Sep 3, 2018 | By Thomas

“Big four” auditing firm PriceWaterhouseCoopers (PwC) is launching a new "digital skills" training programs aimed at improving the expertise of its employees on blockchain and other innovative technologies like 3D printing.

The two-year digital skills course, dubbed “Digital Accelerators”, is scheduled to begin in January 2019. It will train 1,000 employees of PwC on everything from drones, blockchain, and cleansing data to 3D printing. The course would enable PWC to replace the typical workload of all participants with digital-heavy client work.

The intermediate-to-advanced skill building courses is aimed to enhance PwC employees’ digital skills as well as cut costs for clients, thus boosting internal blockchain expertise, the report added.

PwC Digital Accelerators head Sarah McEneaney told Digiday that the move is part of a wider effort to help increase the firm's subject-matter expertise. , McEneaney has revealed that because PwC is not “primarily known” for its marketing consulting services, it is now having to compete with other ad agencies and consulting firms to get more clients.

“My job is to future proof our workforce,” said McEneaney. “It just seems table stakes at this point that people should have more technology skills. It’s needed for us to remain competitive and to be responsive for what our clients are also going through.”

According to McEneaney, PwC clients expect things more digitally in order to control the cost. The training should make employees more efficient and PwC can cut down billable hours on projects when employees finish tasks faster, McEneany contended. These savings will be transferred to PwC's customers.

During the program, Every participating employee is required to spend 10 hours per week in Digital Accelerator classes. Data and analytics, which will include information collection and blockchain, will make up the first part of the program's curriculum. Data and analytics, which will include information collection and blockchain, will make up the first part of the program's curriculum. The second area focuses on automation, including classes on cybersecurity, drones and augmented reality. The third is focused on artificial intelligence and machine learning. The classes are designed for both onsite as well as virtual training.

McEneaney stated that, with the courses, employees’ responsibilities will be on client work that is digitally-focused. “It’s basically like a new role for them,” said McEneaney. Roughly 3,500 employees out of the more than 46,000 employees working at PwC have applied for a spot in this program.

Images Credit: PwC

PwC said that training employees with new digital skills is one of the largest single investment areas for the firm this year.



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