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SkillsTalk

How to upskill for the digital age

By Fi Darby | 19 August 2020


The digital age has well and truly arrived. More than that, it has been boosted by the impact of coronavirus. You’ve probably noticed a recent increase in your reliance on digital tools at both work and home. Whatever your current industry or job role, digital skills are more important now than they’ve ever been. There’s never been a better time to think about upskilling.

SkillsTalk take a look at how digital skills training can keep you in work in Australia’s rapidly developing employment marketplace.

Assessing skills and making a start

Before you make any decisions about digital skills training, it can be really helpful to assess your current skills level. You may feel you’re behind everyone else but this probably isn’t true. For example, if you have a social media account or enjoy working with spreadsheets, you are already exercising your digital brain. To help you work out your current skill level, we have a few questions you can ask yourself.
  • Which aspects of my current job involve me using a computer?
  • Which digital skills do I already use in my home life?
  • Which areas of information technology do I really enjoy?
  • Which digital skills do I feel confident in?
  • Which digital skills do I need to improve on?
Once you’ve answered these questions, you’ll probably have a clearer idea of where you need and want to make improvements. You might want to start with the basics or gain knowledge in a more specific area such as graphic design, social media, programming or data management.

Securing your career with digital skills

digital skills concept

Because digital skills are required across so many industries, the range of job options is vast. From agriculture to cyber security, each area of commerce has its own information technology requirements. We’ve selected two career examples below but it’s worth remembering that almost all digital skills are highly transferable.

Software development careers

This is a great time to be a programmer. More industries are switching to digital and remote working. This means coding skills continue to be in high demand. With more people working from home, our reliance on software is only going to increase. Even before COVID-19, the following roles were projected for very strong growth in the five years to 2024.  To be a successful software developer, you need to have a sound understanding of computers, electronics, engineering and technical design. If you have an existing interest in coding and understand the basics of how computer systems work, this might be a great career step for you. It’s worth remembering this is a competitive area of employment. A digital skills course can help your application stand out from the crowd. We have a couple of examples for you below.

Kick start your programming career

Whether you want to gain brand new programming skills or update your existing ones, Upskilled’s - ICT40518 Certificate IV in Programming is a great option. This online digital skills course combines vendor courses, for example MTA: Database - Database Fundamentals, with a select range of vendor neutral and tutor created courses. The result is a broad-based qualification that will appeal to employers across a range of industries.

Go for the money and learn about networking

digital concept

Network design experts are responsible for network development. Their task is to keep the systems we all rely on in top working condition. If you’re interested in moving into this specialist area, you’ll need some formal digital skills training. Upskilled’s ICT50418 - Diploma of Information Technology Networking has been designed to provide exactly this. Vendor courses include the training for a range of MCSA cloud and server qualifications. These are complimented by key vendor neutral and tutor developed courses.

Digital marketing careers

There can be no doubt; digital marketing is here to stay. From curating inspirational content to setting up targeted online ads, digital marketing professionals are at the top of the sales game. Below are two examples of digital marketing related job roles that were expected, just before the COVID-19 pandemic, to show strong or very strong growth in the five years to 2024. With the current popularity of online shopping, we see no reason for this trend to change. Digital marketing careers require both people skills and digital skills. If you’re already working in a customer service role, you’re on your way there. If you’re not confident about your IT skills, you can always give your career prospects a boost with related digital skills training. We have a couple of examples below.

Utilise your existing social media skills

Social media plays an important part in digital marketing. If you’re already a genius on Facebook or gaining a strong following on Instagram, you could be on your way to a rewarding new career. What many employers are looking for is a strong understanding of digital marketing practices. 

These include interpreting market trends and planning different types of marketing strategies. Upskilled’s 10118NAT  - Diploma of Social Media Marketing provides exactly that and more. Whether you’re already working in marketing or want to build on your existing social media expertise, this course is perfect for you. 

Students interested in learning about social media but don't have the time to do a complete qualification, there are also two comprehensive short courses available: SMC-Intensive-Social Media Intensive and SMC-Essentials Social Media Essentials. 

Get creative with digital media 

Creative marketing gets attention. It can often be those little snippets of super creativity that can make or break a marketing campaign. If you want to see your own creative abilities channelled into an exciting new career, digital media training might be just what you need. 

Upskilled’s ICT40815 - Certificate IV in Digital Media Technologies can give you the skills required to break into this field. This online course includes units on simple web page design, interactive media, digital animations and sound editing. It also takes you through some important professional standards such as technical documentation and website accessibility.

Look to the future and grow your digital skills

Upskilled offers a great range of nationally-recognised courses in the digital world including IT and marketing. Most courses are only 12-months long and are flexible enough to fit in with a busy work and home life. As Australia takes the next big step into a digital future it’s time to decide: will you join in or get left behind?
 
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