UK Economy to Gain £12m by Investing in Digital Skills

A report from the Tinder Foundation and Go On UK reveals that investing in digital skills could produce £12bn for the economy over the next 10 years.

The research estimated that if the 12.6 million UK adults without basic skills were taught how to use computers the productivity benefits would produce billions in savings for the economy.

CEO of the Tinder Foundation, Helen Milner, said: "Digital is bringing about an industrial revolution, with all jobs and workplaces underpinned by digital technology.

"It's vital that we provide people with the skills they need to find employment and to use digital technology on a day-to-day basis in their work, leading to major rewards not only for individuals, but also for national productivity."

Go On UK and the Tinder Foundation said investment in digital skills is not enough however. They said the UK's investment in skills needs to run alongside David Cameron's recent pledge to invest £1.7bn in broadband over the next five years.

Some organisations believe companies across the IT sector should be doing more to collaborate and address the growing skills gap.

Research revealed that 23% of adults across the UK cannot achieve five of the most basic skills such as information management, communication, transactions, problem solving and creation.

CEO of Go On UK, Rachel Neaman, said: "Universal basic digital skills would give government a direct cash return of £1.8bn in increased tax receipts, lower jobseeker allowance payments and NHS primary care savings, in addition to the individual and societal benefits it would provide.

"As we look ahead to the spending review, we cannot afford to ignore the direct correlation between basic digital skills and the huge potential savings to UK plc."

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