Strong ICT skills are a plus to anyone in the work place and expectedly enough almost all firms are tilting towards the era of zero use of paper work in and out of office. Therefore, it behoves the young undergraduate, graduate or High School student reading this piece to be aware of the various ways by which strong ICT skills can be acquired in order to get prepared for the workplace early in life.
A dear friend of mine (a youth Corps member) went for an interview and a section of the question bothered on the use of Excel and the formula for some purposes (Thank God she ‘aced’ it)
Just last month or so, during an interview with a candidate who’ll basically do online research if hired, I asked a candidate to deactivate Java Script of a website or web browser and he totally blanked out; he did not know what to do (Not that I expected him to, I only wanted to know how good he was with the internet)
Some months later (all this year) we had a recruitment exercise where candidates were meant to take a Computer Based Testing (CBT) before the interview commenced. Well, it happened that some of the candidates could not operate the computer let alone pass the oral interview. It’s obvious strong ICT skills were lacking.
So you may ask “What is the meaning of ICT anyway?”
Well, that’s why I’m here. Let me explain more about what ICT means…
ICT is an acronym for Information and Communications Technology which covers any means by which communication is made either via gadgets or other means. It involves receiving, storing and processing information as well as sending that information via various channels such as the use of the internet, using the computer, sending emails, mastering software applications etc.
Now let’s get to the crux of the matter…
Ways to Have Strong ICT Skills Required for any Job
Get a Laptop
There is a school in my neighbourhood, a Primary school that makes sure every students has a laptop in front of him/her for practical use when teachings on such is going on. I just imagined how those little children would be so good at using the computer when they are of age.
If you desire strong ICT skills, get a laptop! It worked for me. Even though I had mandatory ICT lectures in the University during my second year, I never knew anything on the computer except browsing. I never knew how to locate the MS Word application shut down a computer or even do basic things until I won a laptop in 2010 and my true journey began. A desktop would do but I prefer a laptop because of its mobility.
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Get a Lecture
Now after you have a computer, it is important that you learn from someone who knows or have strong ICT Skills by being friends with them and watching whatever they do with their computers. At this point enrolling for computer training is not a bad idea at all. But what is important is that whatsoever you are taught or you learn make sure you practice it again and again and again and mostly on your own.
Know How to Browse the Internet
I place this one specially because it is different from the whole others but very important as well. It is just a section of the ICT knowhow. I knew how to browse by visiting cyber cafes in 2003 but my knowledge about both computer software and some hardware started in 2010 when I had a laptop. So apart from your phone browsing and the likes, please visit a cyber café and learn and then come home to practise on a computer if you’re buoyant enough for data.
Read, Read and Read!!
The Youth Corps friend I talked about at the beginning of this post learnt the use of Excel on the internet and she has strong ICT skills; likewise me (at least some). Everything I know about ICT today was learnt form the internet. Google search came in handy; Yahoo Answers was always on point for me to ask what I did not know. Towards the end of the year and moving into the New Year, I was repairing, formatting and troubleshoot computers for others. I was making money doing online research for people. I mastered the Corel Draw software and was even part of the four man design crew for our University Magazine. I did a video album for my class using a video software and made over N7,000 from it (spending little to produce it). Just READ!!!
Know The Specific ICT Skill for your Profession/Field Very Early
I’m going to treat this one in detail later because it is quite broad (And I don’t want to bore you with a very long article). But always know that every profession has a basic ICT skill needed for individuals to use and work through. For example Accountants need to know about specific software like Sage, Peachtree etc, Engineers, Auto CAD and the likes. It is better you have the knowhow of these software applications even before you graduate. More shall be written later
Well, strong ICT skills don’t just come or appear overnight. You have to keep learning and learning and learning at every point you have the opportunity. Hope you’ve gained something so far. Do you have questions? Please use the comment box or contact me directly using the contact page. Thank you and do not forget the share this article…