New research reveals social value of being online is worth more than £1,000 a year
15 July 2014
BT has revealed that the social benefits of getting online are worth more than £1,000 a year to someone using the internet for the first time. The findings are part of an independent study, commissioned by BT, to calculate the social value of using the internet. The research placed a monetary figure on being online.
For someone using the internet for the first time, the social value is calculated at £1,064. This social value comes from a combination of benefits ranging from financial savings and improved employment opportunities to reduced feelings of isolation and improved confidence. The accumulative benefits of being online could be as high as £3,568 when also considering professional people’s ability to work remotely and their access to higher wages from using IT skills at work.
The results draw on analysis of one of BT’s Get IT Together programme which was conducted by social and economic research company, Just Economics. More than 17,000 people have become confident independent internet users after completing the Get IT Together training and 78 per cent are still using the internet three months after their training ended.
The Just Economics analysis calculated the social return on investment (SROI) in the Get IT Together programme is £3.70 of social return for every £1 invested in digital skills and developed a model which BT is sharing online.
“This research reinforces the critical role the internet plays in society today” said Anna Easton, BT’s Connected Society director, “We will use these findings to help shape our future digital inclusion plans and are publishing both the research and the supporting methodology in the hope that other organisations will seize the opportunity to evaluate their own programmes and help build a rich database of information to help get the 6.4 million unconnected people online for the first time.”
Learn more about BT’s digital inclusion and skills programmes