More needs to be done to educate young people about careers in the digital world, this National Careers Week.
63% of students across the UK believe more needs to be done at schools, colleges and universities to educate them about the number of careers in the digital world.
That’s according to a survey that we carried out, in which over one thousand 13-21-year-olds took part.
The figures have been released at the start of National Careers Week (4th-9th March) - a national event dedicated to promoting quality careers advice in schools and colleges.
The survey also revealed that:
- 90% would benefit from learning about digital marketing/coding in schools, colleges and universities
- 45% feel pressured into choosing a traditional career
- 23% say they mostly feel pressured into choosing a traditional career by teachers.
Becky Simms, CEO at Reflect Digital, said: “These figures are worrying and there is a lot happening already to change this - the Gatsby Benchmarks help promote best practice careers advice in schools, but I’m not sure it is enough.
“From the work I do in schools the pace of change is slow and yet the speed of career change is fast. A study by Dell Technologies says that in 2030, 85% of the jobs we will be doing then do not exist currently.
“If this becomes a reality our education system will be really left behind.
“As we progress fast towards being a ‘digital first’ nation, we need to ensure we are investing at the very beginning of the digital journey and developing the right skills to support the future digital economy.
“We cannot expect the onus to be on the teaching staff to know about all of the varying career opportunities out there, we need businesses to engage more with schools.”
In light of this, Becky is calling on the Government to look at a tax incentive scheme to help support businesses should they wish to offer their time to inspire the next generation.
Becky adds: “In order to get businesses to engage more with schools, there needs to be more of an incentive to do so.
“We do a lot of work with schools, colleges and universities but we are playing the long game, firstly to help promote our industry and secondly to help attract talent.
“The career opportunities in our digital sector are endless and keep evolving, roles are becoming more and more specialised, continually offering more opportunity.
“The roles that exist will really suit the youth of today and their experience of the internet from a very young age, but the awareness is not there of what opportunities are out there.”
Worryingly the figures show that teachers pressure students the most into choosing a traditional career.
Becky said: “I think these statistics demonstrate perfectly the lack of awareness that teachers have of current careers.
“I don’t think this is something that we can blame teachers for, but there needs to be a solution to enable teachers to be up to date with career trends and what the roles and responsibilities look like in the industries that naturally lead on from their subject.”