They say it’s impossible to predict the future, but there’s one thing we can be certain of when it comes to business and the economy: technology will play an increasingly pivotal role in everything we do.
It’s no wonder, then, that those who possess top-level digital skills are in high demand, with this trend likely to continue in years to come. The problem we have on our hands, however, is that demand is seriously outstripping supply – a Tech Nation study revealed more than half of the UK’s digital tech firms are dealing with a shortage of skilled workers.
However, the UK government has a plan up its sleeve, which takes the form of a £20m investment to launch a brand new Institute of Coding (IoC).
As the Evening Standard reports, the institute comprises a consortium of 60 businesses and 25 universities keen to play a part in developing the next generation of top tech talent.
The institute is costing £40m overall, with half of the total funded through the government’s Office of Students, and the other half from partners.
The IoC will offer specialist skills training through degrees, degree apprenticeships, short courses and continuing professional development. The range of learning routes has been designed to make the institute more accessible, so it’s not just those in traditional education that are given the opportunity to develop their skills.
The institution also hopes to inspire and provide support to underrepresented groups in tech. This includes women, who currently account for just 17% of those working in the sector but will be key to its future growth.
The IoC’s appointed director, Dr Rachid Hourizi, commented: “We have a clear commitment to [tackle] the digital skills shortfall by making it easier for students, people at work and potential learners that we have not previously reached to access higher education and improve their technical abilities.
“We believe every person, whatever their background, deserves the opportunity to improve their digital skillsets through flexible learning convenient to their needs, whether that be face-to-face or online, full or part-time and as a stand-alone activity or part of an existing job.”
Recent years have seen increasing opportunities for people to master coding and be part of the digital revolution. British fintech firm Revolut, for instance, recently launched free coding classes for women in a bid to diversify developers. Meanwhile, US coding school Flatiron opened its first international school in the capital last week.
These initiatives to upskill the UK’s current and future workers is fantastic news for the UK tech industry – and for the economy too.
Tech UK’s president Jacqueline de Rojas said that with business desperate for workers with the latest digital skills, the launch of the IoC is already assisting companies in growing and developing the technical capabilities of UK employees.
She concluded: “Serving as a bridge between industry and academia, this organisation will enable companies to build workforces fit for the future, by offering the opportunity to benefit from high-quality learning to everyone.”
Do you already possess coding skills and are looking for your next, challenging role? If the answer is yes, get in touch with Talent International today.