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North west residents need digital boost

Date published: 03 June 2019


More than half (56%) of north west residents lack the full essential digital skills set required for the modern workplace, according to the latest Lloyds Bank Consumer Digital Index.

The study found that some residents are unable to use digital skills to problem solve, communicate or operate safely online when required in the workplace.

Outside of the workplace, one in five (19%) lack the full essential digital skills they need, meaning they struggle with tasks like changing the settings on a device (16%), finding and opening applications (15%) and updating passwords (15%).

More than one in ten (13%) had little or no digital skills and classified themselves as ‘digitally disengaged’, slightly higher than the national average of 12%.

The research found that almost a third (30%) residents lack confidence in their digital skills and a further 10% of people in the region are completely offline – meaning they risk missing out on benefits like better work prospects, improved communication with friends and family and financial savings.

Of those not online, 60% say it’s because they worry about having their identity stolen.  

Elyn Corfield, Lloyds Banking Group’s Ambassador for the North West of England, said: “Having the right digital skills can be life enhancing, boosting your employability and earning potential, as well as helping you stay in contact with family and friends and manage your money more effectively.

 “While it’s reassuring to see that across the country almost two thirds of those surveyed think that their digital skills have improved in the last year, there is still scope for those in the north west to grow their digital capability, which will in turn support local businesses and the economy”  

Nationally, the study found that those workers with digital skills earn on average £12,500 more per year than those without.

Despite the lack of skills and increasing demand from employers, almost two thirds (63%) of workers have not received any digital skills training from their employer – including more than half (54%) of those in managerial roles and almost three quarters (71%) of manual workers.

Those working in manufacturing have the lowest level of digital skills (36%) compared to 80% in the finance, insurance and property sectors, according to the report.

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