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(L-R) Leader of East Riding of Yorkshire Council Jonathan Owen, Deputy Leader of Hull City Council Hester Bridges, Digital Minister Chris Philp MP, Professor Rebecca Huxley-Binns, Chair of the Humber Local Digital Skills Partnership, James Newman OBE, Chair of the Hull and East Yorkshire Local Enterprise Partnership.

 

A drive to improve the digital skills of thousands of people across the Humber is being launched today following match-funding from the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS).

It comes as new figures reveal Hull and East Yorkshire’s tech sector is one of the fastest growing in the UK.

Tech Minister Chris Philp visited Hull today to formally launch a new Local Digital Skills Partnership, a new campaign aiming to equip people for the region’s digital jobs boom and ensure more residents can benefit from the thriving local tech sector.

New data from smarter job search engine Adzuna and Dealroom published today reveals the number of employees in Hull and East Yorkshire’s digital sector is expanding at eight per cent per year, making it the fastest growing region in the UK for digital jobs.

It follows a report published by DCMS which showed the region’s digital sector is expected to add an extra £1.6 billion to the economy every year by 2025 creating an additional 42,200 jobs.

The partnership – a coalition of local authorities, businesses and education providers – will make it easier for businesses and residents to identify gaps in their skills and access training on a range of topics from software development and data management to digital marketing.

Digital Minister Chris Philp said:

“Yorkshire and the Humber has massive potential to be a leading UK tech destination which will put rocket boosters on the region’s economy and help unlock new innovations that improve people’s lives.

“But we must make sure people have the skills and talents needed for these jobs of the future. Our Local Digital Skills Partnership will give residents and businesses the chance to be part of the digital revolution happening on their doorstep.”

Following a successful independent pilot, the Humber Local Digital Skills Partnership has been match-funded by DCMS to continue its important work in the community.

Since 2018 DCMS has successfully run partnerships in seven other locations, including Lancashire, Chesire and Warrington and the West Midlands. Being part of the partnership means local councils can benefit from monthly networking events and sessions with industry, learning from leading skills programmes like Google Digital Garage and the Lloyds Bank Academy.

These initiatives have brought benefits including improved career opportunities for local people – including from groups typically underrepresented in the digital workforce – and a better understanding for businesses of the training provision available up and down the country.

Professor Rebecca Huxley-Binns, Chair of the Humber Local Digital Skills Partnership said:

“We were delighted to welcome the government Minister and DCMS colleagues to launch our Local Digital Skills Partnership. We are very proud of the partnership’s achievements to date and we thank the DCMS for their support. We look forward to continuing to address the digital skills challenges and opportunities in the Humber, with our stakeholders.”

The Leader of Hull City Council Daren Hale said:

“The Humber region has led the way in boosting digital skills and creating opportunities in the digital sector, so I’m pleased that the government has recognised the success of the Humber Local Digital Skills Partnership pilot. The council has continued to support the LDSP, sitting on its steering group to offer support and expertise to help shape the digital future of the city. The partnership has proven to be very valuable to the council and the local economy.”

James Newman OBE, the Chair of the HEY LEP said:

“The HEY LEP welcomes today’s announcement and associated funding from DCMS, which will enable us to continue the very important work of the Humber Local Digital Skills Partnership, whose main objective is to increase digital skills capabilities in the region. Maximising the Humber’s existing world class digital infrastructure, alongside accelerating our digital skills capabilities, are key pillars of the HEY LEP’s recently launched Economic Growth and Workforce Wellbeing Strategy. The Humber Local Digital Skills Partnership already plays a fundamental role in the delivery of the digital elements of this important strategy and we look forward to continuing to work with our many partners and stakeholders from the business, education and technical sectors to ensure successful delivery of this programme and on our commitment to the region and to government.”

Neil Cavill, Head of Business Improvement at Arco, said:

“We are delighted to be involved in the launch of the Humber Local Digital Skills Partnership.

“The event was a great opportunity to celebrate the amazing work being done across the Humber to promote digital skills and to look ahead to what will be needed in this region to support careers in this area of work in the future.

“At Arco, we are committed to supporting our colleagues to further develop their digital skills and to nurture the next generation of digital talent through our Future Experts programme, which gives apprenticeship opportunities to students from Ron Dearing UTC.”