Closing the digital skills gap

Multiverse is widening access to training.


Demand for digital skills in the UK is growing. So much so that there’s a shortage of people with the skills employers need to help their organisations thrive. It’s called the digital skills gap.

Helping to close it is a big priority for our firm. So we’re collaborating with training company Multiverse to help more people access training that can help them reach their potential.

Where there’s challenge, there’s opportunity. And the professionals who are making the most of free digital skills training courses, offered through the Deloitte x Multiverse Skills Hub, are grabbing it with both hands.

Some people taking part have told us that learning new skills in areas like data literacy and business transformation has empowered them to find solutions at work. Others that they’ve been able to apply technical skills on the job as soon as they learn them.

It’s exactly what we want to hear, because the ambitions behind the hub are to help close the digital skills gap and enable companies to invest in their most important asset: their people.

The initiative is the result of a collaboration between Deloitte and training company Multiverse – and it’s all about sharing resources and skills to help people reach their potential.

The skills to thrive

The funding model for the Skills Hub diverts unused apprenticeship levy, donated by large companies, to smaller companies that have a digital skills gap.

Our collaboration came about when Deloitte’s Kariel Parian and Tom Rees saw a way our firm could support Multiverse’s work and boost skills among some of the venture-backed businesses and charity partners we work alongside every day.

“Every business needs people with the right skills to thrive,” says Tom, a director in Deloitte Private, the part of our firm that serves privately-owned businesses, their founders and investors.

“Through Deloitte’s networks, we’re encouraging more businesses to divert their unused levy to Multiverse, who use it to fund courses that are offered through a training hub, boosting digital skills in organisations where they’re needed the most.”

So for any large business that isn’t using its full apprenticeship levy and wants to make a difference, we have a clear message: why not get in touch and help us make your unused levy matter?

The right thing to do

First to benefit from the hub and gain access to free training in digital, data and technology skills were the businesses named in the Deloitte Tech Fast 50, which is an annual ranking of the UK’s fastest-growing tech companies.

“Helping to boost digital skills within companies like these is the right thing to do,” says Kariel, a manager in Deloitte Private.

“The digital skills gap means that organisations with smaller budgets for salaries, like small to medium sized enterprises and start-ups, are in competition for talent with everyone from big tech companies and investment banks.”

Now, the same training opportunities have been opened up to some of the social impact organisations Deloitte works alongside. And for Tom, this has been the most rewarding part of the project so far.

“Charities are like any other organisations and need to keep up with tech-driven business practices,” he says.  “Better access to digital skills could have a big impact on their day-to-day work and the support they offer in communities.”

Help us bridge the gap

The programme is already making a difference to those taking part, with many of the initial cohort having received a promotion or role extension.

In the years ahead, we’re planning to support many more people to learn in-demand digital skills that can contribute to brighter futures, fulfilling tech careers and business growth.

That means encouraging more large corporations to donate their unused levy and with demand for this training high, Kariel, Tom and all of those involved with the project at Multiverse and Deloitte want to do as much as they can.

The apprenticeship levy and Multiverse

The success of the programme hinges on making use of the apprenticeship levy – but what is it exactly?

It’s a charge made by the government to every UK organisation with a payroll greater than £3 million, designed to encourage investment in apprenticeships.

If the levy isn’t used, it goes back to the government. But companies can choose to donate up to a quarter of their levy to other organisations through Multiverse, which is rated by Ofsted as an ‘outstanding’ provider of professional development and career starter apprenticeships.

“The number one barrier for fast growing companies right now is access to people with the right skills to power growth,” says Multiverse President, Jeremy Duggan.

“This use of levy funding allows us to offer even more fast-growing companies the tools to get the right competencies into their organisation, while offering people at every stage of their career an opportunity to learn 21st century skillsets."


Kariel Parian


020 7007 7470

Email Kariel

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