Artificial intelligence and machine learning have been identified as the most important areas organisations must develop staff skills in, but most admit they are struggling to find staff with the right expertise to fulfill these roles.
According to the Institute of Direct & Digital Marketing’s "Business Skills Census 2019", AI and machine learning were found to be available within 45% of organisations, yet 64% stated that these skills would be important to the future success of their organisations, revealing a substantial skills gap (19%) within this survey.
Furthermore, 87% state that developing skills in AI and machine learning is vital to their organisation’s current success, a finding which the IDM insists highlights the urgency with which businesses will have to address this knowledge gap if they hope to succeed.
The IDM’s "Professional Skills Census 2018", which focused on marketers’ own abilities, also highlighted that AI and machine learning had the biggest skills gap, with a 25% difference between perceived importance between marketers’ current roles and for future career progression.
According to a 2017 analysis from jobs site Indeed, the number of roles in AI has risen by 485% in the UK since 2014, and there are twice as many jobs requiring AI and machine learning skills as there are applicants.
DMA head of insight Tim Bond said: "Future-proofing a business requires a commitment to supporting the development of knowledge, workers and their ability to take advantage of technology in the form of AI in particular.
"As data and marketing intelligence continues to transform the way businesses communicate with customer, the demand for marketers that are equipped with an ever-expanding skillset will increase. In the not-too-distant future, businesses and their marketing teams will need to be equally proficient in analytics, creative thinking and AI integration."