Modern life could not function without technology, it’s that simple.
Every home, office and public space is becoming more and more digitally dependent, in so many different ways. A recent ONS report found that over three quarters (78%) of UK adults now use the internet on a daily basis – and that number is growing.
When you begin to grasp the scale of digital development, it’s clear that technology is already forging new paths for education and business throughout the UK and beyond. Digital is by far the fastest growing sector in the UK, driving economic growth at a time when many other industries are just about getting to their feet. The job market for tech-savvy talent is growing at a similar rate, particularly in the North.
At a local level, part of the challenge is ensuring that the next generation of talented professionals are developing the right skills to succeed in digital roles. More collaboration between businesses and educational bodies is needed to achieve this. It is the duty of both to teach students how to apply their knowledge as part of commercial projects.
As part of the Employer Advisory Board at Oldham College, CandidSky jumped at the chance to offer a work experience placement for hungry students looking to gain an insight into the digital opportunities available to them. The college has already invested heavily in state-of-the-art digital facilities geared towards ambitious web developers, graphic artists, digital marketers and more, which makes quality work experience the logical next step for their progression.
Kate Fallon, work experience coordinator for digital technology at Oldham College, explained the importance of teaming up with businesses in the local area:
“The majority of our students are local people, so quality work placements with local businesses is really invaluable experience for them. It’s a great way to network, to meet people who have been in their position and who can share their own experience of how they got to where they are. We hear so much about the ‘digital age’ and the seemingly endless growth of that sector, so it’s our job to prepare our students to be able to earn a living in an increasingly digital world.
“Whether it’s graphic design, web development, software or hardware engineering – we’re looking to put talented students in touch with the right kind of people who can help them progress once their time with us is drawing to a close. It’s also great way of putting theory into practice and showcasing what these students can actually do by working on projects.”
At CandidSky, we are also doing our bit to banish the stereotypical ‘experience of work experience’. Too often this consists of making the brews, sitting on the sidelines and not getting too involved with the practical side of things. A digital focus is a great opportunity to put this right, and to give students more scope of the opportunities and job roles that are actually out there.
That’s how you inspire people to become creative innovators, after all – by first showing them the possibilities of what they can achieve.