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Digital

Digital Skills Training

The West Midlands is the place to be for digital. We have the fastest growing digital sector outside London and we have ambitious plans to double the industry’s economic output over the next decade. 

With rising automation, a changing job landscape and the job losses caused by the coronavirus pandemic, the digital sector will be vital to the region’s economic recovery from the coronavirus pandemic.

Technology is the ‘golden thread’ across many of our key industries – including advanced manufacturing, life sciences, professional services, construction, logistics, transport and low carbon technology.

Over the past two years, the West Midlands Combined Authority has funded thousands of local residents to learn new skills for the jobs of the future. These include 1,500 people who have joined digital bootcamps thanks to the Digital Retraining Fund. We work with training providers to ensure the skills being taught match what employers need, giving residents valuable opportunities to start a new career in technology.

 

Current providers

 

Other work we have led includes setting up the West Midlands Digital Skills Partnership to develop local people’s digital skills, attract investment and retain talent across the region.

We are also working with partners to enable local communities across the region to benefit from new ways of developing digital skills in the West Midlands. These include an ethical Hacking Lab to train young people and adults in cyber security skills, and a Digital Innovation Fund.

As a resident, find out about how you could learn new digital skills for free.

Are you an employer who wants to help shape the digital agenda? We would like you to work with us to design the digital needs of the future. We can connect you to the right training providers to develop your digital requirements for your future talent. Get in contact with us at digital@wmca.org.uk

 

Digital Skills Training Pilot – Final Evaluation Report

West Midlands Combined Authority commissioned Winning Moves to complete an evaluation of its Digital Skills Pilot, which aims to support unemployed and employed (combined authority) residents from the West Midlands to enter and/ or progress into employment with digital occupations.

Read the Final Evaluation Report

Meet the Digital Skills Partnership board members

Lee Jones - Digital Skills Lead, Microsoft

Lee is the Local and Regional Government Digital Skills lead for Microsoft UK. She is absolutely passionate about driving digital skills across both the public sector and into communities to ensure no-one is left behind.

"Talent is everywhere - but the opportunity is not. I want to help create the opportunity to empower everyone with digital skills for a more prosperous fulfilling future.

Enthusiasm, innovation, thought leadership and strategic thinking are my strengths."

Lee Jones

Dr David J Hardman MBE - Managing Director, Bruntwood SciTech

David has a 25-year career in knowledge transfer which includes leading science parks to promote commercial exploitation of new technology concepts in knowledge-based businesses.

In 2008, he developed and implemented a new strategy to build on the legacy of Aston Science Park the result of which is the Innovation Birmingham Campus - the region’s digital technology hub.

"Provocation of digital talent agenda for a modern economy; focus on opportunity for all - diversification of the talent base addressing career pathways based on digital capabilities as well as academic achievement. "

Dr David J Hardman Mbe

Nuno Guarda - Head of Corporate Affairs UK & Ireland, Cisco Systems

Nuno manages Cisco’s Corporate Social Responsibility programmes and initiatives, with a big focus on Networking Academy. Networking Academy is a non-commercial digital skills programme to equip people for  an ever increasingly connected world.

"Knowledge about the Education sector, its challenges and opportunities. Connections to other industry partners."

Nuno manages Cisco’s Corporate Social Responsibility programmes and initiatives, with a big focus on Networking Academy. Networking Academy is a non-commercial digital skills programme to equip people for  an ever increasingly connected world.

"Knowledge about the Education sector, its challenges and opportunities. Connections to other industry partners."

Nguarda

Angela Jeffery - Director of Regional Strategy, Aston University

Angela is a member of a senior manager at Aston University working on regional strategy and projects. She is also a Knowledge Exchange Professional with over 17 years’ experience of bringing together academic and external organisations to collaborate for mutual benefit. She has served on numerous regional bodies to support the digital sector. In 2019, she became the Digital Leaders Midlands local champion.

"I have a good understanding of the priorities for the region as well as the importance of education and digital skills and the local ecosystem."

Angela Jeffery

Jatinder Sharma - Principal/Chief Executive, Walsall College

Jatinder is the Chief Executive of Walsall College, which employs more than 850 people and delivers technical and vocational qualifications, apprenticeships and Higher education to 15,000 students at 5 campuses. His institution also provides online learning and on-the-job training to many local employers.

"I am a keen driver for prosperity in Walsall and the wider region.

Improving digital literacy and access to technologies is key to this, ensuring that students possess the right skills to support our economy."

Jatinder Sharma Head And Shoulder Shot

John Pritchard - Director/Co-founder, Accelerate People

John now runs a 'Digital End-point Assessment Organisation' to help validate apprenticeships. He has worked across a range of director roles and businesses after leaving the military 20 years ago. His background and experience in telecoms and technology sector has supported large and small employers with digital solutions and training.

"I bring broad range of experience in many sectors with requirements for digital skills.

I have a diverse knowledge of the digital sector, apprenticeship landscape and small-to-medium sized business requirements and skills gaps."

John Pritchard

Productivity and Skills press release