From education to employment

£3 million to boost digital skills in Manchester

The government has confirmed that £3 million will be invested to help strengthen digital skills in Greater Manchester and the surrounding areas.

The funding announced in the Budget will see the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) team up with the Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA) for the pilot project.

Employers and training providers will identify which digital skills are in short supply in the local area and design a targeted approach that can help people prepare to move into digital roles.

Greater Manchester is one of the largest digital clusters in the UK with almost 8,000 digital businesses employing more than 80,0000 people.

Digital Minister Margot James said:

“We want everyone to benefit from the digital revolution and by working in partnership with industry we can make sure that we’re giving people the skills they need to succeed in the future.

“Greater Manchester has a thriving and growing tech sector and as part of our modern Industrial Strategy we’re helping to make the UK one of the world’s most digitally skilled nations.”

Mayor of Greater Manchester, Andy Burnham said:

“Ensuring people in Greater Manchester have the skills they need to access the jobs that are being created in our outstanding digital and tech sector will be a key part of making our post-Brexit future a success.

“Greater Manchester is already leading the way with the devolution of adult skills funding and creating our own Local Industrial Strategy, alongside the Government, to ensure everyone here can access good jobs and benefit from the growth in our economy.  This project will help take this work even further.

“Our devolved administrations are primed and ready to make decisions on key domestic agendas and with further devolution over areas like skills, we can truly make the difference people need.”

The project will be co-funded with employers and will particularly look to encourage training provision that is offered flexibly so that those already in work or with other responsibilities can benefit from opportunities to develop new digital skills and move into exciting new roles.

This will support the Local Industrial Strategy for Greater Manchester and complement the devolution of adult skills funding which is making it more responsive to the needs of local employers.

The announcement builds on the other good news for Greater Manchester in the budget, following the plans outlined for the Greater Manchester Local Industrial Strategy.

The progress statement published this week showcases the work that has been done so far by local leaders in the Northern Powerhouse who are working with the Government and businesses to identify economic opportunities that the region can seize in the years to come.

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