UK’s digital skills gap poses risk to economic recovery according to Microsoft research

Microsoft released new research entitled ‘Unlocking the UK’s Potential with Digital Skills’, developed in partnership with Goldsmiths and the University of London, to examine the UK’s digital skills gap and provide practical guidance for organisations on how to tackle it. The study unveiled the UK’s digital skills gap which could hinder the country’s economic recovery due to the large digital talent pool required to drive UK competitiveness. In this vein, it foresees the rise of a ‘Next Gen Worker’ that is empowered by low-code and no-code technology, yet it also finds that a failure to embrace digital skills could leave companies struggling to compete on the global stage. According to the study, digital skills are responsible for a minimum of 2.4% of a firm’s bottom line; for example, for a company with annual profits of £1 billion,this equates to £24 million every year. To this aim, it signposts initial steps organisations can take to capitalise on the potential of the ‘Next Gen Worker’ including: Evaluating talent pools and developing data literacy and integrated digital teams to enhance skills; considering non-traditional learning opportunities and evolving learning schemes to focus on advanced digital training and creating champions for change; and re-thinking talent acquisition, identifying gaps, and fostering a dynamic culture, inclusive of everyone.