Looking for a guide to digital skills? With the tech industry constantly evolving it’s vital to stay up to date with key skills that you can put on your CV. With the tech job market ever-crowded it’s more important than ever to be able to sell yourself.
What are the basic digital skills?
Digital skills are broadly defined as the knowledge and ability to determine information needs from digital technology sources. To appropriately use digital tools and facilities to input, access, organize, integrate and assess digital resources as well as to construct new knowledge.
These are the basic digital skills that will be second nature to Millennials and Generation Z although may have to be learned by older generations. It is vital that to keep up in the IT and tech industry employees keep up to date with their digital skills.
Why are digital skills necessary?
Digital skills underpin so much of how modern work is conducted. Many professions rely on employees having digital skills and regard them as essential. A staggering 90% of professionals are required to have basic digital skills. This increases to 98% for managerial positions.
Social media digital skills are crucial to the digital marketing mix but are worth pulling out as social media has come to play such a significant role in our day-to-day as well as professional lives. Social media management tools, performance measurement, new channel research, brand presence/voice, influencer marketing, and paid vs organic all play a part in connecting with prospective and current users.
How big is the digital skills gap?
Despite the importance of digital skills, there is a skills gap. In the UK, according to the Department for Education, the problems run deep, with 10% of working adults not in possession of basic digital skills. We can safely assume, then, that digital skills at a higher level will be sorely lacking. Indeed, only 12% of executives believed that UK graduates had satisfactory digital skills in 2018, according to Deloitte, down from 20% in 2017. Three quarters reported experiencing challenges in digital recruitment.
This digital skills gap has consequences not only for job seekers but for the industry itself. The European Commission found that 38% of workplaces suffered negative results as a consequence of a lack of digital skills. This digital skills gap is more pronounced in highly-skilled professions.
A guide to digital skills.
Depending on the job role you are currently in there are many ways one can go about refreshing their skills. Online learning is an excellent way to develop your skill set while also in full-time work. Similarly, companies interested in upskilling their workforce. For companies in which digital skills are present, one of the key channels through which digital skills are imparted is on-the-job training, with junior staff learning and honing their digital skills with their managers. For companies going through digital transformations, in particular, the passing of digital skills between employees will be a key learning channel.
How can digital skills help my career?
Acquiring digital skills will undoubtedly improve your career prospects. Many more roles are requiring digital skills. In addition to this, new roles have come into being based around new digital skills. 15 years ago, web analysts, social media consultants, and PPC managers did not exist.
Digital skills can also stand to boost the career of those who want to embrace the flexibility of freelance work. The digitisation of existing skillsets and the creation of new digital professions means that remote and flexible working is more possible than ever. With the right skills, software and a good internet connection, anyone can be a digital freelancer.
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