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Digital skills – increasingly important in the workplace

Digital skills are becoming increasingly important. This applies not only in the professional environment, but also in our private lives. People communicate digitally in various ways, for example from their home office with their employer, within the team or even with family who live far away.

Digital competence: Definition

Digital competence is the ability to handle digital tools and the associated requirements. A company can also be described as digitally competent if it can successfully adapt its goals and business processes to the requirements of digital change in the long term.

Those with a high level of digital expertise can actively support digitalisation in companies. This is another reason why digital skills are increasingly being used as a recruitment criterion for employees and managers.

What are digital skills?

Whether privately or professionally – in the course of increasing digitalisation, more and more in-depth knowledge and skills are required. For example, when dealing with social media channels, for taking out digital insurance and other services or for online appointment scheduling.

With digital skills, you can make your private and professional life more efficient. To do this, you must first recognise the advantages of digital communication and technology and use them accordingly to achieve your (company’s) goals.

Here are some examples of digital skills:

  • Dealing with technical requirements (e.g. internet, access to intranet and online clouds, etc.)
  • Professional use of digital tools (e.g. social media, online project management, online telephony)
  • Mastery of online communication skills appropriate to the respective medium (e.g. e-mail, chat or video meeting)
  • Regular digital training and adaptation to constantly changing requirements

Digital skills – the changing world of work

Digital skills are more in demand today than ever before and can take various forms. Skills in digital education are important, among other things, for the introduction of new working models with home offices, digital offices and other developments in the modern working world.

The use of digital technology needs to be learned and behavior in online meetings and working on digital projects also requires completely new skills and competencies. These can be strengthened at any time, even if you have been working for some time. This can be achieved, for example, through in-house training or external further training measures.

Digital expertise already plays a central role in many companies today. Specialist knowledge and soft skills are therefore increasingly being asked about by recruiters in job interviews. So if you invest in your digital skills, you can significantly increase your chances on the job market in the long term. After all, specialist knowledge in the field of digital technologies will become increasingly important and indispensable for companies in the future.

What requirements are important?

Digital skills are not just pure specialist knowledge and technical skills. Certain key skills are crucial for you to be perceived by others as digitally competent. Among other things, you should have the following skills:

  • Open attitude towards new digital technologies
  • Willingness to familiarise yourself with new ways of working and to learn new things
  • Responsible use of digital media
  • Understanding the opportunities and risks of digital communication
  • Willingness to change in order to digitally network professionally, socially or culturally
  • Flexible willingness to work in interdisciplinary teams
  • Empathic behavior to be able to put yourself in the shoes of customers and colleagues
  • Critically and reflectively assess information from various sources
  • Analytical way of thinking and planning skills
  • Knowledge of data processing
  • Using digital collaboration and communication tools
  • Knowledge of digital dangers (e.g. data and virus protection, copyright, licences and copyrights)
  • Fulfillment of safety requirements

How do you develop more digital skills?

Don’t feel particularly digitally competent yet? Anyone can learn how to use digital technologies. There are many ways to do this. We have compiled examples of digital skills for you:

Coaching

You can get advice and training from a professional digital coach.

Internal training

Your company may offer training courses to promote digital skills. Here, you and your team can undergo further digital training and then put what you have learned into practice.

Information from blogs & books

Find out about important digital literacy know-how online or in the library.

Networking as an opportunity

You can also strengthen your skills by networking with digital experts and taking part in their workshops and events.

New tools that require digital skills should be extensively trained when they are introduced. This brings all employees on board at the same time, which is also conducive to a positive team spirit and promotes a general exchange of ideas.

Digital leadership skills increasingly important

If a company increasingly relies on digital change, appropriately trained managers are required. They must be able to plan and manage digitally. Digital leadership skills are particularly important in very large companies. This is because many complex technologies and employees with very different skills come together here and have to be coordinated in line with the company’s own business idea and future orientation.

Always keeping an eye on the keeping an eye while also strengthening the digital skills of all departments and at the same time observing the technical framework conditions – this requires a high level of digital expertise from managers. Digitalisation is never complete, but a constantly evolving process that constantly presents managers with new challenges and makes adjustments necessary.

Digital experts in companies

Digital competence is not just about dealing with innovative digital technology. Customer-centric thinking, flexible working, new types of corporate planning and the further development of digital products are just as important.

More and more companies have recognised the great importance of digital expertise and are increasingly hiring digital experts or entire digital teams in order to professionally support and train their own digital expertise, as well as that of their employees and others involved in the company, with the necessary specialist knowledge.

Conclusion:

Digital competence is important for everyone - not just for managers and employees, but for the entire company that wants to adapt its business objectives to digital change in the long term. Companies that constantly invest in digital expertise have a better chance of being successful on the market. The focus should not only be on the company's own interests, but also on the requirements of suppliers and customers.

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