Bath Digital Festival is addressing the current digital skills shortage through the Bath Digital Skills Exchange Programme. The programme will include three years of testing and growth with the aim of leaving a digital skills legacy in Bath and to ensure the project continues beyond 2022.
Automation and robotics is changing the employment landscape and, in turn, the need for digital skills as a basic standard in the workforce is even more important in order to fill the vacancies available. Given the current pandemic that has hit our world, this challenge is only going to get greater with more people out of work and seeking new opportunities.
Even before the pandemic there was a digital skills shortage in Bath. Business are struggling to recruit the talent they need, because:
- Talent remains in the larger cities or, if heading to the South West, bypasses Bath straight to Bristol.
- The talent that does exist isn’t aware of the businesses and opportunities that reside in Bath.
Bath Digital Festival is tackling the skills and jobs gap head on and supporting businesses to find the talent they need by:
- Showcasing the businesses that reside in Bath.
- Showcasing the digital and tech roles available in Bath.
- Attracting talent to the region by putting Bath on the map as a tech hub.
- Matching talent with businesses and jobs.
The BDF Digital Skills Exchange will improve the flow of talent into businesses. With this project, there are two main areas to address:
- Help people to realise they have the skills required for the digital and tech roles that exists.
- Unlock the working environment by opening the doors of Bath businesses - showcasing the work they do and the digital roles available.
The BDF Digital Skills Exchange will run in three parts (outlined below); each part linking businesses with four talent pool types:
- Young people starting their digital journey.
- Those looking to reskill.
- Returning workers.
- Those already in tech and looking for their next step.
Part One: Digital Skills Roadshow
Taking to the road, BDF will go out on location to host events for each talent pool. Each event will offer information and workshops around creativity and problem-solving skills and how that can be transformed into a digital career.
Part Two: Bath’s Open Doors
Bringing talent into businesses and businesses to talent, BDF will unlock the work environment in Bath and the surrounding area. Businesses who join the programme will open their doors to the four talent pools inviting them to access the real working environment and giving them the opportunity to talk to the people already doing the digital roles.
Part Three: Bath Digital Portal
An online hub for businesses and talent to use as an information portal and resource tool for recruitment and career development.
The programme will run over three years starting with a pilot launching at the Bath Digital Festival in October 2020. The aim is to leave a Digital Skills legacy that will continue to run self-sufficiently from 2023 and beyond.
Bath Digital Festival is seeking grant funding to develop the programme in years two and three.
The pilot study will be significantly reliant on business sponsorship in order to run.
The legacy programme will require the continued investment and support of local businesses who will, in turn, reap the benefits of their involvement. Bath Digital Festival will continue to apply for grant funding to support the programme wherever possible.
How Businesses Can Get Involved
Bath Digital Festival is seeking grant funding opportunities, partners and sponsors to kick-start and develop the programme. If you’d like to be involved, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.