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'It's a worry' - Suffolk workers could be earning £12K less every year due to lack of digital skills

PUBLISHED: 14:41 03 June 2019

Almost half of East of England residents lack the full essential digital skills set required for the modern workplace, according to the latest Lloyds Bank Consumer Digital Index. Photo: Getty Images.

Almost half of East of England residents lack the full essential digital skills set required for the modern workplace, according to the latest Lloyds Bank Consumer Digital Index. Photo: Getty Images.

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As society moves at lightning speed towards an ever more digital future many workers across the region are at risk of being left behind, a new report has revealed.

Matt Hubbard, Lloyds Banking Group’s Ambassador for the East of England. Photo: Lloyds.Matt Hubbard, Lloyds Banking Group’s Ambassador for the East of England. Photo: Lloyds.

Almost half of the people living in the East of England lack the digital skills employers demand.

The latest Lloyds Bank Consumer Digital Index revealed 48% of residents do not have essential skills for the modern workplace.

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The study discovered many people in the region were unable to use digital skills at work to problem solve, communicate or operate safely online.

Matt Hubbard, the banking group's ambassador for the East of England, admitted the figures were a cause for concern.

"It's a worry to see so many residents in the region struggle with the essential digital skills that employers need," he said.

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"The responsibility for improving the region's skills does not fall solely to individuals, but extends to the government, large businesses and the charity sector, who must work together to help upskill residents.

"Lloyds Bank is committed to helping Britain prosper, and as part of that we are working with Google to deliver digital skills training to individuals, business and charities across the region."

Those workers who lack the necessary digital skills are more likely to earn less money and stunt their career prospects.

Nationally, the study discovered those workers with digital skills earn on average £12,500 more per year than those without.

Despite the lack of skills and increasing demand from employers, almost two thirds, 63%, of workers have not received any digital skills training from their employer - including more than half of those in managerial roles and almost three-quarters of manual workers.

Those working in manufacturing have the lowest level of digital skills, 36%, compared to 80% in the finance, insurance and property sectors according to the report.

The research also found one in four residents from the East of England lack confidence in their digital skills, while a further 9% are offline completely.

Of those not online the majority point to fears about data security as the main reason why they avoid the internet.

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