Every business is now a tech business - Paramjit Uppal

Digital growth has been accelerated by the demands of the global pandemic as companies of all shapes and sizes have relied on technology more than ever for business continuity and innovation to better understand and engage with customers.

Paramjit Uppal, Founder and CEO AND Digital
Paramjit Uppal, Founder and CEO AND Digital

Keeping up with the pace of acceleration for digital solutions and products – and ensuring there is tech talent with the skills to match this level of output – remains a critical challenge.

Unsurprisingly, the drive to increase digital capabilities has led to an unprecedented demand for digital skills. This gap in capabilities and skills is not new, however. It has been a challenge for more than a decade, but due to the combined need for speed and growth, it is now holding back companies from building agility in their teams which is required to realise their digital ambitions. What can companies do to act now?

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The digital skills gap is more than tech skills. At AND Digital, we have identified a unique set of attributes that organisations need to adopt to make meaningful progress. Implementing agile ways of working, embedding a digital-first culture and providing talent with continuous learning opportunities, are some of the ground rules.

The drive is on for digital skills

When we started AND Digital in 2014, we set about understanding and distilling the essence of what determines success in our increasingly fast-paced, technology-driven world. Since then, we have purposefully implemented the patterns, ways of operating, capabilities and mindset to build and scale.

We believe every business is now a tech business, with software and data at its core. However, tech alone is not enough, it is still a human activity. We believe businesses need their own people to innovate, successfully compete and delight their customers. That’s why we work very hard to build and nurture a mindset and capabilities to enable high performance. This investment in people has delivered great speed and agility for us.

This knowledge and strategic approach is what we apply to clients, working with them to accelerate their immediate digital needs and supporting them in building their in-house capabilities. This is all in the face of the well-publicised challenge of the ‘digital skills gap’ which is front and centre of our concerns.

Our approach, therefore, is all about collaboration. When we build teams, we build them with our clients. It is a shared commitment to a shared problem, when the right patterns, culture and mindsets are harnessed. What’s more, there is no better way for clients to access these for themselves than by working and doing so alongside us.

The ‘digital skills gap’ is an often-misunderstood topic. To some commentators, the skills gap is specifically about coding or data skills, or STEM. To others, it is purely an expression of not having enough people to complete tasks in the short term. However people understand it, the gap is broadly accepted to be widening.

For us, it is about having that essential skill mix, mindset, and the right practices in place. It’s these vital attributes that we actively encourage and support our clients to adopt. Digital transformation holds the promise of greater business agility through people. Make the investment in your people and your business will successfully grow. It takes time and commitment, but it’s very worthwhile.

Paramjit Uppal, Founder and CEO AND Digital is speaking at DIGIT Leader 2022 on 28th April at Dynamic Earth www.and.digital

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