E-Skills calls for tech industry support for new job creation crusade

News 1 Feb, 2013

IT skills body wants industry feedback to shape its bid for Government funding.

E-Skills UK is calling on tech firms of all sizes to join its latest IT skills and job creation crusade.

The initiative is part of e-Skills bid to take part in the Government’s £340 million Employer Ownership of Skills Pilot, which encourages employers to create employment projects that could provide UK plc with an economic boost.

Viable projects will receive Government funding, and should aim to create jobs, skill-up existing workers and, in turn, drive economic growth.

Anything that gets employers involved in designing the solutions to their own problems has got to be a good thing.

E-Skills wants the IT industry to pool its resources and provide feedback on its bid plans, through its new Tech Skills Partnership.

The IT skills body’s plans have already won the support of Accenture, Microsoft, BT, Capgemini, Cisco and HP, as well as a handful of non-IT private and public sector organisations.

Prospective participants will be initially encouraged to share their thoughts on e-Skills' plans through an online survey, so the group knows where to focus its project work.

Olly Benzecry, managing director for UK and Ireland at Accenture, said the scheme has the potential to make a big difference to the country’s economic prospects.

“By getting together as an industrial partnership and strongly influencing the technology skills agenda, we will develop the sustainable technology talent the economy needs,” Benzecry added.

In a statement to IT Pro, Joanna Poplawska, performance director of fellow IT skills body the Corporate IT Forum, said initiatives like this will play an important role in tackling EU-wide tech skill shortages in the future.

For instance, she said there are fears that up to 700,000 IT-related vacancies could go unfilled in the EU by 2015.

“It would be naïve to think that the IT departments of large UK-based organisations won’t be amongst the worst affected given how many major businesses and multinationals are based here,” she said.

“Anything that gets employers involved in designing the solutions to their own problems has got to be a good thing,” she added.