Search ‘digital literacy’ and you’ll be overwhelmed with articles and research pieces stressing its importance, especially within the early education years. Its significance for the younger generation is reflected in ‘coding for kids’ workshops being rolled out across libraries during school holidays, within school curriculum addressing cyber bullying and what to do about it, right through to school assessments requiring presentations using apps.
Digital literacy for ‘generation youth’ is unequivocal. And guess what? It’s the same for the older generations and workforces as a whole. ‘Digital literacy’ is not just a young person’s issue.
Within a recent Forbes article about future-proofing workforces, digital literacy is described as “the ability to find, evaluate, and convey information via digital mediums”. The same piece emphasises its relevance and importance across all industries, and as an example references how mechanics now also need to be able to service apps and software, such as navigation tools. Siri and Alexa can’t do that (yet).
Still not convinced of the importance of digital literacy to your workforce? A 2018 article published on Education Weekly looked at different roles within a US existing healthcare company including an entry-level cleaner position, emergency room nurse, and a kitchen production supervisor in a hospital – and all required digital literacy (Herold, 2018). The cleaners used iPhone apps to see what rooms were vacant and needed attention, and also operated a digital ultra-violet-light cleaning system. The nursing position used software for recording patient information and data, for transferring and locating patients, and different digital software again for bloodwork, x-rays and for ordering medicine. The nurse interviewed cited “If I’m not with a patient, I’m on the computer.” Within the kitchen a production supervisor used software for food receipt, food requests (patients ordered their meals through iPads), and subsequent analytics adjusted daily recipes and weekly food ordering. All of this was two years ago.
With digital literacy, across ALL industries, you need to get on board or risk your company never leaving the station. TAFE Queensland can help. Our Corporate Solutions team can work with you to help you create a workforce development plan to:
To find out more get in touch today.