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back to article UK has enough sheep shearers, needs more coders

Positions in Britain's IT sector are still going to homegrown workers, according to the UK Border Agency, although software developers and graphic designers are needed to produce visual effects and 2D/3D computer animation for film, TV and video games. The agency has drawn up a new list of occupations (PDF) that have a shortage …

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Joke

it's my puerile sense of humour again ...

"Positions in Britain's IT sector are still going to homegrown workers"

you say that like it's a bad thing

"skilled ... boners" I can feel a CV update coming on - Ding-dong!

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Happy

I think we need

frozen telephone sanitisers, hairdressers, and advertising account executive as well, so that we can fill up one of those ships they're building somewhere in the Himalayans...

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Yag
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Simpler to drain other countries of their assets than to invest in education and decent wages...

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And in the long run you end up funding a million unemployed 16-24 year olds who haven't been taught any relevant skills.

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Anonymous Coward

looks like we've still got enough hovercraft pilots (they was a shortage of these in the first list) so my ideas of a career switch to piloting hovercraft will have to stay on hold for at least another 6 months

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Anonymous Coward

Hardly surprising

>secondary school science teachers

At a guess I would say that most science teachers are likely to be male and given that teaching is now an anti-male environment it's hardly surprising there is a shortage of such teachers.

I could easily fill such a post but for two reasons. 1.) I will not subject myself to a CRB check even though I have nothing relevant to hide. 2:) I wouldn't be allowed to smack the oiks round the head when disrupting class.

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Why do we need secondary school science teachers?

I thought we stopped teaching sciences in secondary school years ago. (Sciences are hard, some students might fail and bring down the school's grade point average.)

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Hardly surprising

"I wouldn't be allowed to smack the oiks round the head when disrupting class."

You don't have to disrupt class. That's the oiks' job.

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Ru
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Headmaster

"grade point average"

You don't sound like a product of or a participant in the British educational system.

This is a local curriculum for local people. We'll have no Americanisms here.

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Happy

I can I can't

"He covets the precious things of the school"

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WTF?

Double take ...

"The agency also noted a shortage in the film, TV and video games sectors"

what !!!!! With all the Media Studies graduates I've seen over the years ????

Hang on ...

"which need more animators, software engineers and R&D software engineers as well as system engineers for special effects."

Ah, they need people who can actually *do* something. That figures.

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WTF?

What a surprise

that sheep shearers are not required in the winter!

I'll bet they appear on the list again next March.

Having seen some of the specialist sheep shearers from the antipodes, I'm not surprised that they are required. I've never seen anybody work so hard for so long as some of these guys. 8 hours or more with minimal breaks, averaging a sheep every 2-3 minutes or so, often for six days a week.

What they do is take two to three years travelling around the world from country to country as each reaches their spring. They work their bollocks off while spending almost nothing on accommodation. They earn a pile of money, which they then go back home with as the buy-in stake for a farm or ranch.

While I've seen some good UK based shearers, there are not that many, and certainly not enough for the number of sheep in this country.

I dispute the graphics designers, though. My daughter got told that the number of UK graphics students that get jobs in Graphic Design after completing their course is only a small fraction of the total. More like graphics agencies don't want the tedious job of breaking in inexperienced graduates when it is easier to recruit experienced workers from abroad. I cry Shame! on this and all past governments for not encouraging people trying to take the first step on the ladder. There really is no shortage!

I'm sure that the same must be true for software developers, although I do question the value of some of the computer and IT courses that run in this country.

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needs more coders??

well if they paid them more than the bloke that cleans the shears they might just attract them.

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Re:- needs more coders??

Good point well made. Also if there was actually a place the prospective coder could go which actually lists live and valid opportunities, (without the whole "agency" trawl coming into the mix), that would be just peachy.

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Plenty of coders kicking around, although most of the ones i work with aren't allowed to code anymore. They are all relegated to babysitting Indians and reviewing their code.

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Devil

Environmental "scientists"

They aren't scientists. They're poor biologists and dubious geologists with no numeracy skills. Never hiring one of those again.

(Ok I'm sure some of them are brilliant, top of their field, etc. But the environmental science courses taught at our major universities just seem to be full of biology rejects with a hard time committing to one subject.)

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Unhappy

The reason we don't need any more shearers is that the government and multinationals are already doing a fine job of shearing the sheeple

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Anonymous Coward

Irony

I had to switch to a software testing role instead of a developer role because there weren't enough jobs for coders...

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FAIL

Shortage of coders????

hello!!! unemployed coder here!!!

I get really ipsed off by these reports of "we need to import coders" wailing and gnashing when I've been spending years and years trying to get somebody to actually pay me to use my skills.

(ps: I'm not actually unemployed any more, I'm now a tester, maliciously doing everything I can to break the code. I'm on a break now because I've crashed the server....)

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Holmes

I'm not surprised there's a skills shortage in this country. I have the curious situation of escaping the education system not all that long ago (did my A levels about a decade ago) and now watching my kid sister go into the further ed system.

I note a curious discrepancy in skills between me at her age and her - and given the shared environment at home I can only conclude that the education standard is dropping; things that were 'advanced but still within GCSE level' are now firmly AS or higher level. They're teaching to the exams, not teaching the skills and knowledge that are really that useful.

I remember my computing A level, too, since that's relevant here. Now, I rocked up knowing multiple languages, I wouldn't say I was a genius coder at the time (and have grown enormously in skill in the last 10 years) but the fact I could build something that worked in more than one language and understood the concepts being discussed wasn't commonplace, it was outright extraordinary. The people in my class weren't stupid by any means, but it wasn't exactly a high passing grade - and if that was then, I dread to think what's being taught now.

So, yeah, there's the reason for the skills shortage: we're not teaching the skills domestically any more.

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Happy

Biology Teachers?

We're awash with them in the US (at least California). They end up teaching "science" because of the shortage of specialist Physics and Chemistry teachers.

>This is a local curriculum for local people. We'll have no Americanisms here.

The UK's been copying all the worst characteristics of the US educational system for at least a generation. There's probably naff metrics like the GPA in there somewhere.

>I had to switch to a software testing role instead of a developer role because there weren't enough jobs for coders...

Bit of a sore point, that. I'm one of the old school that thinks that testing one's code is an integral part of writing it. Its not very popular among many of the coders because testing can be more intricate and time consuming than actually writing one's masterwork but that, as they say, is showbiz. I have particularly strong feelings about coders who feel that testing is a job reserved for the lower echelons.....

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Vic
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> I'm one of the old school that thinks that testing one's code is an integral part of writing it.

I'm one of the old school that disagrees with you here.

If you've misunderstood the spec when coding it, you'll probably repeat the mistake when writing the unit tests. So your tests will pass, but your code will be incorrect.

I prefer coders to test each others' work; whilst I agree that testing should not be considered a lesser task than bashing out LoC, I like to see different people doing each job for a particular task, with the roles reversed on another task.

Vic.

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@Vic & @Martin

I agree with both of you.

Coders should test their own code, then it should be tested by someone else.

Time consuming, in the beginning, but saves money in the long run.

I've found hat loads of problems in my own code writing tests, and other have found problems later during their tests. Win WIn.

Also found test driven development to be an interesting approach. Writing the test first can give great insights in to how to implement the actual code.

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Pint

@Testers

Interesting points.

I've found that the best testers simply have a different mindset than is common in development.

Programmers tend to like making things. This doesn't always fit well with shaking bugs out of software, either their own or someone elses.

The best testers are malicious bastards that take great pleasure in pushing a million items of data into something that was specced for 10k and gleefully reporting that it fell over.

The world needs all kinds.

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Java Programmer != Software Professional...

With the current education system seemingly designed to spew out "Java Programmers" at graduate level, finding people who can "code" these days is getting harder and harder.

/sigh

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They stopped pushing out Java a long time ago, largely it was still a challenge getting everyone through, I think .NET is the new platform of choice, it has VB for those that struggle with a more typical code structure.

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Coat

Code for the UK.

Live in India.

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Anonymous Coward

If there's a shortage in the games industry...

... that'll be because corporatisation has reduced the once creative art of games programming to little more than slavery.

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Pirate

No title mwahahahahaha :P

I work for a software house in edinburgh (real industry, not banking btw)... we're in dire need of c++ coders with pengiun preferences...

note: i dont code, I break stuff in the field!

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That would not be Concept Systems, would it?

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Coat

oh, /shearers/.

Sorry, as you were.

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Coat

BEAN COUNTERS are you listening ????

There is a shortage of coders! PAY MORE!!

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Anonymous Coward

Damian Green is a cock

Ends.

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