By Agata Nowakowska
According to a recent government report, the digital skills gap is costing the U.K. economy £63 billion a year in lost GDP. Yes, you read that correctly – 63 billion pounds of lost or wasted opportunity thanks to what they are calling a ‘digital skills crisis’ that is seeping into every aspect of business and school life and sees over 12 million adults lacking even basic digital skills.
Obviously, such abysmal figures could not go unaddressed. So, in January the government launched The Digital Strategy, laying out their plan for fixing the skills and knowledge gaps and very much relying on big business to play a vital role in such a plan.
So far, big business has responded positively with Google, Barclays, Lloyds Banking, and BT all offering digital skills training to millions of people across the U.K.
For the government’s part, it means a £1 billion investment into digital infrastructure, as well as £4.7 billion in funding for the research and development of future technologies such as smart energy, robotics, and 5G, as part of a larger industrial strategy, of which Digital Strategy is a component. And most recently, the announcement of a £17.3 million funding boost to support the development of new robotics and Artificial Intelligence (AI) technologies in universities across the U.K.
But what does this mean for you?
Simply put, it means if you want to be part of this new ‘strategy’ and benefit from the investment, you need to boost your employees’ proficiency in digital skills. Now is the time to examine employees’ skill levels, determine where the gaps are, and what you plan to do about them.
Fortunately, there are tons of options and digital skills training is available now 24/7. The only real difficulty is deciding who to trust. Watching a short YouTube video or Googling “How to make an Excel spreadsheet” provides a quick and easy answer, but does not ensure that you’re getting the best answer, nor is it the solution for more complex subjects, for certifications, or for large-scale usage across an entire workforce.
So, what is the solution?
Introduce comprehensive digital skills training to your entire organization: training that is loaded with quality videos, books, and courses, all designed to ensure users acquire the skills and knowledge necessary to lead their organization into the future. Training that takes your employees directly to the right content, without wasting time. Training that is focused on the learner and continuously develops digital literacy, and above all, training that is available whenever and wherever your employee needs it.
Where can I find such training?
Well, since you ask…With us.
We cover a broad range of topics from office tool proficiency to the latest in software development skills, and were named a Core Leader for Digital Learning by the Fosway Group 9-Grid Report.
We can ensure that your employees get the digital skills proficiency they need; the skills that will take you, and your company into the future.
To see what we offer, check us out.
Agata Nowakowska is the vice president of U.K. Sales for Skillsoft EMEA.