Nationwide has established a range of partnerships with organisations to address the technology skills shortage the UK is facing.
This area of our website offers information about our commitment to addressing the IT skills shortage in the UK through partnerships with schools and IT training organisations. For information about our apprenticeship schemes visit Apprenticeship jobs (opens in a new window).
What's on this page
Helping to build skills in technology
In 2018, 4.3 million people in the UK had no basic digital skills. Another 6.4 million only had basic abilities online (Source: ONS Exploring the UK’s digital divide (opens in a new window)). Access to employer-led education will help people who otherwise may not have had the opportunities to pursue a career in tech. Through our partnerships we hope to inspire young people to explore STEM-related subjects and careers.
Swindon and Wiltshire Institute of Technology (IoT)
Institutes of Technology (IoTs) are a key part of the skills revolution already underway in this country, helping to meet the productivity and social mobility challenges set out as part of the Government’s Industrial Strategy (opens in a new window). The IoTs are a key mechanism to support post-coronavirus recovery plans. Nationwide has partnered with the Swindon and Wiltshire IoT, 1 of 12 which will open during 2021.
The Swindon and Wiltshire IoT is employer led, rather than learner led, which means employers will define what it delivers. It will be physically based on the North Star campus site, repurposing existing buildings. It will offer a mixture of remote and face-to-face learning to students and aims to bring new career opportunities to the region.
Nationwide will play a crucial role in the leadership, implementation and running of the IoT (including the definition of the curriculum), ensuring it delivers the needs of Nationwide and other regional employers.
Nationwide will utilise the IoT as the delivery provider for all technology apprenticeships and has committed to support the wellbeing and mental health of all those studying at the IoT regardless of whether they are working for Nationwide or elsewhere.
STEM learning – Enthuse Partnership
The aim of an Enthuse Partnership is to inspire and encourage young people to pursue STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) related subjects and careers.
Enthuse Partnerships enable employers to collaborate with schools and colleges to improve young people’s engagement and participation with STEM-related activities. The main objective of the partnership is to raise attainment in STEM subjects, to enhance learning through developing teachers’ knowledge, and to improve social mobility of disadvantaged and under-represented individuals.
Nationwide has partnered with STEM Learning to embark on a 2-year Enthuse Partnership. STEM Learning will be working with secondary schools based in London and Swindon to put together an action plan to inspire both students and teachers through delivering activities such as STEM clubs and providing bespoke training resources.
Code Club is a voluntary initiative, founded in 2012. The initiative aims to provide opportunities for children aged 9 to 13 to develop coding skills through free after-school clubs. As of November 2015, over 3,800 schools and other public venues established a Code Club, regularly attended by an estimated 44,000 young people across the UK (See references: Wired - Raspberry Pi buys Code Club (opens in a new window)) and Code Club (opens in a new window).
The organisation also expanded internationally, and there are now over 13,000 Code Clubs operating worldwide. Volunteer programmers and software developers give their time to run Code Club sessions, passing on their programming skills and mentoring the young students. Children create their own computer games, animations and websites, learning how to use technology creatively.
Nationwide supports local Code Clubs to inspire the next generation of future technologists. Volunteers from Nationwide have been working with teachers to support the students throughout these after-school clubs. Nationwide is planning on hosting their own Code Clubs (at our admin offices) when possible (post coronavirus recovery).
National Centre for Computing Education (NCCE)
The National Centre of Computing Education (NCCE) is a government appointed consortium that is focused on re-writing the computer science curriculum and in turn supporting the re-skilling of teachers to deliver it. NCCE supports teachers from primary through to A Level to help them improve their computing skills and knowledge.
Only 12.4% of students opt to take computer science as a GCSE and of this only 20% are girls. Therefore, there is a specific focus on ensuring the curriculum is appealing to girls to increase the uptake of computer science at GCSE and A Level (Source: Teach Computing (opens in a new window)). Nationwide has committed to contribute towards the NCCE bursaries (until 2024) that schools can claim towards the costs of releasing teachers enabling them to undertake training.
Tech She Can® Charter
The Tech She Can® Charter (See: PwC Research 2017 (opens in a new window) and PwC Tech She Can website (opens in a new window)) is a commitment by organisations to work together to encourage young women to pursue technology subjects and careers.
In 2017, PwC conducted research to understand why so few women were choosing technology as a career choice in the UK. The research revealed young women had a lack of female role models working in the industry, as well as a lack of opportunities being put forward to them (Source: PwC – Women in technology (opens in a new window)). Consequently, PwC set out to create a network of organisations working together to achieve a common goal. Tech She Can® was born and nurtured by PwC and will become a registered charity during 2021.
The Tech She Can® charter pledges aim to tackle the issues women face entering the technology industry at a societal level by inspiring and educating.
Nationwide is a strategic partner with Tech She Can®. Along with representation on the steering committee, it will look to:
- share best practice amongst organisations as leaders in diversity in technology
- lead and support initiatives to encourage more girls and women to consider a career in technology
- encourage schools and teachers to use the free Tech She Can® training, toolkits and materials
- use the power of media for good to reach the right audiences including girls and young women, parents, teachers and careers advisers (Source: PwC – Women in technology (opens in a new window)).