Digital education is a game-changer



Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Digital transformation is no longer a nonsensical phrase. It’s also no secret that the digital talent gap is widening—putting a brake on companies’ digital transformation programmes. And while the war for digital talent has intensified, female representation is lacking. 

“Gender diversity increases innovation and success,” says RightBrains founder Geke Rosier, adding that the gender pay gap, recruiting biases, overly expensive parental leave, hostile environments and a lack of mentoring and sponsorship are contributing factors to the lack thereof.  

“We’re not going to solve this tomorrow, but we need to show women how many opportunities there are within this field,” she says.

“We need to start delivering female digital talent. More women are participating in the Dutch labour market, but not in the field of digital technology—and that’s what our future is all about.

“Education is a big driver for change,” she believes. 

Digital know-how

In 2004 Rosier co-founded a consultancy firm, concerned with business-IT alignment within large corporations. While technology was growing at an exponential rate, many people working in IT were losing their jobs—leaving Rosier perplexed. “The knowledge gap continued widening,” she says. 

“Not everyone has the competencies to succeed in the digital future, but I’ve always wondered why these people weren’t being trained. I found it very short-term minded.”

Rosier recently read a report commissioned by the National Register and Nederland ICT on digital transformation in boardrooms, highlighting the lack of digital know-how to strategically deal with digital transformation. This is exactly why digitally minded leaders need a seat at the table. 

 “I’m concerned that organisations are not investing enough in human capital,” she says. 

Developing competencies like machine learning, AI, advanced data analytics and people’s understanding of the impact of digital transformation, is crucial, Rosier continues. “Companies that don’t acquire this knowledge won’t survive.

“You’ll run into it sooner or later.

“We need more educational programmes and training to bring our working population up to speed. There’s a lot to do,” she says. 

“There is an enormous knowledge gap with respect to digitalisation and technologies at the top of organisations. We also need more diversity at the top.”

Digital leadership 

RightBrains wants to grow the number of women in the field of digital technology. This means attracting more women, but also retaining and developing them to succeed as digital leaders today.

The RightBrains Digital Leadership Programme, now in its fifth year, is an example. The Programme offers an intensive, invaluable educational experience for women with digital leadership ambitions. Participants will learn all about the latest technologies and their impact on transformation strategies, digital leadership, innovation, new business models and organisational development.

The Programme consists of four modules, spread across the year, and is taught by prominent lecturers from Nyenrode Business University, University of Delft, INSEAD and The Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences.

Visit rightbrains.nl/academy for more information.