Google launches digital skills platform in Malta

Grigoris Zarifopoulos, Country Manager Greece, Malta and Cyprus, Google announces the launch of Digital Workshop, a free digital skills online training platform available to everyone

25 April 2017, 4:11pm
Grigoris Zarifopoulos, Country Manager Greece, Malta and Cyprus, Google launching the Digital Workshop in Malta
Grigoris Zarifopoulos, Country Manager Greece, Malta and Cyprus, Google launching the Digital Workshop in Malta
Google today launched the Digital Workshop programme in Malta, a new online platform offering free training to everyone, from SMBs to professionals and students who want  to grow their digital skills and increase their knowledge in digital marketing. This new platform can be accessed at  https://learndigital.withgoogle.com/digitalworkshop-mt/.

The digital skills gap remains one of the big challenges for the countries in the European Union. According to European Commission, almost half of the EU population (47%) is not properly digitally skilled, yet in the near future 90% of jobs will require some level of digital skills. The EC estimates that 756,000 jobs will go unfilled by 2020 because of this skills gap. In Malta according to the Digital Economy and Society Index  (DESI), 21.3% of the population has never used the internet (EU average: 14.5%) and when it comes to digital skills, only 49% individuals have basic digital skills, decreasing from 52% in 2015 (EU average: 56%).

It is to help tackle this digital skills gap that Google has created the Digital Workshop platform, available for everyone in Malta. Google’s Digital Workshop allows anyone to get their personalised digital tune-up online from anywhere at any time. The platform covers over 20 topics explained through digestible action-oriented and plainly spoken lessons. From how to build a presence online, to running social media marketing or using the opportunities offered by mobile phones to attract more clients, and much more. Users can choose the topics they want to learn about, or complete the whole online course, receiving a certification from Google and IAB Europe.

“We believe technology can be a force for good, helping students and professionals to succeed in their career and businesses. As technology and the web play a bigger role in our lives, we at Google see it as our job to provide the tools to help people make the most of this opportunity.  We have already provided digital skills training to 2 million Europeans over the past 2 years and today we are happy to make our Digital Workshop programme available to everyone in Malta. Whether you’re a student looking for your first job, a small business trying to attract new customers or a blogger interested in promoting your contents across the world, I’d like to encourage you to take advantage of the free training we are making available today”, said Grigoris Zarifopoulos, Country Manager Greece, Malta and Cyprus, Google.

Many people have already started to make the most of the digital opportunity. Making use of the free training offered by Google, Antonios Fiorakis, the founder of Incrediblue, an online booking platform for boating holidays, learnt about the fundamentals of digital analytics: “The training helped me measure how our users behave. I was amazed by the accuracy of data insights. I discovered details about my customers that helped me grow my sales,” confirmed Fiorakis.

The Digital Workshop is delivered in collaboration with relevant partners organisations including Malta National Skills Council (NSC) and eSkills Malta Foundation.

Prof. Joseph Cilia, National Skills Council, said: “A more dynamic economic sector, such as the one being experienced in all Europe, further emphasizes the need for more responsive education and training players. In the Maltese context, the size of the labour force and the challenges of industry to find the right skills is also magnified by its insularity.  The way forward for our education and lifelong learning systems to be more effective, create systems for recognition of other forms of learning, expose young students to the world of work and possibly have more refined skills forecasting models to assist policy makers.”

Carm Cachia, eSkills Malta Foundation, said: “According to the latest DESI EU Index 2017 Malta scored very favourably on the Use of Internet, with 79% reading the News online, 90% using it for entertainment, 48% for video calls, 82% social networks, and 60% for Banking and Shopping.  Nevertheless most of the Maltese SMEs are still not selling their products online.  Selling online increases business exponentially and transforms a business, no matter how small, into a digitally smart company.  Collectively this increases business activity and social wealth in Malta.  As regards to Human Capital we are below average and only 49% of the citizens have the Basic Digital Skills! Malta must take advantage of initiatives, like the Google Digital Workshop, because it is ideal, free and flexibly.  It addresses the digital skills needed to thrive in this social and commercial society.”

All businesses as well as individuals interested in expanding their digital knowledge, can sign up for free to attend the online courses available through the platform.