UKFast leads the way on digital skills

Article date: Fri, 16 Oct 2015 15:05 GMT

Director of training and education - Aaron Saxton

UKFast's apprenticeship scheme has been awarded accredited status by the Institute of Engineering and Technology (IET), taking the firm another step towards becoming a leading provider of computer science and digital education.

Accreditation from the largest multidisciplinary professional engineering institution in the world provides the firm's apprentices with access to an educational and professional development pathway, allowing them to work towards the status of Chartered Engineer, a globally recognised qualification.

UKFast works in partnership with over 30 schools and colleges in Greater Manchester and around 10% of its 250-strong team are current or former apprentices of 'UKFast University.'

The fast-growing tech firm has set itself the goal of putting the brakes on the digital skills gap and CEO Lawrence Jones expects the educational policy will boost UKFast's ability to fill high-end technical positions in the long-term.

Jones said: "We, as the tech business community, need to be more pro-active in addressing the shortage of skilled developers, programmers and engineers. We can either moan about the fact that we haven't got enough tech talent or we can create it ourselves. The talent is out there in this country, we just need to channel and nurture it in the right way.

"Our new accredited programme confirms that we are doing all the right things, and we will continue to improve.

"There are many engaging and well paid career paths in this sector and we are looking at alternative ways of getting the right people in. The traditional career path of school, exams, university, work does not suit everyone and we are failing some of those who don't fit into that particular pathway."

Graduates of UKFast's apprenticeship scheme are now entitled, as registered technicians of the Engineering Coun cil, to use the 'postnominals' - ICTTech and MIET - after their names. Registration to the Engineering Council is a globally recognised standard, awarded only to proven, competent and professional engineers and technicians.

Director of training and development at UKFast, Aaron Saxton said: "It's amazing for us to get this recognition from the IET. It validates the quality of our delivery and it gives our apprentices an even greater opportunity to have a brilliant career.

"One of this year's apprentices is already working towards chartered engineer status, which is a Master's level qualification, and we hope to have a constant stream of potential chartered engineers coming through our doors in years to come."

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