UK Government's Institute of Coding announces industry advisory board

Google, Amazon and IBM sign up to government's new Institute of Coding industry board, set up to drive digital skills across the UK along with representatives from large and small businesses

by News Reporter on 28 September 2018 15:08

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The Institute of Coding (IoC), has today announced the appointment of its industry advisory board in collaboration with techUK. The board consists of 18 senior executives from the UK’s largest organisations and representatives from small businesses, chaired by Sheila Flavell, COO of FDM Group.

The new board, which hosted its first meeting at the start of the month, will operate as a joint venture with techUK, the organisation which represents over 950 technology companies. A key role of the board will be to provide direction and insight into the needs of industry to shape the development of digital skills courses with the IoC’s academic partners. Its members include the following companies; Google, FSB, techUK, FDM Group, Cisco, Go Compare, AWS, BP Downstream, JP Morgan, Channel 4, Deloitte, Wipro, Shell Downstream, IBM, BT Group, Design Council, HMRC and Microsoft.

The news comes following the launch of the IoC’s new £2.3million fund for groups to help reduce the digital skills gap. The fund provided by the Office for Students will be allocated to no more than ten successful bidding groups, all of which must propose clear plans to improve access to digital skills education, enhance graduate employability and employment outcomes, and address identified skills needs. The first job for the Industry Advisory Board was to assess the £2.3million fund and provide guidance to potential bidding groups from an industry perspective.

The board has emphasised that diversity and inclusivity should be a fundamental part of all proposals alongside specific initiatives that help individuals and businesses to identify coherent, connected pathways to degree level education and on to employment.

Sheila Flavell, Chair, IoC Industry Advisory Board comments: “The IoC board will enable industry to have a strong voice in the creation of new academic courses and training programmes. With UK companies crying out for digitally-adept graduates with high levels of technical proficiency, the board will help communicate specific requirements to ensure the next generation are equipped with the skills they need to thrive in the workplace. “By bringing together leaders from some of the country’s most influential businesses and industry organisations, the IoC will gain vital insight into the skills companies need and the areas of digital expertise they consider to be in short supply. The appointment of our new industry board underlines the IoC’s commitment to collaboration between the worlds of business and academia to spread digital skills across the UK.”

Julian David, Chief Executive Officer, techUK comments: “With technology playing a vital role in the future of the UK economy, the new IoC board will help relay the digital needs of industry to academic institutions. The combined experience and insight from some of the country’s most innovative organisations will play a vital role in shaping the courses and training programmes to equip the next generation with the skills they need to thrive in the workplace of the future.”

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