealed. Nearly three-quarters (74%) of UK CIOs and IT directors are frequently faced with IT candidates who are not able to meet the skill level required for the role they are applying for.

When asked how they benchmark candidates’ skills, UK CIOs and IT directors stated they are most likely to rely on qualifications/certifications (61%) and years of experience (60%). Surprisingly, only 38% of UK CIOs and IT directors use any form of standardised skills testing before making a job offer.

100 UK CIOs and IT directors were asked: “When hiring a new staff member on your IT team, how do you benchmark the skill-level or competency of candidates?”

Measurement of skill-level

Percentage of CIOs & IT directors



Years of experience


Examples of previous work


Standardised skills testing


Previous job testing




Source: Robert Half.

*Multiple responses permitted

Neil Owen, Director, Robert Half Technology commented: “The rate of technological change combined with the digital evolution of business today is exacerbating the current IT skills shortage in the UK. The pace of hiring to support business growth, digital transformation and IT security challenges, while using the latest software and systems to meet best-practice standards is seeing IT professionals continually needing to upskill. 
“To cope, many businesses are needing to reassess their hiring requirements, considering the ‘need to have’ and ‘nice to have’ skill sets alongside cultural fit. Finding high-potential candidates who can be trained and mentored to company specifications will be a key strategy for surviving – and thriving – in the technology war for talent.”

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