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Finns are among the world's leading users of digital services. According to the recent Digital Skills Report, 79% of Finns have good digital skills, and as many as 84% feel that they will keep up to date with digitalisation in the coming years. In other words, our society has a good foundation for building digital services. Nonetheless, even skilled people often need support in using digital devices and services. The crucial question is how well one can apply and develop their own skills.

These results are found in the Digital Skills Report, published on 2 December 2022. The report is the first to build an overall picture of the Finnish people's digital skills and digitalisation experiences. It brings together studies on digital competence and complements them with the results of recent interview surveys.

The most important skills are the ability to learn and the courage for experimentation

Despite good digital skills, 39% of Finns often need support in using digital services, and 14% feel that they are not as competent with digital services and the Internet as Finns in general.

The most common forms of digital support are digital skills learned at work and advice from family and friends. The digital world is also changing constantly. This is why digital competence must be maintained and improved.

"Even digitally skilled people may sometimes need support, especially on matters that have a decisive impact on their own lives. Digital skills are not static; new things need to be learned constantly. The most important thing is the courage to adopt and try out new devices and services. We need digital courage whenever we encounter a new or updated digital service. Everyday life will become increasingly digital, and keeping up with it will depend on people's ability to learn new skills and on their courage to try new digital devices and services", says Minna Piirainen from the Digital and Population Data Services Agency.

Digitalised society requires digital competence

According to the recently completed Digital Skills Report, Finns feel that everyone is expected to know how to handle their personal affairs digitally.

"Society is becoming more digital at a fast pace. Transactions with authorities and other such things can still be done face-to-face, but adults and elderly people in particular feel that using digital services is already the norm", says Senior Specialist Henriikka Eloluoto from the Digital and Population Data Services Agency.

However, self-evaluation of one's own competences is not based only on a person's age. The School Health Promotion Study showed that almost one in ten young people have difficulties with the equipment used in their studies. On the other hand, many elderly people are quite happy to start using new technology.

The Digital Skills Report highlights that in reality, many people lack sufficient opportunities for learning new things: They aren't given time for gaining competence and failures made during training aren't tolerated. The surrounding general attitude can also often prevent learning new things.

"Both the feeling of having adequate skills and digital courage in general are the sum of the person, the devices and the environment. Even a small disappointment or failure may cause a person to lose interest in developing their own competence", Eloluoto summarises.

What is the Digital Skills Report?

The Digital and Population Data Services Agency publishes its first Digital Skills Report 2.12.2022.

The report is based on 45 indicators dealing with the digitalisation of society as well as the digitalisation experiences and the digital competence of individuals. The report builds an overall picture of the digital skills of Finns. It brings together studies on digital competence and complements them with the results of recent interview surveys. From now on, the report will be published annually.

HT

Source: Digital and Population Data Services Agency

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