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With new technologies constantly being created, implemented, and sold, it is a massive opportunity for TVET institutions to hop on board with the latest digital trends. With the business world undergoing rapid changes and advancements, the transformation process has been fast and significant disruptions.
The digital transformation is changing how we live, work and do business. Everywhere, we meet a digital solution. We can pay for a product created by a computer-controlled machine using mobile money. All around us, we find digital solutions.
The change from coins to mobile money is a part of the digital transformation. The shift from producing a product with the hands to creating a similar outcome with a computer-controlled machine is a part of the digital transformation.
Companies are at the forefront of this transformation, providing the technology. The wider business community can also face challenges in integrating technology cost-effectively, improving productivity and workers’ well-being.
Digital Transformation refers to the reimagining of a business by implementing new technologies and optimising legacy systems to improve operations.
The digital transformation of TVET is about innovation, adaption, and acceleration. In the following, we will look at :
- digital innovation in TVET
- digital adaption in TVET
- digital acceleration in TVET
Digital Innovation in TVET
Digital innovation refers to the application of digital technology to existing business problems. TVET recognises that they need to transform, innovate, and adopt new technology to stay competitive in today’s evolving marketplace.
TVET institutions that are digital innovators consider new ways to solve old problems. Digital innovation initiatives can include:
- Developing a new technology strategy in an existing business context
- Choosing to adopt and implement new software or platforms
- Deciding to evolve from analogue to digital processes
Because the global marketplace is becoming more digital, TVET must also evolve to stay competitive.
TVET institutions that innovate and transform will see many benefits, such as:
- Streamlined processes that come as a result of automation, data security, and other integrated technology solutions
- Digital solutions that cut costs, improve the return on investment both for the schools and the students, and boost the number of students
- A competitive advantage
Though digital innovation has its benefits, it also has its downsides.
Many TVET leaders are afraid that innovation could damage their core business. While fear of change is understandable, it can also hinder growth. Technology disrupts industry after industry, which is only set to continue. The TVET institutions have to follow this development.
Digital innovation is the best solution for TVET institutions that wish to evolve and stay competitive. Digital innovation enables new forms of teaching and learning, including new pedagogies. The challenges are teacher competencies, teacher qualifications, access to learning resources, level of ICT use in TVET.
Digital Adaption in TVET
Adoption is the process of changing to fit some purpose or situation: the process of adapting. Adoption the technology requires teaching new skills to adapt to the changing needs of society and the labour market.
Digital Adaption is the ability to predict or perceive quickly evolving business needs and adjust through new combinations of technology, process and workforce management .
The concept of digital adaptation can fundamentally be broken down into four categories :
- Evolving Needs
- Workforce Change
- The Experience
- Competitive Threat
We will transfer the ideas from a business situation towards a TVET context and look at those four categories.
TVET institutions must adapt their education and support systems in this world of constant change. Today, success and survival result from thriving among volatility and uncertainty. With this level of change and uncertainty, it becomes difficult to predict future needs. As a result, leading schools place many smaller bets on emerging models and technologies.
The workforce model looks very different than it did 10 years ago. That means that the schools should follow the same trend. As technologies evolve, companies need many technical skills, ranging from Data Scientists to User Experience Design Analysts. The breadth of talent requirements should cause companies to consider new models for obtaining the necessary talent. This is the new challenge for TVET institutions.
Today, students compare the school’s digital experience to all their other digital experiences, not just those of the schools you compare yourself with. However, delivering great digital experiences should not be confined only to your students and prospects. The school should provide great experiences for the teachers and all the employees. The school should put them in the best position to succeed by adapting and delivering great technology to better serve the students.
Barriers to attracting new students are nothing more than a good idea and a couple of high energy individuals in a dorm room. TVET institutions spring up overnight, threatening the core of established schools. New, well-funded, fast-growth schools have materialised. Whether they succeed or fail does not diminish the immediate competitive threat they represent.
Digital adoption for a TVET institution is changing to fit some purpose or situation in the digitalised environment.
Digital Acceleration in TVET
Digital transformation leads to massive changes in the skill sets needed for work and life. Successful digital technologies are also critical in meeting “The Sustainable Development Goals”. Teaching and learning need to address the changes and challenges by introducing ICT (Information and Communication Technologies) in almost all areas. TVET institutions have to make the best use of new technologies to provide an adequate education.
Digital transformation is more successful with a positive shift in culture. It is about the mindset about digital transformation. You can discover the role the teachers and stakeholders can play in the success of digital transformation strategies.
Here is some question for evaluating the digital acceleration in the TVET institution:
- How are institutional policies and structures likely to change to reflect the changing situation?
- What changes are proposed to the curriculum/occupational areas to reflect the rapidly changing demand, and how are they identified?
- How will learners get the practical and work-based experience they need, and what changes to work-based learning and apprenticeships are needed?
- What changes are needed to the teaching institution’s skills and type of staff?
- How can new delivery models and ways of working promote more inclusive practice?
How the TVET institutions adopt new technologies will determine how they benefit from the practice. Here are a few common advantages of school process digitisation and digital acceleration:
- Improved Decision-Making
- Financial Savings
The digital transformation is changing how we live, work and study. Everywhere, we meet a digital solution. TVET institutions that adopt the digital transformation for the teachers and the students will determine how they will survive in the future.
To become among the best TVET institutions, the school need a digital strategy. A digital strategy focuses on using technology to improve school performance, creating new curriculums or reimagining the current curriculum. It specifies how the school will develop unique competitive advantages with technology and its tactics to achieve these changes.
References The Digitization of TVET and Skills Development, ILO and UNESCO, 2020  Handbook of Research on Disruptive Innovation and Digital Transformation in Asia, 2021  An Introduction to Digital Adaption, Rural Sourcing,2018
Lucubrate Magazine January 2022
The Picture on the top of the article: Mechanized industry robot and human worker working together in the future factory. Concept of artificial intelligence for industrial revolution and automation manufacturing process: Adobe Stock