Every day, more jobs and social activities become dependent on Information & Communication Technology (ICT) skills. Government services, banking and even social lives are managed more easily by those who know their way round a computer or smart phone. We all need good ICT skills to cope with the demands of modern living.
Did you know that?
- Over 90% of jobs require basic internet skills
- 72% of employers won’t interview people without computer/internet skills
- 25% of jobs are advertised on line only
- More and more job applications are on line
- Soon all welfare benefits will all be online
- Shopping on line brings savings
What you can do online:
- Access Public Services
- Apply for Welfare Benefits
- Keep abreast with Finances – on line banking
- Save money shopping online
- Watch TV and listen to radio
- Keep in touch with friends and family – skype, email and social media
- Source information about Hobbies
- Access Learning
However, currently over 11 million people in the UK lack the basic digital skills needed in today’s world. On behalf of all unions, on April 14th 2014 unionlearn signed up to support the UK Digital Inclusion Charter, launched to mark the 25th anniversary of the World Wide Web. The charter aims to help more people go online.
The Charter says:
“11 million people in the UK lack basic digital skills and capabilities. The consequences are profound. Without access, skills, motivation and trust people will continue to be digitally excluded, with a real social and human impact; affecting job prospects, health, education and more.
This is not just about older workers either. A recent (OECD) international study found that young people are very much at ease with technology but often lack the skills to implement their digital skills for the workplace.
Brushing up on packages such as Word, Excel (spread sheets) and Access (databases) will help you both in the world of work but to manage your social life nd hobbies better.
There are lots of ways our learning project can help you and your friends and families to improve their ICT skills.
Some URTU members are lucky enough to be able to access a workplace learning centre which provides an ideal setting. For others community learning centres and libraries are very welcoming. Have a look on www.ukonlinecentres.com to see if there is a UK Online centre near you. UK Online centres, some of them union learning centres, will have friendly staff to help you. If you have a laptop or computer at home, there are lots of sites to help improve your skills.
Here are some options for you and don’t forget that your ULR will be on hand to help you with advice and support.
Courses and websites:
If you want to dip your toe in the water, try Learnmyway which is free and good quality. It helps you step by step:
Get started – mouse, keyboard etc
Learn more – job hunting, online banking, online forms, managing money, using facebook etc.
What next – history, hobbies etc.
You can work towards achieving an Online Basics certificate as well. Take a look on www.learnmyway.com and don’t forget, if you need help see your ULR or drop in at a UK Online centre
BBC Webwise – To access first rate resources and information mainly geared at improving your safe use of the internet. Excellent and also free.
Learn my way – This package will help you get to grips with using computers and the internet. The short package of courses covers how to search and explore the internet, keep in touch with email, and use public services online – all while being safe and secure
Intermediate and Advanced Qualifications
There are a lot of follow more advanced ICT course and qualifications such as ITQ, CLAIT and EDCL. Your ULR will be able to signpost you or arrange for a provider to come in to the workplace. There may well be a cost attached but your ULR can advise you.