Understanding technology will help you thrive at work.
Transferrable technology skills are critical to improving your career prospects in today’s workplace.
Technology has transformed the way we live and work and, in providing unrestricted access to information, has enriched our lives and unlocked countless new job opportunities.
Advances in technology have made goods and services easier to attain. They’ve reduced the burden of mundane and complex tasks in the workplace, as well as revolutionising the way we communicate.
Our reliance on IT will only continue to grow stronger, even though most people have no idea how to create, develop or fix the websites, mobile applications and devices that we’ve all become so utterly reliant upon.
In the midst of a technological revolution it, therefore, shouldn’t be a surprise to discover that more than two-thirds (68%, via CWJobs) of British businesses now believe that being educated in technology-related subjects – for instance, coding – is more important than excelling at the traditional staples, such as maths and English.
As always, employers are searching for people who can help them to achieve their goals. Today, this means new recruits who not only have the skills to do the job they’ve been hired for but who also add value to the wider business and can help to future-proof its growth and innovation.
Put very simply, people with additional expertise in the world of technology are getting ahead in the job market. Whether its machine learning, cybersecurity, artificial intelligence, big data analysis, or the internet of things, a curious mind combined with an understanding of technology will give you the edge over other job seekers; especially if you’re a young person making the transition from education into full-time employment.
As both a mother and a recruitment professional, I think it is critical that we, as members of the North East business community, come together to promote the importance of transferable skills like technology to students long before they begin to prepare for life after education.
Whatever a young person’s career aspirations, by encouraging them to gain an understanding of practical new technologies that are important to businesses and portable throughout their career, we can ensure they don’t get left behind.
Having spoken to the leaders of several technology-focused companies, there is clear concern about the lack of engagement between the IT sector and educational institutions, particularly during the primary school years.
Most business leaders don’t believe that children are taught enough technology specialisms and, in order to close the skills gap, say they would consider partnering with a school or college to help.
I do something similar by going into schools to stage mock interviews and run CV workshops, and I would encourage anyone who feels this way to reach out to Founders4Schools (.org.uk) which is the organisation that facilitates my sessions.
Founders4Schools is an award-winning national charity with the sole purpose of inspiring students and preparing them for the rapidly changing world of work by connecting them with business leaders.
Free to use, they provide a sophisticated online platform which brings together educators with leaders and senior people who work at successful and growing businesses. By enabling teachers to connect with you easily, it is a hassle-free way to make a positive difference to the lives of young people.
Hearing your story could be the moment that inspires someone to change their path or realise the skills they need to have a successful career. Even if you can only spare a couple of hours every few months to create ‘meaningful encounters’ in the classroom, just think about how many young people in your local community could benefit from your experience.