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Microsoft promises digital training for public servants



Company pledges to help 30,000 develop relevant skills over the next few years

Microsoft has said it plans to do its bit for public sector transformation by providing training in digital skills for 30,000 public servants in the UK.

The company announced the plan as part of a broader national skills programme to coincide with a visit to its Reading headquarters by Chancellor Phillip Hammond.

Other elements include free online digital literacy training for the public, a Cloud Skills Initiative to train 500,000 people in using relevant technology, and supporting 30,000 new digital apprentices by by 2020.

The only detail of the public sector skills training made available so far is that it will range from basic digital literacy to more advanced skills, and Microsoft said it will enable organisations to deliver transformative services.

The company produces a number of software platforms – including Dynamics 365, Outlook and Azure – that it says can be used as commercial, off-the-shelf options in redesigning services. It would be a surprise if the training does not include familiarising public servants with the capabilities of the platforms.

Since 2012 it has worked with various partners to support 11,000 digital apprentices.


Philip Hammond said: “This is further evidence that Britain is one of the best places in the world to do digital business. Microsoft’s commitment to training, technology and apprenticeships will ensure that we remain at the cutting edge of innovation.

“Our technology industry is fundamental to securing future economic growth and this government is committed to ensuring it continues to thrive. It’s a key part of our Industrial Strategy to back Britain for the long term, creating the conditions where business can flourish, driving growth for the whole nation.”

Image: Joseph L Ridgway II, CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

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