Transition into a digital career with the Gateway into Tech programme - Software Cornwall

Mission to Mars Teamwork
Software Cornwall and EU logo

Gateway into Tech programme (part-funded by European Social Fund) is about to welcome a new cohort as it continues its work to bridge the digital skills gap for employers and job seekers.

Software Cornwall’s Gateway into Tech programme is hosting a learning event day on 19th May at the FibreHub in Pool. The day is aimed at helping more people transition into digital careers while connecting them with eager employers who are currently recruiting. 

The digital skills gap is affecting businesses throughout the UK, with 72% of large companies and 49% of SMEs reported to be suffering. 

Cornwall is one of the UK’s fastest-growing digital communities,  having grown an astounding 76% since 2010. 

The UK tech boom sees one in eight job opportunities being in the digital sector, yet 4.5% of Cornwall is unemployed.

New Approach to Match Talent to Business

A different approach is needed to assist people looking for new opportunities transition into the digital sector, helping them find employment with tech companies that have vacancies waiting to be filled. This is why the Gateway into Tech programme was started, to make tech more accessible and help people maximise their transferable skills. 

Gateway into Tech is part of The Business Clusters Project which is part-financed by the European Union Social Fund. It aims to engage with businesses, giving them a new way of recruiting. It also works with individuals, helping them gain the specifically identified skills that the businesses require. 

Software Cornwall is collaborating closely with these businesses to develop a learning programme suitable for their needs.
Thanks to The European Social Fund, there is funding available for the businesses that take people on as placements to help with training and salary costs. 

Last year, Software Cornwall welcomed their first cohort of people onto the Gateway to Tech programme, which ended up being a massive success – for both employers and job seekers alike. 

Robert Wiltshire, Education Outreach Coordinator & Digital Skills Developer for Software Cornwall said:

“The demand for talent in the tech industry is outstripping the supply. The Gateway into Tech, with guidance from enterprises themselves, aims to provide a new source of experienced, motivated personnel. Companies are needed to show willing in providing the individuals with the opportunity to demonstrate their skills to bring benefits to the industry.”

Benefits Being Realised

Tanist is a technology solutions company that got involved in the Gateway into Tech programme and offered to take on temporary placements. They ended up hiring two people through the programme and are benefitting from the additional training and funding offered. 

Mathieu French, Lead software developer at Tanist and Gateway to Tech employer said:

“I can honestly say that the dedication of Sam and Luke (our Gateway to Tech placements) is something I’ve never seen before, they have gone above and beyond for Tanist in every aspect of their work and we’ve confirmed that we will be making their roles permanent.

In the first 2-3 months we’ve managed to automate processes and deliver work to clients and we’ve been able to increase our exposure from a marketing perspective, putting a definitive brand in place. It has meant that business growth has ballooned, we’ve gained work in the short term, as well as having skillsets and the right mindsets to tackle  any problem-solving issues that crop up.”

So far 50% of the first Gateway into Tech cohort are now employed in new tech roles, and it is looking hopeful that more will transition into new roles later this year. 

Giz Edwards is one of the people now employed after Gateway into Tech, he has had an interesting and varied career but is now employed full time by hiyield, a digital product studio in St Austell. 

Giz Edwards, Sales and Marketing Executive at hiyield and Gateway into Tech  said:

“Although my role is not as a developer, the Gateway to Tech programme has helped my ability to do my job as I have a greater understanding of the complexity of programming, which gives me the ability to be able to advise clients better and give them a better expectation for what we can deliver.” 

If you’re a business in Cornwall and The Isles of Scilly looking to fill digital roles, or someone looking to transition into a digital career, you won’t want to miss the next Gateway to Tech event. It’s a great opportunity to learn and network with business owners, managers and recruiters, as well as prospective employees. 

Thursday 19th May at the FibreHub in Pool. 

Sign up to attend now