Almost 75% of Brits upskilled during coronavirus pandemic

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  • As the nation logs on to Zoom daily it’s the over 55s who have become savvy with FaceTime and online banking

    Lockdown has given many of us extra time to try new things and when it comes to those who upskilled during the pandemic, it’s the over 55s who are leading the way.

    eBay has revealed Britain is a nation of upskillers, after it conducted a study through its Digital Skills Index, which found 73% of workers were forced to brush up on their tech skills as a result of the pandemic restrictions.

    With the HR sector having seen the biggest push, followed by finance and healthcare, it’s the charity sector that’s seen 1,000 workers boost their confidence in the workplace. Over a fifth of staff members quickly grasp online skills to support fundraising activities with the help of a new six-month programme.

    Upskilling, technology

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    Jonathan Chevallier, CEO at Charity Digital, said: “As we head closer to Christmas, traditionally this would’ve been a busy time of year for charity fundraising events and people collecting donations on the streets. With no sign of large scale events possible anytime soon and the rise of a cashless society, charities have had to rapidly future-proof, add a digital edge to their skillset, and jump onto online platforms like eBay to help with their fundraising efforts.”

    Meanwhile as localised restrictions such as rule of six and 10pm curfews to name but a few, continue to be enforced with a three tier system, over 55s have had no choice but to use their newfound digital skills. With 41% embracing online banking, 54% tackling video calls, and 43% trying online shopping for the first time.

    online banking, upskilling

    The online marketplace surveyed 1,300 UK adults in work to mark National Upskilling Week (2-8 November). And from it, 85% said they had got better digital skills as a result of remote working – using video conferencing and online training tools.

    As a result 52% of staff have been able to work more flexibly, with 30% able to boost confidence when using digital skills in the workplace.

    READ MORE: The lessons you learned from lockdown that could help second time around

    As part of a new initiative, eBay is training hundreds of charity workers to optimise e-commerce fundraising avenues through it’s ‘Charity Connect’ scheme. Charity is a tailored six month training programme that provides financial and skills-based support for eBay’s charity community in response to the pandemic, with over 1,000 participants from the charity sector either supported through online webinars, or the more in depth 1:1 training.

    Murray Lambell, eBay UK General Manager, said: “We’re serious about helping charities embrace online retail, raise funds and ultimately continue the incredible work they do. With our Charity Connect program, we are pleased to see a 21% uplift in our charity community listing since lockdown.”

    Richard Pattison, Online Operations Manager at Cancer Research UK, added, “The income stream from our e-commerce efforts during the last six months has been vital in raising money for our charity, online retail has been a lifeline.”


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