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Report on Digital Skills comissioned by Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS).

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Report on Digital Skills comissioned by Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS).

Download a copy of this report titled 'No Longer Optional:Employer Demand for Digital Skills'. A copy is also available on the TD-Info website HERE.

This report may be of interest to members of various groups in TD-Info who are involved with areas such as skills, learning and digitalisation. These include: the Good Practice Study Group, JIG-V, the Support & Information Innovation Community of Interest (SII-COI).

This research was commissioned by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS). It aims to provide an overview of digital skills
demand and to help inform the development of evidence-based digital skills policy.

From the Executive Summary of the Report:

"Through this analysis, we find digital skills are becoming near-universal requirements for employment. The move up the career ladder from low- to high-skill jobs comes with increased demand for specific digital skills. Acquiring specific digital skills makes career progression as well as a pay increase more likely. In certain fields, job seekers need to develop digital skills related to specific technical tools of their chosen discipline to advance their careers."

Key Findings from the Research include:

Digital skills are near-universal ‘Baseline’ digital skills such as Microsoft Office and other productivity software tools are commonly required in jobs across all skills levels and have become a ticket to entry in the labour market

Digital skills carry a wage differential Overall, roles requiring digital skills pay 29% (£8,300 per annum) over those roles that do not (£37,000 p.a. vs £28,700 p.a.). This difference is apparent at all skill levels, but the differential increases at higher levels

Digital skills are in demand everywhere Digital skills are required in at least 82% of online advertised openings across the UK but the precise skills demanded are not uniform across the country

Specific digital skills may help workers avoid the risk of automation: By entering a role that requires specific digital skills,
workers can reduce their risk of automation by a dramatic 59%. Specific digital skills commonly complement uniquely human skills such as design, writing or communication, which in combination are difficult to automate and critical to a firm’s success 

Specific digital skills promote career progression: To maximise chances of success in the digital economy, job seekers must go beyond baseline digital skills and develop more specific skills...This may include digital tools such as Adobe Photoshop for designers; computer-aided design for engineers and manufacturing workers; customer relationship  management software for sales and marketing professionals; and
computer programming and networking for IT professionals. These specific digital skills are required in 28% of low-skill jobs, 56% of middle-skill jobs, and 68% of high-skill jobs.

Implications from this Research include:

  • Job seekers need a complete package of skills for success in the economy, both digital and non-digital
  • Digital skills policy should be driven locally
  • Digital skills will change over time


NB: This report was commissioned by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS). Burning Glass Technologies is solely responsible for its content. Views expressed in this report do not necessarily reflect those of the DCMS or its affiliates


Added: 16th August 2019