Manchester awarded £3m fund to tackle skills shortage

DataIQ News

The Government is to invest £3 million to help strengthen digital and data skills in Greater Manchester and the surrounding areas.

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

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

The project will be co-funded with employers and will 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 skills and move into new roles.

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

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 added: “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.”