In today’s digital age we live in a professional world where everything can change at astonishing speed. Technology has gone from being simply an option to becoming the catalyst for organizational success. Against this backdrop, adapting to change is essential for any company that wants to stand out and continue growing. The key? Develop the basic digital skills of your collaborators.
The speed of modern technological transformations has redefined the rules of the game. It’s no longer just about keeping up, but about taking charge of the situation and leading change. That’s why, in this article, we’ll explain what basic digital skills are, which are the most important, and how to equip your collaborators to take your company to the next level.
Basic digital skills: Definition and scope in the workplace
The term ‘competencies’ refers to the set of skills, abilities and knowledge possessed by an individual that allow them to efficiently accomplish a particular task. According to the European Framework of Digital Competencies for Citizenship (DigComp), digital competencies are a combination of knowledge, skills and attitudes needed to interact effectively in the digital environment. These skills involve the safe and responsible use of digital technologies in all environments, whether during training, at work or in wider society.
Importance of basic digital skills: How do they boost business performance?
In a business context, these competencies become more and more important as technology is integrated further into daily operations. The effective implementation of digital tools streamlines business processes, reducing response times and greatly improving productivity.
Furthermore, the competitive edge of a company is also directly affected by the presence and development of digital skills within its infrastructure. Companies that adopt and take advantage of the latest technologies tend to stand out in highly competitive markets.
In addition to this, the rapid evolution of the digital environment requires a robust ability to adapt to change. The development of these digital skills is the key to providing employees with the versatility they need to adopt new technologies and approaches.
Technology has become the engine of progress, and the development of basic digital skills allows companies to gain an advantage and drive through this transformation. And although not all transformations are successful, according to McKinsey, companies that implement effective skills development programs as part of their digital transformation process are on average 4.1 times more likely to achieve success.
Digital skills breakdown: Which are the most important?
The EU DigComp framework includes 21 competencies grouped into five main areas. These include: collecting and managing information and data; communication and collaboration; the creation of digital content; security; and problem solving. Let’s take a closer look at some of the most important competencies from these five areas:
The modern digital world demands extensive technological knowledge even when it comes to simple day-to-day tasks. For example, think of making a payment with a smartphone, chatting with friends via instant messaging, or carrying out administrative procedures. To do all of this, we must have a solid digital literacy. This competence goes far beyond simply knowing how digital tools work. It requires an individual to possess a deep understanding of information, be able to assess the credibility of sources, and be able to utilize information and communication technologies (ICT) effectively.
Computer protection and security
This competency involves knowing how to identify an array of cyber threats (viruses, phishing, malware, cyber fraud), and understanding best practice when it comes to countering them and maintaining digital integrity. It also involves the protection of devices, content, personal data and privacy in all digital environments. Computer protection and security is vital to safeguard privacy and confidentiality in an increasingly interconnected world.
Communication and collaboration through digital tools
The ability to communicate and collaborate effectively using digital tools is vital in the modern work environment. This competence involves knowing how to interact through digital technologies, and how to understand the digital media in an appropriate context. It also covers the use of digital technologies for collaboration, as well as crucial know-how on sharing data, information and digital content. Lastly, it concern’s one’s ability to participate in society through the use of public and private digital services.
Data collection and management
The ability to collect, analyze and manage data effectively is more important in the modern workplace than ever before. Data collection and management is a competence that involves understanding how to extract valuable information, interpret trends, and make decisions based on solid data. It also covers how to store, manage and organize digital data, as well as how to judge the relevance and value of sources.
Technological problem solving
Solving technological problems is a competence that allows us to identify needs and problems in the digital environment, as well as solve them. It usually requires the development of analytical and creative skills to address technology-related challenges. It also concerns the use of digital tools to innovate business processes, and the ability to identify where our own digital skills need to be improved or updated.
Digital content development
Digital content development is a skill encompassing the ability to create and edit digital content in different formats, as well as express oneself through digital media. To master it, an individual should know what types of digital content exist, how to create them on different open platforms, and understand how copyrights and licenses apply to them.
How to develop digital skills? Practical strategies for successful acquisition
As we have seen, developing basic digital skills in your workforce is essential to achieve business success. But getting there requires a strategic and proactive approach. Here we look at the steps required to achieve it:
1. Evaluate the existing skills of your staff
To evaluate the current skills of your staff, you need to know both the hard and soft skills that your collaborators already possess, and determine how well these skills are aligned with your organization’s objectives.
You can do this through questionnaires, surveys or performance evaluations. Carry out an evaluation, ranging in scope from basic to advanced levels in key areas such as the use of digital tools or communication in virtual environments. Based on the results, you will then be able to identify which skills require development, as well as choose the ideal training method to match.
2. Define specific goals
Once you have identified the existing gaps in your team’s competencies, you must establish clear and specific goals for those that need to be developed or improved. Don’t limit yourself to vague, general objectives, but instead define concrete digital competencies that line up with your organization’s business objectives. For example, your goals might include strengthening cybersecurity or improving efficiency in data management.
3. Design a training plan
Each member of your team has different learning needs and skill levels. Design a custom training plan that can adapt to these variations, and include specific modules to strengthen weak points. Remember that while designing your training program to develop basic digital skills, you can employ different methodologies such as learning by doing or game-based learning.
4. Use educational tools and resources designed for training
Today there are endless online educational tools and resources available, many specially designed for the development of digital skills. Opt for a flexible e-learning platform that offers online courses with interactive resources. These will engage your employees in training and allow them to develop skills that transfer directly to their jobs.
5. Evaluate progress and make adjustments
Constant evaluation is key to determining the effectiveness of your training plan. Implement regular, periodic assessments to measure both individual and group progress. Identify areas that need improvement and make adjustments accordingly. If you’re unsure about how to conduct a training evaluation, you can find all the information you need in this complete guide.
6. Promote the application of knowledge in the work environment
Learning is not complete until it is applied to a practical situation, and this is especially true of digital skills. Therefore, a key part of your strategy should include actively encouraging the application of knowledge acquired in day-to-day work. You can achieve this by promoting internal projects that allow employees to face real technological challenges and collaborate to implement digital solutions.
Now you know just how important it is to develop and strengthen basic digital skills in your team, we invite you to try isEazy Skills, a truly innovative training platform with a growing library of over 540 courses. Take advantage of its dynamic interactivity, and build your employees’ soft skills with courses adapted to the latest patterns of content consumption. Our catalog will help you develop your professionals’ talent through a 100% practical methodology, designed for the effective transfer of skills to the work environment. So what are you waiting for? Request your demo today!