National Coding Week 2021: Empowering the Digital Future

4 Minutes

It's #NationalCodingWeek (13th – 17th September 2021)What is it?National Coding We...

It's #NationalCodingWeek (13th – 17th September 2021)

What is it?

National Coding Week is an annual event that prompts people to learn new digital skills or share the skills they have. There are plenty of free resources available to get started! Whether you’re a graduate, business, tech novice or still at school – there are ways to get involved.

Why is it important?

Fewer than half of British employers believe young people are leaving full-time education with sufficient advanced digital skills, while 76% of firms think a lack of digital skills would hit their profitability.

This, combined with a major focus and investment in digital transformation across all industries in the UK, elevated by the Pandemic and the need for all types of organisations to digitise in order to survive, has resulted in a national shortage of digital and tech skills.

What progress has been made so far?

This year’s A-level results show that a record number of students have been placed on Computer Science degree courses in the UK, according to the latest UCAS data. The data also show that the number of students placed on Computer Science degree is up 5% since last year 60% higher than 10 years ago.

Notably, the number of female students studying Computer Science at A-level has also risen, up 13% from 2020. In fact, the number of female students studying Computer Science A-level this year has increased by more than 350% since 2015. However, we still have a long way to go to meet the rising demand for IT and Tech skills and we can all do something about it.

How can you get involved?

First steps, follow

Here you can take port in a number of activities depending on who you are:

  • If you are new to coding and want to have a go, then check out the local library or your local college which may have evening classes. You could, of course, start by reading through our suggestions: Coding – Where do I Start?
  • If you are an individual or business, why not use the hashtag #NationalCodingWeek and let everyone know how you got into coding / a digital job so you can inspire others
  • If you are a school and seeking ideas then check out this blog: Ideas for Schools
  • If you just want to have a bit of fun after a challenging year why not take part in our challenge!
  • As a longer term consideration, Microsoft also offer an easy entry to coding with their “Small Basics” Programme - For ages 7 to 107! This is one of the easiest ways to learn to code :

We all have an opportunity to shape the future of tech, how exciting is that?! Let us know how you get on!

Cognitive's Commitment

It’s more important than ever to encourage more diversity in the tech space. There are so many benefits to a diverse and inclusive workforce including; encouraging creativity and innovation and a correlation with financial performance and conflict resolution.

Unfortunately, there is still a huge gender imbalance when it comes to IT and tech roles; sub 20% on average. Specifically, if we look at those with coding and development skills in the UK, over 81% of the market are male whilst only 19% are female.

As a Microsoft Partner, Cognitive have committed to, and signed the Partner Pledge which includes a commitment to “Improve diversity of the UK technology workforce”. One way to encourage this, is to start at the beginning and encourage more individuals to take an interest and get involved in technology from the get-go!

This is why we are promoting this event and encouraging all those in our network to get involved. Let us know how you get on!


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