PWC | THE ISLE OF MAN SHOULD TAKE ACTION NOW TO BE A DIGITALLY ENABLED ECONOMY| OCTOBER 2020

In a new piece of thought leadership titled: Upskilling the Isle of Man’s workforce for a digital world, PwC Isle of Man calls for the government, employers and educators to work together to take decisive action and ensure the Island’s workforce is equipped to be a digitally enabled economy.

Date: Monday 05 October 2020

In a new piece of thought leadership titled: Upskilling the Isle of Man’s workforce for a
digital world, PwC Isle of Man calls for the government, employers and educators to work
together to take decisive action and ensure the Island’s workforce is equipped to be a
digitally enabled economy.


Calling attention to the need for workforce transformation the thought leadership report looks
at the thousands of new and higher value jobs which can be created in the next 15 years, but
warns that this transformation could potentially put existing jobs at risk between now and
2035, through improvements in technology namely automation and Artificial Intelligence (AI).


Ferran Munoz-Lopez, Partner at PwC Isle of Man, commented:

Ferran Munoz-Lopez


“Automation inevitably creates apprehension, however we must understand the impact
technology plays in our future, whether that be opportunities or threats and the skills needed
to respond. COVID-19 has accelerated the adoption of technology forcing workforce
transformation into sharp focus and is a must for the Island to position itself well for the
future. We must focus on the skills rather than the job, as future jobs whatever the industry
and role are likely to have a tech component to understand and work with.”


A series of key findings are identified:
• 32.5 %* of jobs are potentially at risk from automation in the Isle of Man between now
and 2035, equating to 16,000 jobs
• Financial Services will be the most disrupted sector, with most disruption taking place
between 2025-30
• COVID-19 has accelerated the adoption of technology, bringing the issue of
workforce transformation into sharper focus
• The younger generation and the low paid/low skilled will be the most impacted,
intensifying the need to develop new skills to enhance their employability
• Across the three automation waves between now and 2035, as many new and higher
value jobs can be created, but this depends on what action is taken now
A route forward is outlined with key steps required from government, employers and
educators to respond and support digital upskilling on the Isle of Man. The cost of upskilling
is estimated to be six times lower than the ultimate economic cost of redundancies, periods
out of work, needing to retrain whilst out of work before re-entering the workforce.


Ferran Munoz-Lopez added:


“The Isle of Man has taken the first step in the journey by recognising workforce
transformation as an immediate imperative in the government's economic recovery
programme, identifying the need to work with industry to develop reskilling and upskilling
programmes as an essential investment in Our People. Combined with some excellent
initiatives from the Digital Isle of Man Agency the Island is in a good position to ramp up the
scale of pace and change now. With the right skills, agility and readiness to embrace change,
this could be a once-in-a-generation opportunity.”


Suggested actions to support digital upskilling in the Isle of Man are:


• A digital upskilling taskforce combining government, employers and educators to lead
the response with a cohesive plan, which progress is tracked against
• Fiscal stimulus to support the jobs market and upskilling incentives
• Strategic workforce planning to help employers identify the emerging skills of the
future and collaborate with the educators to make these part of the curricula
• A business led approach to create quality work experience, continued education, jobs
and apprenticeships for young people
• A strategic commitment to lifelong learning at government level, supported by
industries, to invest in the skills of the future


Paul Jones, Partner at PwC Isle of Man commented:


“PwC has invested in a global ‘New world. New skills.’ programme and our upskilling journey
has started. Over the next few years, we will be making a major investment in building the
‘digital fitness’ of our people, and in technologies for supporting clients and the programmes
to support our community.”


The full thought leadership report is available to download at: www.pwc.com/im/en/upskillingnew-world-new-skills/upskilling-isle-of-man-digital-world.html


* How we arrive at 32.5% - We applied a PwC model, supported by OECD data, which
analyses the breakdown of common jobs by tasks and then identifies which of these tasks,
and therefore the percentage of roles, could be automated through improvements in
technology. We then used the latest working population figures from the government to
forecast the workforce make up over the coming decade.