The Methodology
of DataSkills4SMEs

DataSkills4SMEs wants to support the development of data skills for the use of digital technologies among SME employees in Europe, so that these companies can have better access to these skillsets.

To achieve this goal, the project intends to identify what are the most relevant skills that small and medium-sized companies in Europe are looking for. It then intends to build a training curriculum that their employees can follow to become more proficient in these skills.

This curriculum and its courses, lessons and teaching material will be made available on the online teaching platform. The curriculum will then be tested through a pilot phase that will give access to the trainings to a sample size of SMEs employees. Their feedback will be used to further improve the content and the teaching hub.

Specifically, the methodology of the project will be structured in the following three phases:

– At first the project will perform cross-sectoral studies based on survey to be completed by SMEs across Europe. Its purpose is to provide an overview of their experience and needs across the 27 EU Member States with respect to digital innovations and data management.

This step is required to understand the market challenges SMEs encounter, both when they represent an existential threat but also when they hinder their growth. Through these studies, the project will be able to define the specificities of their needs in terms of knowledge gaps, skills mismatch and competence acquisition.

– Based on the results of the studies, a learning model will be designed and implemented.

This will include specific learning objectives and expected based upon the detected learning needs. The learning management system will be provided by the Moodle platform that is a largely adopted by E-learning centres worldwide. Moodle has been developed, and continuously updated, in order to provide learners with suitable tools to share ideas, feelings and knowledge with trainers via different channels, like interactive media, forum, wiki and social spaces in order to.

– The model will be tested through a pilot phase: SMEs employees will be able to register on the training platform to follow courses dedicated to improving and optimising the data skills identified as needed through the survey.

The pilot will put to the test and verify the soundness, consistency and usability of the training model.

The piloting/testing phase is expected to be conducted in two steps:

1. Pilot test of the training programme for DataSkills4SME facilitators, involving at national level at least 10 appointed staff members from SMEs.

2. Pilot test of the training programme, involving SMEs’ managers and employees in the partner countries in the real implementation of the training model. At national level at least 20 SMEs’ staff members will be involved (approx. 80 employees).

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