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43% of people in the UK don’t have the digital skills required by most jobs

We’re once again back on this. A new research by Barclays found that 43% of adults in the United Kingdom lack the digital skills required for most jobs.

And while this may sound like “normal” it’s going to get worse. According to the survey, currently these 40% of people are not qualified for 63% of the jobs. This is going to only get worse as time goes by, because technology advances, but the current pace of education does not.

This means that slowly but surely the digital skills gap is going to get worse instead which opposes many other initiatives that try so “solve” it by pumping out trainings for people. In short, there should be a lot more done and a lot more trainings done in order to try and keep the pace. Great news for training companies, right? Not quite.

The research also shows that on average employers pay up to 10 000 British pounds a year more to people with digital skills such as programming, software design and so on. It also shows that people with skills in graphic design, 3D modelling and data can get up to 3000 pounds more. The thing is training budgets are staying relatively unchanged.  This is why the UK government is actively working on programs to help train more people. Still, the results are too slow and not enough. The results are telling – while children believe they are getting the needed digital skills in school, people in ages 35 to 55 are quite worried. On the whole, only 23% of adults aged 35 – 55 are confident they can keep their digital skills on par.

Wanting to do something, but not knowing what

“People’s level of digital prowess is fast becoming a key determinant of their earning power, yet the UK today is a patchwork of digital skills. Where you live, how old you are, what you do and your education level have an effect on your digital abilities and confidence,” said Ashok Vaswani, CEO of Barclays UK to Computer Weekly.

“At a time when wage growth is so important to families in the UK, we must act fast to improve our home-grown digital skills if the UK is to stay at the forefront of the global digital economy post-Brexit,” said Vaswani.

Sadly, there different ideas of how this can be done. The UK government is currently performing yet another study trying to find out what skills employers need the most and use that information to rework educational programs. You probably see the problem – yet another survey, but no real idea of what to do. Meanwhile the clock is ticking and technology is rapidly advancing. This is why most companies are fending for themselves and those that put their value in their employees and build them up, usually have the best chance of succeeding.