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Top 10 digital skills courses

Browse our top ten free digital skills courses to enhance your employability and career prospects for digital roles in the modern workplace.

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As our lives increasingly take place in the digital sphere, we’re seeing digital transformation take place in existing industries and job functions, as well as newly emerging roles and business areas built entirely around digital skills. The coronavirus pandemic is only likely to exacerbate the need for digital skills, as new digital-first work patterns become the norm.

According to the UK Government, 82% of advertised job roles require digital skills. There is also an earnings premium– those with digital skills earn 29% more than those without. The more advanced the digital skills, the larger this figure.  

Additionally, the likes of the WEF and Deloitte have predicted that, for those with advanced digital skills, ‘the Fourth Industrial Revolution’ will create a spate of new digital job opportunities for those that have up-to-date digital knowledge and skills.

We’ve brought together a list of our top ten free digital skills courses below to help you improve your employability and career prospects for digital roles and the workplace of the future.

Learn about Current Digital Workplace Trends with the University of Leeds and the Institute of Coding

Do you keep hearing people say things like ‘the Fourth Industrial Revolution’, ‘big data’, and ‘workplace automation’ but aren’t quite sure exactly what they mean?

This course is designed to help you find out the answers – and how they’re relevant to you. You’ll learn about digital skills necessary for a successful career today, and which might become relevant in years to come.

All of this will be considered in the wider context of how technology is changing the world more broadly.

Blended Learning Essentials: Developing Digital Skills with the University of Leeds and the UCL Institute of Education

One of the great challenges we collectively face is the digital skills gap. Employers are unable to find prospective employees equipped with the necessary digital skills to fill key roles. This has wider ramifications for the health of the economy.

As more and more jobs come to depend on these skills, closing the digital skills gap will become increasingly pertinent. Teachers and trainers in the vocational education sector will play a key role in this, equipping learners with the digital skills needed to succeed as part of the modern workforce.

This course will help those in any part of vocational educational sector best impart essential digital skills. These include managing a personal online identity, digital content creation, and tools and techniques for collaborative learning.

Digital Skills: Grow Your Career with Accenture

Professional services firm Accenture has teamed up with FutureLearn to offer a suite of key digital skills courses. Digital Skills: Grow Your Career is an introductory course for those who want to understand how digital skills can help them progress in their career.

Starting by considering what exactly ‘digital’ means, the course will consider how digital skills underpin modern careers and how technology is changing the world of work. You’ll also learn practical skills, such as how to promote yourself or your business online, and how to demonstrate relevant digital skills to employers.

Digital Skills: Digital Marketing with Accenture

Marketing is one of the professional disciplines that has been most affected by the digital revolution. It has become more precise, technical, and measurable than ever before.

Accordingly, marketers need to be equipped with digital skills to succeed within this new paradigm. These skills include, but are not limited to, search engine optimisation (SEO), pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, and using data to target campaigns to consumers.

This digital marketing course will help learners to understand how different digital marketing methods can deliver value to an organisation, and how to design a comprehensive digital marketing strategy.

Digital Skills for Teachers: Making Technology Work for You with the Girls’ Day School Trust

This continuing professional development course is designed to help teachers boost their digital skills, so they are able to embrace new digital teaching tools and methods.

For younger generations, digital skills will be the cornerstone of future employability. Accordingly, school classrooms will be increasingly geared towards preparing students to enter the digital economy, and teachers must be equipped with the skills to teach effectively in this environment.

On this course, learners will explore what role new digital technologies can play in the classroom, and how to gain confidence in using them. It will also consider how to engage in meaningful professional development related to digital skills and build successful digital relationships.

Digital Skills: Retail with Accenture

Whether it’s the harnessing of big data, automation, or the impact of digital marketing, modern technologies have changed the retail industry beyond recognition.

This course considers how these different digital retail disciplines can be brought together to improve customer experience, personalisation, and, ultimately, sales. It will outline the digital skills that underpin these, looking at how to prepare employees for the new digital retail paradigm.

Learners will also discover how phenomena like artificial intelligence, connected devices, and automation will come to shape the retail industry of the future.

Career Credentials: Evidence Your Expertise in Digital Literacy with Deakin University.

In the modern workplace, digital literacy skills are fast becoming as essential as traditional literacy.

Alongside fundamental digital skills, this means being able to use technology to find, use, and share information. It means being able to assess the credibility of this information, looking out for misleading, untrue, and malicious content. And it means understanding the importance of data security.

On this course, you’ll learn practical strategies to build career-relevant digital literacy skills and explore how to demonstrate these when applying for roles. These skills will be considered in the context of trends, challenges, and opportunities arising from new digital workplace technologies.

Digital skills: Web Analytics with Accenture

Web analytics allows us to measure and analyse user actions in ways that give us unprecedented insight into their behaviour.

Using these insights, we can gauge the effectiveness of digital assets and campaigns, we can segment audiences to better target different groups, and we can predict how they might behave in the future. These insights can be used to continually improve products, services, or whole businesses.

No wonder, then, that web analytics skills are among the most in-demand from employers. This Google Analytics-focused course will look at different types of analytics and why they are important, before moving on to practical web analytics digital skills.

Digital Skills: Social Media with Accenture

It wasn’t so long ago that you might have asked whether social media was important to business, but today, social media is a key pillar of digital marketing, brand communication, and an increasingly important sales channel.

This social media skills course helps marketers to understand different social media channels and tools.

You’ll learn how to manage your social media presence, how to listen on social media, and how to target different audiences. You’ll also master the all-important discipline of performance management.

Digital Skills: User Experience with Accenture

To illustrate the importance of user experience (or UX), we can look to Apple.

Apple is one of the world’s biggest companies, one of only six to have ever reached a market capitalisation of $1 trillion. Why is Apple so successful? The answer is largely down to the simple fact that its products are so pleasant and intuitive to use. This is the art of user experience.

This digital skills course explores the foundations of UX design in digital products and projects. It goes on to look at processes to follow to ensure good UX, focussing on testing and data analysis.

Learners will come out of this course with a solid grasp of how to deliver good UX in their products and services.

From general introductory digital skills courses to courses for specific digital skillsets, an online digital skills course on FutureLearn will set you apart and prepare you for the digital roles of the future.

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