The new generation of young people are certainly digitally savvy, but they are not sure of how to best use their digital skills for work purposes, according to 47 percent of senior decision makers surveyed in a YouGov online poll.
The study highlights the growing need for those aged 16-25 to develop a stronger foundation in digital skills – defined as being able to use collaboration and communication tools, design software, as well as understand the cloud and develop apps.
At a time when the health of UK plc is increasingly dependent on a digital economy, the study, commissioned by Capgemini, of over 1,000 employers of young people revealed that 84 percent of interviewees agree digital literacy is important in their place of business. However, a significant 18 percent believe that not enough young people have the specific digital skills needed for their organisation. This increases to more than one in three in IT and telecoms, and one in five in media, marketing, advertising, PR & sales.
Of the digital skills listed, the ability to use the internet for work purposes (87%), staying safe online (87%) and creating basic digital content (84%) were identified as the most sought after when recruiting young people. Looking ahead in five years’ time, of those listed, the ability to protect personal and work information ranked the highest (20%), which could be seen as a response to the recent major cyber-attacks.
The research into the digital literacy of young people and the impact on UK businesses was developed as part of a new Digital Partnership with The Prince’s Trust, which will see Capgemini deliver a series of programmes teaching 600 of the most disadvantaged young people in the UK the skills necessary to develop a career in today’s digital economy.