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Leading Digital Expert To Help Plug National Skills Gap

Chief executive of a leading Southwest digital solutions company, Julie Hawker, has taken up the challenge to boost UK prosperity and productivity by improving the IT skills of its workforce.

Julie, who heads Devon based Cosmic which specialises in digital skills training, was invited to be the region’s industry lead for Future Dot Now, a national initiative dedicated to promoting Essential Digital Skills (EDS).

With almost 22 million people unable to complete 20 essential digital tasks, the need has never been greater for the skills gap to be plugged by initiatives to assist businesses and individuals improve their performances.

In her new role, Julie, who has more than 27 years’ experience in developing and delivering digital skills and inclusion programmes, will work closely with local authorities and employers to plan ways of enhancing digital skills across the Southwest.

She aims to raise awareness of the critical importance of digital competence, inspire action and support the national change programme to equip people with the digital skills they need to thrive in the modern workplace.

“I am delighted to have been invited to contribute to this vital exercise and look forward to effecting real change in the country’s digital performance,” said Julie. “With the UK’s pioneering history in the field of computers and internet, it is disappointing to see that we are falling behind with our workforce capabilities.

“We’ve identified the biggest skills gaps in key sectors, such as using digital productivity tools and ensuring online safety so we will be targeting those for improvement in the first instance.

“I will be encouraging all local businesses and organisations to sign up to the Future Dot Now Charter and show their commitment to a digitally skilled workforce. Let’s work together to close this gap’.