7 Reasons To Develop Your Digital Skills

By Frank Bolger - Last update

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The digital revolution is already well underway and many companies and individuals have long been enjoying its benefits. However, not everyone has jumped on board just yet: almost one in five Irish adults have never used the internet, and close to one-third only use it once per week. This is something the Irish government is attempting to address on a continuous basis, but why should the average person worry about developing their digital literacy skills

Well, there are plenty of reasons – here are just a handful of them:

1) Stay Connected
Digital media tends to be social. It connects people and allows them to instantaneously share information with friends and family who may live on the other side of the world.

2) Access to Services
News, shopping, bookings, banking – if you have basic digital skills and internet access, the world is at your fingertips, whenever you need it.

3) Parenting
Digital media will be central to the lives of future generations. Most children of primary school age can now use the web and many have their own social media accounts, which they can access 24/7 on their phones or other mobile devices. Responsible parenting now extends to the online activities of children and so it is vital that parents keep abreast of the latest digital developments.

4) Growth of the Digital Economy
Digital already contributes 4.4 per cent to Ireland s GDP ( 7.1bn). This is growing by 16 per cent per year more than 10 times the rate of growth of the economy as a whole.

5) For Business
Whether you run your own business, are thinking of setting one up, or are working for a company, having an online presence has become a prerequisite for growth and success. According to the Minister for Communications, Pat Rabitte: ‘The evidence is that small companies who engage in online trading grow twice as fast and employment increases if they exploit the technology optimally.’

6) For Marketing
Digital marketing is more cost effective, immediate, and interactive than traditional marketing platforms. Digital media allows businesses to interact with customers and track their responses to see what elements of their marketing campaign are working. They can therefore work in real-time and can get their products and services in front of the public at the click of a mouse button.

7) Government Backing
In order to get more companies to investigate the massive potential of digital media, the government recently rolled out its National Digital Strategy. The first phase of this will be rolled out next year and up to 2000 companies will be given 2,500 e-commerce vouchers to spend on e-commerce trading sites or some digital endeavour that could drive change in the business – whether an app, a new software system, or a social media marketing strategy.


Frank Bolger

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