We've had a very busy year, with several top priorities! We wanted to play a fundamental part in growing our knowledge sharing environment by offering regular in-house tech workshops to meet the demands of the business. We wanted to provide relevant tech training for our employees, by our employees. In essence removing the need to supply expensive (and in some occasions poor quality) external training. And we wanted to continue to grow and improve our Tech Academy Graduate Programme brand with local universities across Yorkshire. Working to demystify what a career in technology really entails and inspiring more female students to consider tech as a career option. In short, staying true to our mission to proactively grow our own technical talent in order to future proof the needs of the business.
And have you been able to deliver on it?
We have run over 46 tech workshops covering 22 topics including; Agile, Coding for Beginners, Kafka, Kubernetes, React and many more. Saving the business c. £350k in external training costs in the last 8 months. We've also been actively promoting our Tech Academy brand externally, most recently presenting at the Women of Silicon Roundabout Conference in London which is attended by more than 4,500 passionate female technologists.
Biggest achievement this year?
Of course, the success of our numerous in-house workshops. But most importantly, bringing our Tech Academy Graduate Programme recruitment in-house which has allowed us to create a more authentic and lean process for candidates. Also knowing our various activities onsite at universities are paying off in helping to encourage more female students to consider a career in tech. This year we have a 40% gender split of females attending assessment days in Jan!
Also, the success of our DevOps Bootcamp back in April which was designed to upskill 6 tech career changers into Junior DevOps Engineers by immersing them in a 6-week training programme. The feedback from the participants on the training and from their managers on their performance so far has been overwhelmingly positive!
And your biggest disaster?
Not having enough meeting rooms to meet the demand for training workshops!
What’s the biggest thing you’ve learnt?
In order to achieve great things, you need support and lots of it. I’m very fortunate that we have so many knowledgeable and passionate technologists that are happy to contribute to the Tech Academy offering. We couldn’t have had the success we’ve had if it wasn’t for their time and effort. So thank you all!
And what’s your main priority for 2019?
Continue to meet the tech training demands of the business as we merge with The Stars Group - helping to create a platform for tech knowledge to be shared across both businesses. Also, growing our online offering to make our training more accessible to internal and external tech enthusiasts.