UK companies may face a shortage of skilled IT staff as technology specialists race to find lucrative work providing systems and support for the 2012 Olympic Games in London.
Atos Origin, the IT services firm contracted by the International Olympic Committee to manage the systems for the Games, wants to recruit thousands of British IT specialists.
Atos will use its own 46,000 employees but it has to work on the Beijing Games until 2008 and has confirmed that it will also be looking for local IT professionals as early as next year to help with London.
The work will involve everything from building secure IT systems to hold data on the athletes and other people involved in the event to ensuring the fast display of results on the internet and elsewhere.
Richard Banks, business development director at IT recruitment firm Computer Futures, told the Times: “The Olympic work will be exciting, sexy work for people to get involved in. People will be approached for particular projects.”
IT professionals from the public sector would be likely targets, he said.
Patrick Adiba, an executive vice-president at Atos, said: “As we did in Athens, we will be looking for potentially thousands of local people to get involved — some of them contractors, some of them as volunteers.”