Microsoft launches programme to upskill 25 mn people as job losses mount

Microsoft launches programme to upskill 25 mn people as job losses mount
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2 Jul, 2020

Software giant Microsoft said it has rolled out a global initiative to impart digital skills to 25 million people by the end of the year. 

The programme aims to accelerate economic recovery at a time when thousands of people grapple with job losses, the Redmond, Seattle-based company said in a statement. 

The company will combine resources from LinkedIn, GitHub and Microsoft, and use the data to identify in-demand jobs and the skills they require. It will then provide individuals free access to skilling content, such as LinkedIn Learning, Microsoft Learn and the GitHub Learning Lab, which can be accessed on opportunity.linkedin.com, to develop the necessary skills, the statement said. The content will be available in English, French, German and Spanish.

“Covid-19 has created both a public health and an economic crisis, and as the world recovers, we need to ensure no one is left behind. We are bringing together resources from Microsoft inclusive of LinkedIn and GitHub to reimagine how people learn and apply new skills — and help 25 million people facing unemployment and prepare for the jobs of the future,” Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft, said.

Additionally, Microsoft said it is creating a new learning app on Microsoft Teams to enable employers to upskill their employees. It also looks to make stronger data and analytics, including data from the LinkedIn Economic Graph, available to governments around the world to help them assess local economic needs better, it added. 

The company's goal is to combine technology and stronger partnerships with governments and nonprofit organisations to help people develop the skills needed to secure a new job, Brad Smith, president of Microsoft, said.

A fortnight ago, the software firm partnered with enterprise data management and analytics firm SAS to enable customers to address complex analytical challenges and foster innovation.   

In early June, it launched a programme for agritech startups, designed to help companies build industry-specific solutions, scale, and grow with access to deep technology, business and marketing resources. 

In late May, Microsoft rolled out a suite of solutions to help small and medium healthcare providers in India. The suite comes integrated with collaboration app Microsoft Teams, bookings app Microsoft Bookings, web-based office apps O365 E1, and Power Platform, which includes three products Power BI, PowerApps and Power Automate.