How nanodegree programmes could help your workforce take on the digital revolution

Why a crash course in flying cars might be time well spent for your employee in an ever-shifting digital world…

With the rise of the Internet, the opportunity to advance your career or become an entrepreneur has never been greater. At the same time, studies show that by 2020 almost one million tech jobs may remain unfilled in Europe.

The digital revolution has created unprecedented demand for technical skills, which the current educational system is not prepared to keep up with. While traditional models of education such as the three-year undergraduate degree provide graduates with a solid theoretical background as well as teaching them how to learn, they don’t always teach the newest, in-demand skills that are often required to succeed in the workplaces of the future.

Why choose a nanodegree programme?

Nanodegree programmes, such as those offered by online learning platform Udacity, are project-based online learning programmes that allow you or your employees to gain essential digital skills in 12 months or less. Nanodegree students build projects to apply their new skills and can add final projects to a career portfolio to showcase to potential employers. Students learn from expert instructors, receive one-on-one coaching and enjoy access to an online community of like-minded learners.

It’s key to be adaptable and be willing to learn. No matter what you’re working on, your knowledge and skills can no longer be stagnant in an increasingly dynamic and global world. With technology changing so quickly, the skills you master one year may not be relevant in the next. Your skills won’t be in demand forever, so it’s vital to have a strong set of skills which allow you to learn and adapt in this lifelong learning journey.

This applies to both you as a founder and for your staff. Never stop learning and promote this ethos in your team. In today’s everchanging world, the key is to remain open to new types of learning – shorter, more intensive courses will ensure your employees remain at the top of their game when new technologies emerge.

But what are these emerging digital skills?

It’s easy to feel lost when considering the impact of innovative tech on our lives, but there is particular need for wider skills within the artificial intelligence (AI), data science and transportation sectors.

AI is transforming the world around us, with many fearing the worst. It’s undeniable that AI will result in some job losses, but what’s often less talked about are the jobs and new opportunities it will create for individuals and businesses. Its potential has yet to be fully realised, and those who invest in upskilling their AI knowledge now are sure to reap rewards in the long-term.

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Likewise, they say data is the new oil, and though US tech giants may seem to hold a monopoly, there are hidden data mines to be found for the intrepid. The fact is much of this data is unstructured and difficult to interpret; learning to analyse it could uncover invaluable insights and create innovative solutions that could take your business to the next level.

While the ground infrastructure is one-dimensional, the sky is three-dimensional, which opens up countless new mobility options. For example, you could have virtual highways in the sky and stack them vertically to eliminate traffic intersection entirely.

Air travel, if we can get it right – that is, ensure that it’s safe, affordable, quiet and regulated – will revolutionise our transportation system. The challenge is to build vehicles and systems that people want to use and trust.

These may sound like futuristic ideas, but it’s important to think about tomorrow’s skills today. Udacity nanodegree programmes aren’t just for future-gazing however, there are plenty of nanodegree programmes for the skills employers need right now. So, whether you think your business could benefit from bolstering its robotics knowledge, boosting its virtual reality capabilities, or just brushing up on digital marketing, investing in a nanodegree programme could be a great option for you or your employees.

Find out more about Udacity’s nanodegree programmes.