Canadian Manufacturing

Salesforce report reveals Canadians feel unequipped for the future of work

However, the Salesforce Index also reveals that younger respondents have the greatest confidence and ambition to learn new skills.

February 8, 2022   by CM Staff

TORONTO — On Feb. 8, Salesforce published its Canadian Digital Skills Index revealing a growing digital skills crisis and the urgent need for action. The Index is based on Canadian workers reporting their readiness to acquire key digital skills.

Over three-quarters of Canadians (81%) don’t feel equipped to learn the digital skills needed by businesses now and even more (86%) don’t feel equipped for the future. Despite 73% of survey respondents planning to learn new skills in the next five years, only 14% are actively involved in digital skills learning and training programs now.

Canada’s digital skills gap
This gap is a concern – but it also presents an opportunity. With companies around the world rapidly transitioning to digital-first models, the demand for employees with digital skills has soared.

The Salesforce Index’s overall score for digital readiness, assessed in terms of preparedness, skill level, access, and active participation in digital upskilling, is currently only 23 out of 100 in Canada. The countries represented in the global survey ranged from 63 to 15, highlighting that while certain countries feel more digitally ready than others, there is an urgent need for global investment to close the digital skills gap and build a more inclusive workforce.

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Everyday digital skills don’t translate to the workplace
Everyday skills such as social media and web navigation don’t necessarily translate to the core workplace digital skills needed by business to drive recovery, resilience and growth.

More than half of all Gen Z respondents (58%) say they have ‘advanced’ social media skills — supporting the stereotype of digital mastery among the younger generation — but less than a quarter (17%) believe they have the ‘advanced’ digital workplace skills needed by businesses
now.

Generational skills gap
However, the Salesforce Index also reveals that younger respondents have the greatest confidence and ambition to learn new skills — 17% of Gen Z is actively learning and training for skills needed over the next five years compared to 8% of Baby Boomers.

The most important digital skills needed by businesses today
According to the Salesforce Canada Index, skills in collaboration technology are viewed as the most important skills needed by businesses today and over the next five years. But despite respondents’ prowess with everyday collaboration technology like social media, only 19% of Canadians rate themselves ‘advanced’ in those collaboration technology skills needed specifically for the workplace.