Like every year, WollyBi has participated in the project “Osservatorio delle Competenze Digitali” which in 2018 has reached its fourth edition. If in the previous years the analysis focused only on ICT professions, the latest release widens the research to every sector, given the great importance of these skills. On the other hand, even the same research methodology of professional figures by companies has profoundly changed over the years, moving ever more on the web. We are witnessing a very fast evolution of the labour market that changes every year in every aspect. And it’s through automatic or semi-automatic analysis of online Big Data, the specific activity in which WollyBi worked in, which shows the possibility of better understanding the changes in progress, producing knowledge, and supporting business processes.
Where does the Labor Market’s Big Data come from?
Big Data (a very large amount of data that would be impossible to analyze “by hand”) arrives from job ads published on the web by companies. Thanks to WollyBI’s methodological analysis, it’s possible to analyze the title and the description of the job ads. The title briefly describes the job position, while the description includes the main competencies or skills required.
The meaningful data are extrapolated and classified according to ISCO classification (The International Standard Classification of Occupations) and the ESCO classification (The European Skills, Competences, Qualifications and Occupations Framework).
According to WollyBi, today it is possible to understand how the Digital Skill Rate (a value that measures the pervasiveness of digital skills) is present in non-ICT professions in three different economic sectors (industry, trade and services), in the macro processes and in the companies’ organizational area, splitting these skills into four different categories.
The categories of Digital Skills
Demand for digital skills is increasing year over year. The increase in demand for these skills led WollyBi to classify them in four groups, in order to get a better overview.
- Application and management: these skills are necessary for those who support the operational and decisional management processes, for example, database management.
- ICT Techniques: technological skills concerning solutions, platforms, and programming languages.
- Base: refers to electronic tools used daily, regardless of the corporate role covered (use of e-mail, file management, etc).
- Information brokerage: these are capabilities related to the use of digital tools for corporate communication (SEO, CMS, social networking).
The relevance of digital skills
In 2017, WollyBi analyzed 544,079 job advertisements on the web, and showed 239 professions not connected to ICT field. The analysis has pointed out a request of hard skills (hard skill rate) of 62.5%, while transversal competences (soft skills) correspond to 34.8%.
In the first case, digital competence is equal to the 21.1%, that corresponds to 13.8% of required skills (Digital Skill Rate). Geographically speaking, the DSR corresponds to 14% at North West, 12% at North East and Centre, and 8% at South and the Islands.
Digital skills in different business areas
In the Industry sector, the DSR increased by 4% from 2014 to 2017, and this increase has affected 20% in Development and Management (Staff, HR, administration, finance, management control) and 17% in Core business (production, planning, research and development, quality control, selling, marketing and communication). The highest DSR observed is in production area, in Research and Development planning and in Marketing and HR.
At sectorial level the digital skills are: Base (41%), Applicative (40%), Information Brokering (12%) and Technical Skills (7%).
In Services sector, the DSR analysis shown a positive trend between 2014 and 2017, this is similar to the industrial sector: 14% Management and support, 13% Core business. DSR plays an important role in Quality control, Planning, research and development, Staff management, Accounting and finance.
At sectorial level, the digital skills highlight the dominance of Base skill (49%), followed by Applicative (25%), Information brokering (16%) and Technical skills (10%).
Commercial sector is the field that has changed least, showing a resistance to digital innovation. In this sector, a positive trend was found only in the Administration area, the Buying area,and General management. In other cases, the trend was negative. Digital skills play an important role concerning Support and management process (13%) compared to Core business processes (12%).
DSR is significant for Management, Accounting, Auditing and Finance, while in Core business DSR is significant in the Planning area, and in Research and development. In conclusion, the digital skills are relevant for Base competence (54%), Applicative (21%), Information brokering (20%) and Technical (4%).
Need less to say, digital skills have become a necessity for many professional figures sought by companies. In some cases, these skills become indispensable. But what does this mean?
In a growing technological and globalized context, the traditional professions are quickly changing and evolving. Therefore, this challenge is to be read more as an opportunity, both for workers and for companies. For the former, there is the necessity to open up to the upgoing changes and to acquire new skills to make one’s professional figure evolve. For companies, however, this change is to be read as the possibility of modernizing production processes but also to invest more in the formation of its resources with projects to develop skills designed ad hoc.
According to recent research presented at the World Economic Forum, carried out by the Boston Consulting Group in collaboration with Burning Glass Technologies, the American company that last December acquired TabulaeX, it is more cost-effective for companies to investing in training than looking for new skilled resources. This is a further confirmation that will guide companies throughfuture steps.