Just 29% of Irish people believe schools are equipping children with the necessary skills for the digital era, according to a survey commissioned by Ricoh Ireland.
Ricoh commissioned Censuswide to survey 500 workers in Irish businesses with 100+ employees each in December 2016. The survey found that only a third of respondents feel that Irish schools have access to the range of modern technologies that will help students to become digitally proficient.
The survey did find that confidence in Irish third-level education is higher with 64% believing that graduates are digitally prepared to enter the workplace. Nevertheless, 50% of respondents believe that the Irish education system lags behind its European counterparts when it comes to the provision of digital technology skills and training. Just 22% are confident that it doesn’t.
The Ricoh survey also shows that there is pressure on employers to do more when it comes to digital training. Just 49% of office workers believe their employer is doing enough to develop their digital skills. That is despite the fact that more than two-thirds (70%) are confident that their employer understands the role technology can play in employee well-being.
The research also found that digital transformation is making Irish office workers worry about job security. One-in-five (19%) of respondents said they are concerned that their job could come into competition with service automation or artificial intelligence technologies.
Commenting on the research, Director at Ricoh Ireland and UK, Chas Moloney said, "It’s no exaggeration to say that digital skills are becoming as essential as reading and writing and our education bodies need to reflect that in their syllabuses. Children need to learn digital skills from a very young age and that must progress right through their journey in the education system. These are the people that are going to be driving our economy in years to come and we must ensure that they have the skills they need to do that."