Digital Skills in Europe: 4 Areas to Focus On

Digital Skills in Europe: 4 Areas to Focus On

Guest Post by Tom Redford from the ECDL Foundation originally appeared on ECDL Foundation Blog on April 10, 2015    Two years into its work, the Grand Coalition for Digital Jobs has achieved a lot, and recognising the need to continue pushing to develop digital skills in Europe, DG CONNECT, the EU’s digital department, recently published a blog post titled, ‘Here’s how we will improve digital skills and create more jobs in Europe’. It’s more important than ever to ensure that workers in Europe have the skills that both they, and the economy, need; a fact that is highlighted in the post: “Moreover, there is a need for digital skills for nearly all jobs where digital technology complements existing tasks. In the near future 90% of jobs – in careers such as engineering, accountancy, nursing, medicine, art, architecture, and many more – will require some level of digital skills.” The urgency of this situation is shown in numerous studies and surveys on the digital competencies of workers and job-seekers. According to figures from the EU, only half of workers across Europe judged their current ICT skills as being sufficient for the labour market. That falls to as low as 26% in some countries, and needs to be seen in the context of research in Austria showing that people frequently overestimate their digital skills. Employers have similar reservations about the skills of their workforces, with a survey in the UK revealing that 48% of employers did not believe that their workforces had the right digital skills to meet future challenges. The EU’s DESI indicator also highlights the problem, with less than half of the workforce in the EU...
Partners meet to discuss project progress and global vision for jobs in Lisbon

Partners meet to discuss project progress and global vision for jobs in Lisbon

24.04.2015 Lisbon The FIT4JOBS partners team met in Lisbon on April 20-22 to discuss the milestones reached so far in this European Commission funded project that replicates the employer-led training model pioneered by the Irish FIT Ltd (Fast Track to IT) across five additional European countries: Greece, Portugal, Spain, Latvia and Lithuania. The project also shows how the Grand Coalition for Digital Jobs acts at the local level to deal with the lack of digital skills in Europe. The FIT4JOBS project team was built through partnerships between seven non-for profit organisations working to reduce the digital and social divide through training and support for marginalised groups. In the FIT4JOBS project the training is targeted at unemployed young people seeking to enter the workforce. Project partners are members of Telecentre Europe, a member-based association representing networks and promoting initiatives in the field of digital skills and social inclusion. Telecentre Europe has a key role in facilitating National and Local Coalitions for Digital skills and jobs and FIT4JOBS activities in the 6 participating countries are indeed part of their own National and Local Coalition plans. The FIT4JOBS project partners include the leading ICT professional non-governmental association promoting the development of Information Society and e-skills in Latvia – LIKTA (Latvian Information and Communication Technology Association). The leading partner in Lithuania is the Association Asociacija „Langas į ateitį” (Window to the Future), a non-profit initiative launched in 2002 by private companies that provides computer literacy and Internet training to adults. The Spanish Association of Telecentre Networks (ACRT) brings together a number of entities to impulse, activate and maintain public spaces (telecentres) so as to...
Fighting youth unemployment in Latvia

Fighting youth unemployment in Latvia

The first Latvian fit4jobs trainees have just started in the city of Rezekne. Read all about the experience there and how one company is making a difference.   The overall goal of the fit4jobs project is to implement a number of employer-supported ICT skill trainings that connect trainees with actual work opportunities in collaborating companies. In March this year, in the city of Rezekne, the fit4jobs Project partner in Latvia – LIKTA,  started cooperation with Lattelecom, the leading electronic communications service provider in the country. Young people were offered the opportunity to enrol in a tailored training for employment programme as customer service specialist for Lattlecom’s BPO Contact Centre. Young people aged 15 to 25 years were invited to take aptitude tests in order to assess their suitability for the customer service specialist position, which comprises both ICT skills and communication skills.  As a result 12 young people were selected, and have since started their 13-week training. During the course participants will learn “by doing” through communication with clients and colleagues. They will learn how to work with customer management software (CRM)  as well as other practical skills by working with clients under the guidance of experienced colleagues. ” We are particularly happy about the collaboration with the Ltd. Lattelecom BPO Contact Center and the opportunity to involve young people in the project specifically in the region of Latgale in the city of Rezekne, which has the highest unemployment rate out of all the cities in Latvia – 15.2% “: says Mara Jakobsone the Vice-President of LIKTA. “The main advantage of a training-for-employment programme for an employer is that it allows to prepare the employees according to the company’s needs. This is the best solution to bridge the...
Partnering with the State Unemployment Agency in Lithuania

Partnering with the State Unemployment Agency in Lithuania

Guest post by Karolina Jasvinaite, Lithuania Lithuania is one of six EU countries which recently started  implementing training-for-employment initiative focusing  on ICT skills according to fit4jobs training model. Association Langas į ateitį  is the coordinator of fit4jobs national activities in Lithuania. Vilnius State Unemployment  agency has been  invited to join as a social partner for this Project. On April 8th the partnership agreement was signed. „We decided to join forces to overcome the recent gap in Lithuania – great demand of IT skilled people and a big  number of unemployed youth “, said Loreta Križinauskienė, managing director of Langas į ateitį. At the current project stage four steps of the participants selection has already been accomplished. Over150 applications were received initially. During the rest selection process – motivational interviews as well as analytical tasks – 40 young people were chosen for three months training. 20-30 y.o. Project participants will be trained on IT skills demanded by employers locally. As well as  soft skills. Training is followed by   internship at the local employer‘s site with hope that  best participants will be employed. Three courses  have been  offered to the Lithuanian participants: Basics of Java programming, Basics of   WEB  development, Information systems testing and analysis. Langas į ateitį also issued a press release that attracted a lot of media antettion and that you can download here. For more information please contact Rita Gobere, Project manager of fit4jobs in Lithuania. E-mail: rita.gobere@langasiateiti.lt, Website: www.langasiateiti.lt  ...