Ambizione Italia Morning Future
Guiding Trend 14 November Nov 2018 0830 14 November 2018

100 million from Microsoft to reduce skills mismatch

‘Ambizione Italia’ is an ecosystem project aimed at getting 2 million students involved in programmes and courses. As part of the proposal, the Phyd platform was created for professional guidance.

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A new research report by The Adecco Group entitled “Conoscenze, abilità e attitudini: una lettura dei desiderata d’impresa” (“Knowledge, skills and attitudes: looking at what businesses want”), carried out in collaboration with JobPricing and the University of Milano-Bicocca, demonstrates how soft skills increasingly determine future employability. For many different categories of workers, soft skills can also have a positive affect on wages, resulting in an increase of up to 42% in salaries.

With the aim of reducing skills mismatch, a Memorandum of Understanding was established between the Adecco Group and Microsoft to launch Phyd, a digital platform based on Cloud Computing and Artificial Intelligence technologies able to help people improve their own educational, professional and personal profile by developing new skills and updating the ones that they have already acquired.

We believe that we must support workers in closing the training gap, and help to build the future of work in Italy

Andrea Malacrida, Country Manager of The Adecco Group Italia

Phyd allows you to visualize the positioning of young people and professionals on a map that intersects job opportunities, requirements and personal characteristics, allows you to identify the most relevant career paths and training to undertake, and finally provides access to the best training courses around to help build your future.

Andrea Malacrida

"As a major player in the Italian labour market, we feel it is our duty to support workers in bridging the training gap, and to help build the future of work in Italy" explains Andrea Malacrida, Country Manager of The Adecco Group Italia. "It’s not news that job offers exist, but more often than not, they do not generate an adequate response. We would like to help bridge the gap between job applications and job offers by helping job seekers to create their own comprehensive professional profile in the best way possible”.

In Italy, the unemployment rate remains one of the highest in Europe –10.4% according to Eurostat, compared to 8.2% in the Eurozone, and 30.8% youth unemployment compared to 16.6% – and, at the same time, there is a significant gap between skills required and skills available on the market. "This divide slows down growth and can only be overcome by focusing on training, to help the country evolve in step with the times and new technological trends," explained Silvia Candiani, CEO of Microsoft Italy, talking about the major effort undertaken by the company. Phyd, which the Adecco Group invested 6 million Euro to establish, is part of the American IT company’s ecosystem project entitled ‘Ambizione Italia’.

Silvia Candiani

By 2020, Microsoft will invest 100 million Euros towards initiatives, programmes and courses involving 2 million students, ‘NEETs’, young people and professionals to help our country grow with the aid of Artificial Intelligence. This will be done in collaboration with The Adecco Group, and other partners, including LinkedIn, Invitalia, Cariplo Factory and Fondazione Mondo Digitale. This is a tremendous undertaking to support training, employment and growth within the country.

"Today we live in a hyper-connected world that can be seen as an entire intelligent platform in itself, where Artificial Intelligence has the potential to really move things forward and make a difference," concluded Silvia Candiani.

The factor hindering our ability to implement AI is the lack of skills, meaning that people who already work for the company have to be retrained

Silvia Candiani, CEO of Microsoft Italy

She goes on to state that "the factor hindering our ability to implement Artificial Intelligence is the lack, or total absence, of skills, meaning that people who already work for the company have to be retrained. That's why we need to work on a digital ethics programme, which the government is also working on. And we need to help companies get started with their AI projects. There are three things we have to do: collaborate with educational facilities, boost specific skill sets, from data analysts to cybersecurity experts, and ensure that people remain employable and continue to invest in their skills".

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