Workers and small business owners worried about falling behind in a rapidly changing digital world have been thrown a lifeline by award-winning educator The Mind Lab.
The company is offering New Zealanders affected by the Covid-19 pandemic free enrolment in a course teaching everything from website creation and management to social media and search engine optimisation and business planning and finance.
Students on the NZQA accredited course will also be guided on digital project management, cybersecurity, online collaboration, and communication.
The Digital Skills in the Workplace course usually costs close to $300 but will be free for the rest of 2020.
The Mind Lab founder Frances Valintine wanted to offer the course at no cost to acknowledge the toll the pandemic had on small business owners.
She said it was a no-brainer to make the course free for eligible Kiwis for the rest of the year as New Zealanders help each other get through the impacts of the pandemic.
"It goes without saying, 2020 will be a year we will never forget," she said.
"By June it was abundantly clear that organisations and individuals who had invested in the development of digital systems, processes and the associated knowledge and skills were able to move relatively seamlessly into a virtual world."
Valintine said learning those skills and would take businesses forward and through the impact of Covid-19.
Digital Skills for the Workplace is a NZQA accredited, seven-week part-time course, conducted entirely online over Zoom.
The course has two versions - one for individuals and one for small businesses - and is a level 7 qualification, worth 15 credits.
Valintine said it was designed to address the skills gap in New Zealand that exists after the majority of New Zealanders complete education in their mid-20s, and often don't learn again.
"Our micro-credential in Digital Skills for the Workplace was developed specifically to provide practical, hands-on solutions for people wanting to learn the skills they need to succeed in their role or in their business.
"We also wanted to ensure that at a time when many training budgets have been reduced that tuition fees would not be a barrier to skills."
Valintine said the course would suit plenty of New Zealanders wanting to upskill including those starting up a small business, people wanting to improve knowledge in their current role and those about to enter or re-enter the competitive job market.
To enrol for the October intake for the Workplace course click here.