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MoD agrees digital skills partnership with Microsoft

MoD headquarters
Image source: GOV.UK, Open Government Licence v3.0

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) has set up a partnership with Microsoft to develop digital skills across the defence sector.

This will be part of the Digital Skills for Defence (Ds4D) programme, aimed at upskilling the military and civilian workforce.

The partnership will involve enabling training in the use of Microsoft products and services, helping to raise awareness of additional skills programmes and resources, and offering shadowing opportunities for senior MoD staff to encourage the sharing of best practice and adoption of innovative digital approaches.

The announcement follows the news of a similar deal with Amazon Web Services late last year.

The MoD said there has already been an event at the Microsoft Innovation Centre in London at which senior leaders in defence were encouraged to think about transforming the culture in the sector and collaborative working. The importance of digital skills was a major theme in the day.

Critical capability uplift

MoD director functional integration, Claire Fry, commented: “Our ambition is to deliver and then continuously adapt a critical capability uplift for defence through the delivery of a world class digital skills education programme for the whole workforce, our leaders and for digital professionals. This is fundamental to retaining our advantage and keeping ahead of our competition.

“Our partnership with companies like Microsoft enables us to bring in leading edge digital learning for defence.”

The ministry’s chief information officer, Charles Forte, said: “The Digital Skills for Defence Programme is enabling us to build, support and drive digital capabilities within the MOD.

“The programme will future proof the role we have in continuing to provide world class defence against our adversaries whether that’s in the battlespace or the back office. We are driving our culture of digital innovation by teaming up with partners like Microsoft to provide our whole force with development and training opportunities.”

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