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Behind the Scenes at ICS - Claudia Delaney – Head of Training and Certification

Many of you will know Claudia Delaney, our Head of Training and Certification, who has been with ICS for over 18 years. We’ve spoken to Claudia about her vision for supporting your professional development.

Claudia started at ICS as ECDL Accreditation Coordinator. She honed her skills as a learning and development professional while looking after the IT skills needs of hundreds of schools and companies across Ireland.

With this unique insight into Ireland’s skill requirements, Claudia took over the Training department in early 2018. Her vision is for all IT professionals across Ireland to upskill to drive up standards in IT, deliver better business value to their employers and to improve their own career prospects.

Our focus as an organisation has always been on IT professionals. That term has become substantially broader in recent years. We often hear that there are only two roles that don’t require IT skills. So what does that make IT professionals? Are they coders and programmers, or marketers with web editing skills? Or are we all IT professionals? As providers of professional training, this challenge is one we want to address.

“The omnipresence of technology in our lives and workplaces means that we all need to keep our skills up to date. Technologies are constantly evolving and, while they are improving our workflows in many ways, inefficiencies can crop up if staff are left behind with out-of-date or insufficient training,” said Claudia.

“My focus as Head of Training and Certification is on the importance of all staff upskilling. There are many different ways to upskill, and all are important. We should be taking some time every week to refresh our skills by reading an article online or streaming a webinar for example. However, formal training cannot be underestimated as one of the four essential pillars of CPD. Taking that time out of your working week, and often stepping away from the office, to focus on a new skill, or improving your understanding of something you already do is invaluable.

“I would say the skills to focus on at the moment are definitely in data protection. And this counts for all staff, everyone should play a part. 25 May 2018 was just the beginning for GDPR, and all staff who haven’t yet been trained in the latest data protection standards should be. We have specially developed courses from half-day basic coverage to a fully certified Data Protection Officer training course. There’s something for everyone.”

Claudia believes that it is advantageous from a business perspective to upskill all staff. The so-called “digital fallacy” is something we are always trying to debunk. Young people, and their parents and managers, underestimate what skills they need for supposedly “non-IT” roles, and fall short at the first hurdle. The fact is that now, every role has elements of IT, so a commitment to professional development in IT is less of an option than a requirement.

“We also offer unique training in leadership and management skills,” said Claudia, “to upskill the next generation of IT leaders. Our bespoke training courses have been developed to empower anyone with the potential to lead a modern, agile team and offer them quality leadership and guidance.”

To contact Claudia about your training requirements, contact her by email at claudia@ics.ie or by phone on +353 (0) 1 23 777 08.

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