More than half of respondents (56 percent) participating in a recent survey say they believe today’s employers are not adequately preparing workers with future-forward tech skills.

The survey, conducted by Researchscape for Coding Dojo, measures consumer attitudes about technology skills and offers insights into how employers can “upskill” the tech workforce and improve tech literacy.

The results come at a time when many colleges and universities have to prove their return on investment for students who are increasingly more eager to learn about cultivating skills and post-graduation career prospects than athletics programs or campus social life.

Many industry experts also predict that continued lifelong learning will be a key factor in a healthy future workforce. In fact, a new report from Jobs for the Future (JFF) and Pearson notes that a career path won’t have a single-job trajectory, but instead will require a lifetime of learning. Higher education will have to experience significant reform to create graduates equipped for such a workforce, the report’s authors claim.

Nearly all of those surveyed (90 percent) believe employers, and not individual workers, have the primary responsibility to improve their upskilling initiatives.

Fifty-seven percent of survey respondents don’t have any basic coding skills and 12 percent described themselves as “not at all” tech literate–struggling with basic tech like smartphones and social media.

The survey respondents also offer a few recommendations for how employers can improve their workers’ tech skills:

  • 39 percent think employers should offer incentives to workers who are proactive and who enroll in coding bootcamps outside of work
  • 36 percent think employers should facilitate more communication between tech and non-tech workers to encourage understanding
  • 34 percent think employers should invest in upskilling for non-tech workers
  • 33 percent think employers should host fun events that make tech learning fun–such as “code your own emoji” events
  • 32 percent think employers should boost employees’ careers by equipping them with future-forward technology skills

“One of the surprising insights from this national survey is that people clearly believe that the biggest responsibility for improving the skills of the tech workforce rests with employers, not with individual workers,” says Michael Choi, CEO of Coding Dojo. “There is also a big opportunity here for companies to get more involved with upskilling their workforces. Clearly there is a public perception that companies should be doing more to teach relevant tech skills.”

About the Author:

Laura Ascione

Laura Ascione is the Managing Editor, Content Services at eSchool Media. She is a graduate of the University of Maryland's prestigious Philip Merrill College of Journalism. Find Laura on Twitter: @eSN_Laura

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