Government unveils £200M digital skills training package

The UK Government has unveiled a £200 million investment in digital skills training, aimed at bolstering careers in sectors like digital technology, green energy, and construction.

This funding will focus on specific regional skills, shaped by local businesses and their skills improvement plans. The goal is to develop regionally tailored digitally skilled workforces to drive local economic growth.

Universities and government-backed schemes will deliver the training, supporting the creation of numerous new jobs in areas like environmental consultancy and electric vehicle production, aligning with the government's growth strategies.

Margo Waldorf, Founder of Change Awards, remarked: “Digital skills are vital in today’s technology-driven workplace, especially in managing fast-evolving technologies like AI. It’s encouraging to see the Government's commitment to this sector. Change managers face the challenge of integrating these skills into transformation projects, balancing AI adoption with its collaborative role alongside employees to enhance productivity. Equipping the next generation with digital skills prepares them for a smoother transition into the workforce and supports change management across business sectors.”

Sjuul van der Leeuw, CEO of Deployteq, added: “The industry desperately needs skilled individuals adept in maximizing technology potential, particularly in areas like digital marketing and sales. Understanding the digital market and utilizing tools like Generative AI is key in evolving digital skills. So, the Government's investment in this field is commendable.”

“Businesses should also focus on adopting user-friendly tools like marketing automation platforms, reducing the need for advanced technical knowledge. Choosing the right tools and training staff to use them effectively is crucial. Whether it's for product promotion or travel industry campaigns, having a team skilled in digital marketing is essential.”

The government asserts that this regional investment is part of a broader skills training initiative, including T-level programmes, free job courses, and skills bootcamps. Over 40,000 individuals participated in a skills bootcamp in the last financial year.

However, Elizabeth Anderson, CEO of the Digital Poverty Alliance, commented: “It's positive to see the government acknowledging the significance of digital skills, particularly for local communities, in its latest investment initiative. Our research with Deloitte indicates that between 13 and 19 million UK residents are digitally excluded, lacking skills, devices, or connectivity. Addressing this issue is a step forward. Considering our reliance on online services for education, healthcare, and banking, we must not overlook those unable to access these services. While the government's skill package is a move in the right direction, further efforts are necessary to ensure universal access to basic digital skills and technology.”

Education Secretary Gillian Keegan stated: “This investment is about enhancing local industries, enriching people's skills, and futureproofing our economy and the next generation's career prospects.

“Our local skills projects will unite regional entities, businesses, and educational institutions to meet employers' specific needs, cultivating a skilled workforce and expanding local economies.”