Charities much better than the public sector on digital skills, report will show

The National Council for Voluntary Organisations will publish a full report on skills gaps in the voluntary sector on Thursday

The voluntary sector lags slightly behind the private sector on digital skills, but is considerably better than the public sector, new research will reveal this week.

The research, to be published by the National Council for Voluntary Organisations, will show that 36 per cent of voluntary sector organisations believe their staff are missing digital skills. 

This compares with 33 per cent of organisations in the private sector and 53 per cent in the public sector.

The figures are derived from data in the government's biennual Employer Skills Survey, which is based on more than 80,000 telephone interviews with employers in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

The NCVO is due to publish full details in a report on skills gaps in the voluntary sector on Thursday.

But some of the key findings have been highlighted in a blog published today by Megan Griffith Gray, head of digital, data and planning at the NCVO.

Gray said the 36 per cent figure resonates with previous research, such as the Lloyds Bank UK Business and Charity Digital Index, which found that 48 per cent of charities did not have five basic digital skills.

She said: "This skills gap is a serious strategic weakness for the sector as we look to adapt and maximise what we can do in a digital age.

"We’re at a crucial time for turning this around. The sector can’t afford to wait and hope things gradually improve over time, or we’ll be left behind and it will be hard to recover."

Gray said the Catalyst coalition consisting of foundations, civil society organisations including the NCVO, digital design agencies and the government aimed to "massively increase the use of digital in the UK's voluntary sector".

One of its focus areas, she added, was to increase the quality and range of support available to help organisations increase their digital skills and knowledge.

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