Refreshing your skills in the time of COVID

The unprecedented pandemic that has been inflicted on the world population this year has changed a lot of things. Foremost amongst those is the way people work. Companies have had to deal with an incredible shift in business is an amazingly short period of time, from the hospitality sector effectively shutting down to holidays and the travel industry being decimated. This has meant that a record number of people are now working from home, and an even larger number have sadly been made redundant.

Government statistics in the UK show that this year included the largest quarterly rise in redundancies since the global financial crash of 2008/9. Employment levels for 16-24 and 65+ year olds have dropped by over 375,000, and the number of people claiming unemployment benefits currently stands at 1.5 million. With the prospect of vaccines hopeful but uncertain, and nearly 10 million jobs still furloughed, it is easy to imagine these numbers rising in the coming months.

To put a positive spin on this, and in order to stand out from the most overcrowded jobs marketplace for many years, now is perfect time to hone or refresh your skills, or even learn new ones! It’s more important than ever to know what roles are in-demand, and what skills those jobs require. Open University owned online training company Future Learn has put together an invaluable interactive skills matching tool to guide people looking to retrain, reskill or rethink their career options, helping you to discover the most in demand careers right now, and showing you what you need to succeed.

This tool takes the ten most in-demand jobs in the UK and globally, and matches them to the skills most commonly mentioned in job descriptions. It was created by an extensive review of Google searches and trends over the 12 months prior to the pandemic, and mapped into a useful online tool that anyone can use. Each skill is matched to a course that the user can take, or further reading on the subject if required. Not only can job seekers find out the skills they will need to apply for these coveted positions, but those unsure of their next career move can see how their existing skills might lead them to a role they hadn’t considered. 

If you’re feeling the bite of the pandemic on your employment prospects, have a look at changing your skillset. Nobody knows what the future holds, and you might find it was the best decision you made.