30 million people across the globe accessed digital skills amid COVID-19

By Rahul Vaimal, Associate Editor
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US-based software giant Microsoft recently announced that helped over 30 million people in 249 countries and territories gain access to digital skills. 

The higher adoption surpassed Microsoft’s initial goal of 25 million last June, encouraging the organization to extend its commitment to help 250,000 companies make a skills-based hire in 2021.

In its Official Microsoft Blog, Microsoft stated that millions of people engaged in online learning courses from GitHub, LinkedIn and Microsoft amid the COVID-19 pandemic in an attempt to prepare themselves for the most in-demand roles such as customer service, project management and data analysis.

“Over the past year, we’ve seen the pandemic hit people who can bear it the least,” said Microsoft President Brad Smith remarked adding that “We are doubling down at LinkedIn and across Microsoft with new work to support a more inclusive skills-based labor market, creating more alternatives, greater flexibility, and accessible learning paths that connect these more readily with new jobs.”

LinkedIn, the business and employment-oriented online service, plans to help 250,000 companies make skills-based hires this year through new and existing hiring products.

The service is expected to provide new ways for job seekers to demonstrate their skills coupled with new tools for employers to connect to candidates based on their skill proficiencies such as;

  • The pilot of LinkedIn Skills Path.
  • New expressive and personalized LinkedIn profile features and
  • Expanded access to LinkedIn’s Skills Graph.

Microsoft is also offering its services such as Career Coach, a Microsoft Teams for Education app powered by LinkedIn in its efforts to support LinkedIn’s work to promote far-reaching digital skills opportunities.

LinkedIn CEO Ryan Roslansky remarked that “For a long time, the way people got hired was based solely on the job they had, the degree they earned or the people they knew. That’s starting to change. Workers are now a better understanding and articulating the skills they have and the skills they need while businesses are looking not just at those familiar credentials but also at the skills that workers from often- overlooked communities have to get the job done. We want to help accelerate that change.”

“Since last June, Microsoft and LinkedIn have helped more than 30 million people worldwide gain access to digital skills, and today we’re extending our commitment to skills by helping 250,000 companies make a skills-based hire in 2021,” Mr. Roslansky added.

Related: Microsoft joins Qatari start-up Snoonu to accelerate digital transformation


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