Employers ignore youngsters’ IT skills and knowledge

Employers are ignoring the IT skills and knowledge of young people who have recently entered the workforce, claims a survey.

It found that although 82% of school leavers and 84% of graduates felt confident about their IT skills, only 51% of them were using this knowledge at work. Some 85% knew how to use presentation software, typically PowerPoint, but only 39% said they used at work. Also 88% claimed they could use spreadsheet software effectively though 65% used it at work.

The survey also indicated that those polled tended to learn on the job – only 12% of respondents said they got formal training.

“The generation of people coming into the workplace now have had technology round them all their lives,” said Tony Speakman, regional manager at database software company Filemaker, which commissioned the research. “It’s second nature to them.

“Companies that are using technology to make themselves efficient… will ultimately be the more successful organisations. We’re saying let’s make sure we’re using the skills of the people we’re employing.

“Today’s new recruits possess IT skills that previous generations did not have and job specifications need to be re-aligned to use these skills and incorporate them into job functions.”

The research was based on an e-mail poll of 1,000 recent gradutes and school leavers and was carried out by Loudhouse Research.

Read more the UK’s IT skills shortfall.

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