Currently, there are 12.6 million adults lacking digital skills in the UK, according to Randstad 2017.
The rate of technological advancement is quickly outpacing the current skills of many UK businesses’ workforce. This comes at a time where companies are increasingly reliant on technology, leading to digital skills becoming a necessity in the workplace.
The digital skills gap is widening as technology continues to grow at an exponential rate. It is imperative that the current workforce grows to meet the new demands of the industry, or risk becoming obsolete in the future.
Those who are not digital natives, people born since digital technology became ‘the norm’, are struggling to meet the growing demands of technology. The current UK workforce is getting older, and the retirement age has risen, leading to a large portion of employees not being trained the digital skills they need to succeed. Lacking essential digital skills in our current technological climate could lead to non-skilled workers potentially becoming unemployable in the future.
UK businesses need highly skilled workers to fill their existing needs, but 24% of digital agencies have 2-4 open job vacancies at any time, meaning that they are struggling to find workers to match these requirements.
Currently, there are only 7 million digital natives in the UK, and this generation is only just entering the workforce. However, the answer to the digital skills gap is not just injecting young talent into our workforce.
Employers need to tap into their existing workforce’s abilities, and recognise the advantages of upskilling their staff. The cost of training employees can be prohibitive for some companies, but commercial training is not the only option.
Apprenticeships are a financially viable way to upskill your existing staff, without the substantial cost of commercial training. Your employees will receive specialised technical training, which will enable them to gain the digital skills they desperately need, without the huge expense of commercial training.
The digital skills gap is not an unsurmountable challenge: you are not too old to succeed in a career in tech. Find out how your workforce can thrive in the tech industry here.