Middle East dealing with shortage of IT experts

A new survey has found that businesses in the Middle East are struggling to find qualified candidates to fill a growing number of IT jobs.

The CompTIA International Technology Adoption and Workforce Issues study found that 62 percent of executives in the Middle East plan to increase their IT workforces this year. However, the report also found that 85 percent of those businesses are faced with a severe skills shortage in the regional labor market, CFO World reported.

"In many cases, skills gaps are a natural feature of the IT industry because of the high speed of innovation, but in fast-growing markets such as the Middle East, this issue is more prominent,"  John McGlinchey, vice president of Europe and the Middle East, CompTIA, said.

According to the report, the skills employers are looking for most include help desk and IT support, storage and data back up, cloud computing and mobile application development.

Meanwhile, in Oman, the world's largest business software company, SAP, is trying to tackle the IT skills gap problem through a partnership with the country's Information Technology Authority (ITA). The new graduate training initiative will include hands-on project experience to for prospective IT consultants that will encompass a broad range of industry issues such as negotiation, "design thinking" and conflict management, the Times of Oman reported.