Sixty-one percent of Americans believe that today’s workforce is plagued by a skills gap, but do not see themselves as part of the problem, according to new data released today. The Udemy Skills Gap Index, an independent survey commissioned by Udemy, the leading global marketplace for learning and teaching online, and conducted by ResearchNow, surveyed 1,000 Americans between the ages of 18 and 65. The survey polled consumers to determine their thoughts, perceptions and attitudes toward not only the skills they believe they possess, but also how these skills impact their professional lives. The resulting data revealed that despite a perception among American workers that a skills gap exists, 95 percent consider themselves to be either qualified or overqualified for the positions that they personally hold.
Photo – http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20140916/146619-INFO
The “skills gap” refers to a disparity between the skills Americans have and those employers are seeking. The revelation that most Americans do not believe the skills gap applies to them adds new dimension to ManpowerGroup’s recent “Talent Shortage Survey,” which indicated 40 percent of U.S. employers report difficulty in filling vacant positions with qualified employees. Additionally, despite California’s status as a global leader in technology and innovation, the survey also uncovers new insight into how workers in the tech capital of the world feel about their tech skills -or lack thereof.
The Udemy Skills Gap Index uncovered key findings into mindsets of American workers, including:
A Gender Disconnect – A measurable gender disconnect in perceptions of the skills gap exists, with 68 percent of men believing in its existence as compared to 55 percent of women.
The Role of Higher Ed – While almost half of Americans say their higher education helped them get their first job, more than a third believe they use less than 10 percent of what they learned in college in the workplace.
A Generation Gap – A majority of millennials (53 percent) feel that they have already mastered the skills their jobs require of them, as compared to 43 percent of baby boomers.
Job Seeker Motivation – Thirty-six percent of people seeking a new job report taking no extra action (such as taking an online course, attending networking events or visiting a recruiter) to boost their chances of getting hired.
“These findings indicate that despite a widespread recognition that the skills gap exists, American employees share an ‘It’s not me, it’s you” mentality,” said Dennis Yang, CEO of Udemy. “The data also shows that while higher education may be effective at helping individuals score their first job, skills and knowledge learned at academic institutions become obsolete as Americans change professions and skill-set requirements change. We’re beginning to see workers take ownership of their own skill-set development with particular emphasis on developing technology skills, but in today’s competitive economic climate, it’s simply not enough.”
The survey also reveals that California’s residents are insecure when it comes to confidence in their own technology skills, especially surprising given that California is the established technological hub of the country:
Nearly one in three Californians (32 percent) cite tech skills as their biggest on-the-job weakness.
A majority of Californians (59 percent) who lost out on a job or promotion identify lacking tech skills as their main problem.
Forty-five percent of Californians admit to lying about their experience and skillsets on resumes, LinkedIn profiles and in interviews.
“New technology is raising the bar for success in the workplace. A majority of survey respondents say they need new skills to do their jobs, most often new technical skills. In today’s rapidly changing environment, new skills are needed to get jobs, promotions and higher compensation.” said economist James Bessen of Boston University.
To download a complete set of survey results and an analysis of the findings, please visit http://press.udemy.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/09/Udemy-Skills-Gap-Report-09162014.pdf
Udemy is the leading marketplace for online learning, offering people everywhere the opportunity to advance their careers, change professions, develop their personal passions or simply learn something new.