Microsoft Corp. has announced a new global skills initiative geared towards bringing more digital skills to 25 million people worldwide by the end of the year. File Photo: IANS
Microsoft Corp. has announced a new global skills initiative geared towards bringing more digital skills to 25 million people worldwide by the end of the year. File Photo: IANS

Microsoft set to help 25 million people worldwide acquire new digital skills

By IOL Tech reporter Time of article published Jul 2, 2020

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Microsoft Corp. has announced a new global skills initiative geared towards bringing more digital skills to 25 million people worldwide by the end of the year.

The announcement comes in response to the global economic crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

This initiative, detailed on the Official Microsoft Blog, includes immediate steps to help those looking to reskill and pursue an in-demand job and brings together every part of the company, combining existing and new resources from LinkedIn, GitHub and Microsoft. This includes: 

The use of data to identify in-demand jobs and the skills needed to fill them.
Free access to learning paths and content to help people develop the skills these positions require.
Low-cost certifications and free job-seeking tools to help people who develop these skills pursue new jobs.

This initiative will build be built on data and digital technology and is expected to start with data on jobs and skills from the LinkedIn Economic Graph. 

It also provides free access to content in LinkedIn Learning, Microsoft Learn and the GitHub Learning Lab, and adds those with Microsoft Certifications and LinkedIn job seeking tools. 

These resources can all be accessed at a central location, opportunity.linkedin.com, and will be broadly available online in four languages: English, French, German and Spanish.

Microsoft is also backing the effort with $20 million in cash grants to help nonprofit organisations worldwide assist society's most vulnerable. 

Microsoft has recently announced it is creating a new learning app in Microsoft Teams designed to help employers skill and upskill new and current employees as people return to work and as the economy adds jobs.

“COVID-19 has created both a public health and an economic crisis, and as the world recovers, we need to ensure no one is left behind,” said Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella. “Today, we’re bringing together resources from Microsoft inclusive of LinkedIn and GitHub to reimagine how people learn and apply new skills — and help 25 million people facing unemployment due to COVID-19 prepare for the jobs of the future.”

“The biggest brunt of the current downturn is being borne by those who can afford it the least,” said Microsoft President Brad Smith. “Unemployment rates are spiking for people of colour and women, as well as younger workers, people with disabilities and individuals with less formal education. Our goal is to combine the best in technology with stronger partnerships with governments and nonprofits to help people develop the skills needed to secure a new job.”

IOL TECH

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