By Reon Janse van Rensburg
The Microsoft Corporation on Tuesday announced a new global skills initiative aimed at 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. The gigantic corporation believes that one of the best ways to help the economy rebound and reduce the staggering rate of unemployment is to help workers learn new digital skills. The initiative will blend new and existing resources from LinkedIn, GitHub and Microsoft, and it will provide low-cost Microsoft Certifications.
Microsoft is dropping the cost of Microsoft Certifications exams to $15 or roughly R255 (if users “self-attest” that their employment was impacted by Covid-19). Usually, these exams cost more than $100 (R1 700). Participants can schedule an exam from September until the end of the year, and they’ll have until 31 March to complete it.
This initiative consists of comprehensive technology that will build on data and digital technology. It starts with data on jobs and skills from the LinkedIn Economic Graph. It provides free access to content in LinkedIn Learning, Microsoft Learn and the GitHub Learning Lab, and couples those with Microsoft Certifications and LinkedIn job-seeking tools. These resources can all be accessed at a central location and will be available online in four languages: English, French, German and Spanish.
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 obtain these skills pursue new jobs.
A new learning app in Microsoft Teams will help employers upskill new and existing employees. LinkedIn Learning, Microsoft Learn and third-party trainers will provide the class content. Microsoft says this is especially important because employer investment in training has declined and stagnated over the past two decades.
“Creating opportunity for every member of the global workforce drives everything we do at LinkedIn,” said LinkedIn CEO Ryan Roslansky. “As a part of the Microsoft ecosystem, we have the unique ability to help job seekers around the world — especially those who have been disproportionately disadvantaged during the Covid-19 crisis — gain the skills and find the jobs they deserve. We’re proud to be bringing the right data about what the jobs and skills of the future will be to create the right learning paths to help 25 million job seekers find their next opportunities.”
Any person or company that wishes to make use of this training opportunity can visit LinkedIn via the following link – https://opportunity.linkedin.com/en-us and more information can be found via the Microsoft website – https://news.microsoft.com/skills/
Job seekers across the world are turning training from Microsoft and its non-profit partners into new, fulfilling careers. As the global economy continues to change, digital skills are more important than ever.