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Girls STEM

Welcome to your round up of some of the past week’s most interesting surveys, statistics and reports relevant to those involved in the UK tech industry.

This week, we have statistics relating to UK tech salaries, the sharing economy, perceptions of STEM subjects within schools, the future of FinTech in banking and much more.

Salaries and talent

Hired’s “2017 State of Global Tech Salaries” report has revealed UK tech salaries are among the lowest in the world.

In London, the average UK tech salary stands at £56,000. The only countries where tech workers make less than this are France and Singapore.

Additionally, when factoring in the costs of living, London tech workers are still making 25% less than their counterparts in San Francisco, and 30% less than those in New York.

The report also discovered that the UK’s tech scene is highly reliant on foreign tech talent, with 27% of individuals joining the UK tech sector coming from outside the UK.

Sharing economy

Predictions from PwC have indicated the UK’s sharing economy sectors could see transactions grow by 60%, or £8bn, in 2017.

Additionally, the predictions show Europe could experience the same growth (60%) within the sharing economy sectors in 2017, which is the equivalent of around €27bn.

By 2025, PwC also projects total UK transactions within the sharing economy could reach £140bn, up from an estimation of £7bn in 2015 and £13bn in 2016.

Rob Vaughan, economist at PwC, commented: “Innovation will remain crucial to success in the sharing economy. A number of established players branched out into new service offerings in 2016 and we expect them to invest significantly in these this year.

“The success of these new services will be an acid test of whether sharing economy platforms can eventually become the established leaders of their markets, or will forever be known as the ‘disruptors’,” he added.

Director knowledge

A survey of 250 company directors by CompanyHelp has highlighted a lack of knowledge among directors of UK Ltd companies.

Some 60% of directors were found to lack a proper understanding of the directors loan account, while 36% of directors incorrectly said if they own a Ltd company, its money is theirs.

Similarly, over 26% of directors incorrectly said that Ltd company protects them from all debt liability, and 47% also said they didn’t know the quick cash flow or balance sheet tests to determine if a company is insolvent.

Andy Clay, spokesperson for CompanyHelp, said: “This data is actually quite shocking when laid out plainly for all to see. Whilst for those of us involved in the insolvency business the issues of overdrawn loan accounts and wrongful trading are an everyday occurrence, it is clear there is a problem here which needs to be addressed.

“For such high numbers of UK Directors to not have basic understandings of corporate governance is alarming, especially if business takes a downturn.”

STEM in schools

Accenture’s “Girls in Stem” report has discovered more than half of parents (52%) and teachers (57%) admit to having made subconscious stereotypes about girls and boys in relation to STEM subjects.

Some 54% of teachers also said they have witnessed girls drop STEM subjects because of pressure from their parents, and 43% believe students lack an understanding of STEM career options.

Young people also think that more boys choose to study STEM subjects than girls because they match ‘male’ job roles, and only 31% of girls aged 11-14 describe Maths as fun and enjoyable, compared to 50% of those aged 7-11.

Emma McGuigan, senior managing director at Accenture Technology in the UK and Ireland, commented: “Girls’ engagement with STEM is clearly waning as they reach the age when they begin to consider their subject choices and future careers.

“We have to address this by doing more to spark and retain girls’ interest in STEM at an early age, while expanding perceptions and demonstrating what a career or a person who works in STEM looks like beyond the traditional stereotypes.

“Inspiring more girls to pursue STEM subjects and careers will not only help us to address the skills gap in science and technology, it will also help us to create a more diverse workforce that truly represents the world we live in,” she concluded.

Future of FinTech

Nationwide’s building society poll, commissioned by FinTech Fortnight, has revealed 65% of Brits recognise the benefits of financial technology.

Similarly, 51% expect the next generation of banking to add speed and convenience to their everyday money management, and 20% think VR will eventually replace real interaction within financial services.

However the poll also indicated 22% of respondents were nervous about the potential loss of human interaction and engagement in the future.

James Smith, director of mobile and digital at Nationwide, said: “Digital enhancements are changing our relationship with money and financial services providers. Our research shows that customers are excited to embrace these changes as they genuinely benefit from them.

“While digital technology provides convenience, it is important to remember that it is people who offer service and Nationwide believes that the future of banking will be best of both worlds – digital convenience backed by market-leading levels of human service,” he added.