A new report has identified in many companies an insufficient number of specialist employees capable of handling and interpreting data derived from web analytics.

The report, by independent research firm, Econsultancy, in association with Lynchpin, says that although 40 per cent of firms in 2011 had expressed an intention to up their spending on online data monitoring staff, the actual average proportion of web analytics budgets allotted to internal staffing has remained constant since 2011, at 52 per cent.

Meanwhile, according to the report, 30 per cent of firms were identified as having no specialist online data analysts among their staff – an increase of five per cent since 2011.

At the same time, those firms employing as many as four dedicated analysts equated to 58 per cent of those surveyed – a fall of seven per cent since 2011.

The report, which has been carried out annually for five years and published as the Online Measurement and Strategy Report, says that 50 per cent of the 700 specialist analytical and marketing representatives making up its survey database had identified budgetary and resource pressures as the main obstacles to achieving a truly worthwhile approach to web analytics.

However, the report also noted that recruitment was an additional significant challenge for many firms. Managing Director of Lynchpin, Andrew Hood, said:

‘resourcing is clearly an issue, with businesses struggling to recruit experienced analysts.’

One other point of note from the report is the astonishing claim, testified to by 59 per cent of firms, that only under half of all web analytics data is actually considered to be of any use.