PwC and Aire Logic have become the latest companies to join an initiative designed to boost diversity in digital talent by encouraging young people from underrepresented areas and backgrounds to consider a tech career.
International professional services firm PWC and Northern-based tech company Aire Logic have joined the list of Leeds employers sponsoring the Growing Talent Digital Leeds being coordinated and delivered by social value professionals Ahead Partnership.
The initiative, which won the Diversity & Inclusion Award at this year’s Leeds Digital Festival Awards, aims to develop young people’s understanding of the importance of digital skills in many different sectors and careers.
The initiative recently completed its first year of employer-led activities, including masterclasses, careers panels, online resources and festivals, having already reached 12,000 young people across the city. Of those young people involved, 90% said that participating in the programme helped them understand the skills needed to work in digital.
PwC and Aire Logic join existing programme partners, AND Digital; Infinity Works; Netcompany; BJSS; Leeds City Council; and Leeds Trinity University in sponsoring the initiative focused on generating diverse digital talent through its work to help break down barriers of perception and prejudice around jobs that require digital skills.
Megan Lipp, head of development at Ahead Partnership, said: “It’s fantastic to be welcoming PwC and Aire Logic to join this important initiative and help develop a more diverse and inclusive future for the city’s business community.
“Digital is a fast-growing industry that spans sectors from professional services to education, and so a collaborative approach is needed to inform young people about how they can develop skills to pursue successful and rewarding digital careers, in turn helping employers to meet future demand for workforce talent.
“An incredible 249 volunteers from 50 businesses from across the city supported our first year of activity, and we welcome other digital employers in Leeds interested in joining this easy and flexible programme to get in touch and find out more about how they can get involved.”
Jo Wan, Principal Consultant Agile Delivery at Aire Logic, said: “We’re really proud to sponsor Growing Talent Digital Leeds and work in collaboration with the wide range of businesses across the city to make a meaningful contribution towards breaking down barriers, myths and stereotypes about working in digital roles and empowering young people with the digital skills they need for future success.
“The best thing about this programme is the feeling you get seeing young people excited about the possibilities that a career in tech could bring them. We’ve taken so much from the events we’ve been involved in so far, and we are excited about our plans for the next year.”
Other businesses looking to make a meaningful difference to the city’s future workforce are invited to join the companies already signed up for the initiative. Employers of all sizes and sectors that require digital skills, from SMEs to global firms, and the technology industry to the professional services sector, can find out more at Ahead Partnership’s website.