The ICT sector is currently the main driver of the Catalan economy, as shown by data such as companies and jobs creation and the growth and turnover predictions of the 'Technology Sector Barometer in Catalonia'. In terms of balance, the Barometer confirms that not only have the predictions for 2018 been met, but they have been exceeded. 72% of the Catalan ICT companies ended 2019 better than the previous year and 29% of them have even increased their turnover by 5%.
In addition, predictions for 2020, in the context of COVID-19 crisis, show that ICT companies are more resilient than those in other sectors. 40% of ICT companies expect a 2020 turnover higher than in 2019. 17% of these companies predict that this increase will be above 5%, while 8% of them believe that it will range from 2.5% to 5%.
However, the Barometer warns that the lack of talent in the ICT sector could impede the competitiveness of companies. About 70% of ICT companies would increase their turnover if a higher number of trained professionals were available. If the previous edition of the Barometer already warned that the sector needs could not be met without addressing the challenge of talent, this year's edition confirms talent is an inseparable element of the progress of the sector.
These are some of the conclusions of the twelfth edition of the 'Technology Sector Barometer in Catalonia' carried out by Technological Circle of Catalonia (CTecno), an indicator that collects the perceptions and assessments of a representative sample of the Catalan business network presented this morning by the Minister of Digital Policy and Public Administration of the Catalan Government, Jordi Puigneró, the Commissioner for Digital Innovation of Barcelona City Council, Michael Donaldson, and the President of CTecno, Joan Ramon Barrera.
"Barometer data confirm that the ICT sector is one of the key sectors in the country: during the last 5 years, no other sector of the Catalan economy has grown in employment as much as this sector", said the Minister Jordi Puigneró during the presentation of the report. "We already knew the importance of digitalization in the economy, added Puigneró, but the pandemic has involved the visibility of the ICT sector: it has shown that digital transformation is an essential process for any country in order to face the challenges of the future”. Therefore, the Minister concluded, "the role of the administration is to accelerate this digitization and, above all, to ensure that no one is left behind".
Regarding the presence of women in the ICT sector, the Barometer still shows the shortage of female talent in the field of technology. Therefore, despite having grown slightly compared to the previous edition and the work done in this field, the presence of female talent in technical job positions is still not enough, consisting of only 8.60%, which is a slight increase over last year (7.9%).
Another relevant fact the Barometer includes is the essential role of ICT in the promotion of telework. 80% of professionals in ICT companies telework. This figure shows the advantage ICTs have in terms of ensuring the continuity of work and the turnover of these companies.
Catalan ICT business network is evaluated at 6.54 points out of 10, maintaining the levels reached in recent years despite the current context of crisis. Clearly, structural improvements still need to be implemented in order to enable a qualitative leap in the sector.
In this sense, the Barometer is committed to a close collaboration between the company and the public administration as a key element to the process of digitalization of the country and influence talent creation policies. Also, this year's edition of the Barometer shows the importance of promoting innovation in public procurement, infrastructures and new technologies.
You can read the full ICT Barometer 2020 here.