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Almost 60% of UK workers have had no digital skills training

Companies often complain of a lack of skilled workers, but many employees have also claimed they’ve not received any digital training, according to CV Genius

Almost 60% of workers in the UK have had no training in digital skills, according to research by CV Genius.

Looking into data from several sources, including the Industrial Strategy Council, the OECD and the Office of National Statistics, the career platform found 58% of people working in the UK claimed to have had no digital skills training, and 28% are under-qualified for their job.

One in five people said they actively avoided applying for a new role because they do not have the digital skills needed, and a quarter either did not ask for, or did not get, a promotion for the same reason.

Ethan David Lee, career expert at CV Genius, said: “On the back of Brexit, Covid and the digitisation of many jobs, combined with a systemic lack of focus on continuous learning, many industries have been left struggling to find talent, and individual workers are increasingly missing out on opportunities.

“However, while this is an issue for the UK as a whole, it does present individual businesses and job-seekers the chance to get a leg up if they take the time to understand and react to the skills shortage in their industry.”

The UK has been suffering from a technology skills gap for years, and it only appears to be growing wider – not only do firms complain that the pool of available workers lacks the appropriate skills to fill empty technology roles, but a large number of adults in the UK don’t have the basic digital skills needed for work and day-to-day tasks.

This has led to many difficulties for organisations, including having to put projects on hold.

According to CV Genius, around a third of recruiters are finding it difficult to find people with the right skillsets to fill roles.

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Teachers lacking the skills needed to teach technical subjects has been an ongoing issue, and the report found it’s not only teachers who have underwhelming training skills – by 2030, 4.3 million workers will have inadequate skills to provide training.

One of the reasons cited for this lack of digital skills in particular is the fast-changing technology landscape – previous research by the World Economic Forum claimed 85% of businesses predict the rise in digital adoption will be a driver of transformation for them over the next year, but organisations are lacking the workers needed to keep up with this pace of change.

Digital skills are not the only criteria lacking, and candidates not having the appropriate soft skills is an issue not just for the wider workplace, but for the technology industry as well, with many firms looking for skills such as analytical and creative thinking, resilience, flexibility and agility, and motivation and self-awareness in their future employees.

Half of workers in the UK are also lacking in certain soft skills, and CV Genius suggested this is especially true of those in a leadership or management position where soft skills such as decision-making and effective communication are involved.

This soft skills gap is likely to grow in the coming years, with CV Genius predicting that by 2030, 22 million workers will not have the soft skills for leadership and management positions.

A dedication to lifelong learning and internal training are just some of the ways experts have recommended to begin closing the skills gap and ensure it doesn’t widen again in the future.

CV Genius said employers should offer internal training from appropriate education providers to employees so that they are equipped with the skills needed now and in the future, and also called on workers to continually work on their credentials through courses, certifications or bootcamps.

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