The BBC and BT have unveiled plans to provide 6,000 people with the digital skills needed to find jobs at the broadcaster and telecoms firm and in the wider employment market.
BT will create 1,000 new apprenticeships and graduate jobs, while the BBC will give up to 5,000 unemployed young people the opportunity to learn digital skills during a nine-week course.
BT boosts recruitment
BT’s jobs will be created across the UK in locations including London, Glasgow, Belfast, Cardiff, Newcastle, Manchester and Leeds.
The posts are split into 700 apprenticeships and 300 graduate positions in areas such as software development, IT and digital technology.
Prime minister David Cameron welcomed BT’s move to create more jobs for young people, saying that the security of a monthly wage gives them “a chance of a better future”.
“Backing those who want to work hard and get on with the skills they need to succeed is a key part of our long-term economic plan to secure Britain’s recovery,” he said.
A third of the new apprentices will work in BT’s Openreach division on extending the company’s fibre network across the UK.
BT will add to the recruitment drive by offering 1,000 vocational training and work experience placements for unemployed young people between 2015 and 2016.
The BBC, meanwhile, will launch a Make it Digital Traineeship programme in partnership with the Department for Work and Pensions and the Skills Funding Agency.
The traineeships will give up to 5,000 unemployed young people the opportunity to learn technical skills to help them secure jobs or further apprenticeships.
The programme will be funded by the government’s Adult Skills Budget, and run by the Skills Funding Agency with support from other organisations. These partnerships prompted the BBC to claim the traineeship initiative as the largest of its kind.
Trainees will have six weeks of classroom-based learning over the nine-week period to educate them in basic digital skills.
This will involve planning social media campaigns, creating websites and making short web-based videos.
A three-week structured work placement in local companies will make up the remainder of the time. Those who show potential will be encouraged to apply for a BBC Apprenticeship.
BBC director general Lord Tony Hall expressed pride that the BBC has hit its target of apprentices making up one percent of its workforce.
“We need to keep on showing leadership, and keep on bringing people together in a way which only the BBC can,” he said.
The overall goal is to improve the UK’s digital skills, as many organisations and technology firms are concerned that the UK lacks the skills it needs to fill future jobs.
This can be a challenge that often requires a more practical approach, rather than traditional recruitment methods.
Cyber Security Challenge UK recently staged a cyber attack on the BT Tower to find the UK’s top hobby-hackers.