Issues of improving competitiveness of organizations in conditions of overcoming digital inequality

Digital economy: theory and practice

Digital inequality affects all spheres of society, including the economic system. The article aims to reveal key factors on how to overcome the digital inequality in organizations in terms of increasing competitiveness and brand management. Digitalization of the economy and education in Russia is intensifying, the requirements for digital competencies of the society are rising. Educational activities today are carried out through various digital platforms more often than in a classroom full-time format, especially during the pandemic. Today we could name a range of constraining factors for information and communication technologies development in education, such as insufficient preparedness of universities and their educational electronic platforms, imperfect legal framework, expensive services of Internet providers, digital inequality. The article provides an overview of key competitiveness factors for educational branding strategy in the context of the digital inequality. New challenges affect the change of criteria for assessing competitiveness, reflecting the aspects of the organization activities, including those providing educational services. Computerization of the business system imposes new requirements for competencies of employees and university graduates, but are there potentially enough resources to meet them? The university not only solves the problem of training “digital” human resources for the economy, but also simultaneously improves internal digital competencies. Results of the study: (1) we carried out a factor analysis of the organization’s competitiveness indicators based on the example of Tomsk State University (TSU); (2) we identified factors influencing the formation of the university brand and its competitiveness in terms of digital inequality; (3) we systematized criteria to increase the effectiveness of the educational brand and the competitiveness of the organization in the digital world. The paper presents an overview of the competitiveness factors, which can become a basis of methodology to determine the competitiveness of services in an educational organization. To form a branding strategy for an educational organization one should take into account the problems of digital inequality in the conditions of labor transformation with general computerization of the municipal system.