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</Skills Bootcamps: what are they and are they right for me?>

Published on 2 September 2022 by Clea Wood

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How and why Skills Bootcamps began

Skills Bootcamps are part of a government initiative introduced to provide targeted skills training, to help close national skills gaps which were intensified following the pandemic. One particular skills gap highlighted is in digital skills which is estimated to cost the UK economy as much as £63 billion a year in potential GDP.

Over eighty percent of all jobs in the UK currently advertised require digital skills, however employers are saying the lack of digital skills in candidates and employees is one of the key factors holding back their growth. This clearly shows the dire need for investment in digital skills for the UK’s workforce.

Person working on computer at home

What are Skills Bootcamps?

Skills Bootcamps are flexible courses of up to 16 weeks that give people the opportunity to build up sector-specific skills and fast-track to an interview with a local employer. They’ve been developed as part of the Government’s Lifetime Skills Guarantee, helping everyone gain skills for life.

They are designed for people who want to upskill quickly to work in specific tech-driven sectors (e.g. construction or web development) or for those who want to gain in-demand digital skills applicable to multiple areas (e.g. data science).

What are the benefits of doing a Skills Bootcamp?

They allow you to gain the skills employers need within 16 weeks or less, many of them are flexible and offer remote learning and some even offer evening classes. Unlike many courses and even degrees, you’re guaranteed an interview at the end of the course. They also focus on soft skills which employers look for such as CV writing and time management to help boost your employability.

Is a Skills Bootcamp right for me?

If you’re aged 19 and over and looking to change sectors or progress in your current industry, a Skills Bootcamp could be your next step to that dream job. It could also be perfect for you if you’re recently unemployed (within the last 12 months) and looking to get back into work.

Why should I do a Skills Bootcamp rather than another online course or even a degree?

This all comes down to preference of learning style and what your goals are. Skills Bootcamps are a fantastic way to upskill in a short amount of time and they’re a great option for those who need flexible and remote learning options.

As they are 16 weeks or less, they not designed to cover everything in depth like a 3-year degree is able to. Unlike other courses there’s an emphasis on improving job prospects and helping individuals into a new role or promotion.

Do I have to pay to do a Skills Bootcamp?

For individuals who are eligible, the courses are completely free. If employers wish to upskill their workforce, then they have to contribute 30% of the cost. The costs vary per bootcamp provider, so your employer will need to contact them directly to find out the exact cost.

For IoC Skills Bootcamps, you can find out all the details about costs and check if you’re eligible here.

The IoC and Skills Bootcamps

The IoC responded to the UK’s digital skills gap by working with our university partners to connect employers and learners through a series of nationwide Skills Bootcamps that give people the digital skills needed to take the first step into a tech career.

You can view our full list of Skills Bootcamps here. You can also sign up to our newsletter so you’re notified when new Skills Bootcamps are launched.

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