Microsoft Office is nearly as important as water.

Microsoft Office is nearly as important as water, at least in a western commercial context, claims education expert Keith Wymer.

“Frankly, whatever your feelings towards Microsoft, modern business wouldn’t survive without it, hence my water analogy,” he adds.

“And the people who can use MS Office best deliver more productivity to their employers,” he argues. “The problem is that most people are self-taught and have a limited knowledge of how to use Word, Excel, PowerPoint and so on and that’s a bit like letting unlicensed drivers loose on the road.”

Wymer believes there are three important Microsoft Office courses that ensure your staff are competent in its use.

“First I would recommend the Pitman Training Microsoft Office Plus Diploma as it is the most thorough hand is structured to allow students to take the advanced levels of Word and Excel if required. It’s the longest and most expensive of my suggestions but you have to ask yourself whether you would skimp on the same level of training for your bookkeeper. It’s got to be worth it.”

“My second choice would be Pitman Training’s Fast Track Diploma For Microsoft Skills. It’s kind of an MS Office Plus lite qualification, shorter and rather cheaper. Another big hit!”

“My third recommendation would be the European Computer Driving Licence or ECDL as it is commonly known. Although it’s very basic, it’s better than being self-taught and anyone having completed it will add value for their employers just by being smarter and more productive.”

Wymer continues: “It’s hard to believe that when I was a young account manager in the 1980’s, we used to create client presentations on paper with marker pens and hand-written graphics; spreadsheets were hand-written on pro-formas given out by banks and tippex was the universal panacea for typing mistakes.. Microsoft Office has allowed people to make an exponential leap from those days of happy amateurism to where we are today.”

“But again, it’s noticeable that fast-growing organisations have really invested in their employees’ Microsoft skills and their productivity far outstrips those that remain mired in average level s of desktop expertise.”

“So my advice to business leaders would be to skill up your workforce to explore how MS Office courses can add value to your organisation rather than standing in the shadows of current practice.”
Keith Wymer is Chairman of Hotlines Call Centre Group and Managing Director of Hotlines Call Centre Skills Training. He is also on the board of Holborn Training Ltd.

You can learn more about the Pitman Training Microsoft Office Plus Diploma, Pitman Training’s Fast Track Diploma For Microsoft Skills and the European Computer Driving Licence (ECDL) at

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