IT: The ECDL graduates in the world of work

Published on: 10/01/2009
Last update: 04/05/2010

Description (short summary):
In 2009 the Italian Computer Association (AICA) collected feedback and information from a sample of about 650 workers who have acquired ECDL certification in Italy. The data resulting from the survey show that the acquisition of qualified basic computer skills (i.e. trough the ECDL programme) is beneficiary for individuals - as employees and as citizens.

80 % of the employees surveyed used a PC at work even before completing the ECDL programme. Half of those surveyed claimed they were motivated to invest in the certification (often as an individual investment in terms of time and money) in the hope of “being more productive and performing better at work”. As an indirect confirmation of the impact of IT training on productivity, more than 90 % claim to have obtained professional benefits from the certification owing to increased autonomy and greater proficiency in using the computer.

Adoption of online services require individuals to overcome strong cultural resistance; a basic training like that provided by ECDL provide the self-confidence in the use of informatics tools which is essential for users to contrast such cultural barriers.

According to a survey conducted in 2008 by the Italian Institute of Statistics (ISTAT), around 41 % of the Italian population in the 25 - 64 year range uses Internet to obtain information from the Public Administration, while over one third accesses government websites to download forms.

The AICA survey shows that acquiring basic computer skills results in a notable increase in the use of eGovernment services: 71 % of those interviewed claims to use the Internet to interact with the Public Administration. Furthermore, ISTAT data quantifies at 27 % the share of Internet users (over 14 years of age) that accesses the web for purchase purposes. Use of online banking systems by individuals between 18 and 65 years of age varies from 9 to 39 %, depending on age groups. Also for these activities, basic computer skills seem to play an important role in guaranteeing a level of confidence creating a broader use of the Internet. The percentage of ECDL holders which makes purchases online is in fact 45 %; ECDL holders using home banking applications vary from 28 to 44 % in the various age groups.

 In conclusion, the data resulting from the survey show that the acquisition of basic computer skills such as those of the ECDL programme provide undeniable added value to individuals and society in general. Certification assures greater autonomy in the workplace contributing to reducing unproductive time related to insufficient knowledge of informatics tools; it provides even the average Italian citizen with the necessary awareness and confidence to use online services so as to take full advantage of interactivity and to raise their knowledge to a comparable level with respect to that of citizens of other major industrialised economies.

Number of pages: 21

ISBN Number: N/A

Nature of documentation: Surveys


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