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Jefrrey Connor-Naylor   ·  

Investing in Digital Skills Benefits Businesses, Workers, and our Economy

New research by National Skills Coalition and the  Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta finds that 92% of job postings require either digital skills or skills that are very likely to be digital. Previous NSC research found one-third of workers don’t have the foundational digital skills necessary to enter and thrive in today’s jobs. Together, these findings illustrate how the digital divide isn’t just about access to broadband and hardware – but about access to skills.


Demand for digital skills is high across all industries, including those not always spotlighted in tech discussions, such as manufacturing (93% of job postings require digital skills or skills that are likely to be digital), healthcare (95%), construction (91%), and agriculture (86%). This increased demand leads to higher wages. People whose jobs require just one digital skill earn an average of 23% more than workers in roles requiring no digital skills – an increase of $8,000 in annual income.

Other key findings include:

  • Both small and large firms are looking for workers with digital skills.
  • Younger workers need digital skills training too. Research shows that they may not be able to operate specific technologies used on the job. These workers need opportunities to build bridges from the skills they have - such as using a social media app - to the new skills they need in the workplace. 

In partnership with Comcast, Business Leaders United has released two fact sheets that illustrate the digital skill divide’s effect on small and medium businesses and give business leaders the information and tools they need to work with training providers, community leaders, and policymakers, to close the digital skill divide.

Check them out below: