ADD2297 Funding for Digital Talent Programme Careers Fair – Feb 2019

Type of decision: 
Assistant Director's decision
Date signed: 
03 December 2018
Decision by: 
Michelle Cuomo-Boorer, Assistant Director of Skills and Employment

Executive summary

This decision form asks for approval of expenditure on a digital careers fair, as part of the Mayor’s Digital Talent Programme. The event will take place in the London Living Room during February half term 2018, and will be aimed at young people aged 16-24. This event would address the programme aim to support 2,000 young Londoners to access careers guidance and inspirational events for digital sector roles.

The expenditure will be funded from the budget allocated for marketing activities under Strand 6 of the programme, agreed by MD2040.

It is proposed that the GLA procures a specialist events management company to deliver the event.


That the Assistant Director of Skills and Employment approves:

Expenditure of up to £20,000 to deliver a digital skills careers fair, including engaging a specialist events management company following a procurement process run by the Digital Talent team.

Part 1: Non-confidential facts and advice

Introduction and background

Under MD2040 the Mayor approved a £7m investment to fund the Digital Talent programme, a multi-stranded programme that aims to plug the growing digital skills shortage in London’s labour market with diverse ‘homegrown’ talent. The programme will do this by funding new industry-led vocational training in digital, technology and creative occupations.

The aims of the Digital Talent Pipeline programme are:

• To make an immediate impact on young Londoners of working age who want a job that requires digital skills.
• Increase the number of young women and young people from Black Asian Minority Ethic (BAME) backgrounds and disadvantaged backgrounds who are currently underrepresented in digitally-skilled occupations.
• Stimulate long-term collaboration between FE colleges, skills providers, Higher Education Institutions, secondary schools and employers of all sizes.
• Ensure that employers have an improved pool of talent they can recruit from, helping to meet their growth aspirations that are currently hampered by skills shortages.

MD2040 allocated £0.300m revenue to invest in a coordination, information and marketing campaign to direct young Londoners to careers advice and digital learning opportunities. It is proposed that £20,000 of this allocation is allocated to deliver a careers fair to highlight a range of careers pathways within the digital sector, showcase inspiring role models and available employment and training opportunities. This expenditure will include engaging an events company to programme and manage the event, as well as internal GLA costs for catering, and print production for event collateral.

Objectives and expected outcomes

The objective is to deliver an effective and inspiring careers event for young Londoners aged 16-24 that inspire them to pursue careers in the digital sector.

The expected outputs and outcomes of the project include:

• Inspiring over 150 young Londoners, particularly young women and Londoners from BAME and disadvantaged backgrounds to join the digital workforce
• Promote the Mayor’s Digital Talent programme and showcase the Mayor’s commitment to address the digital skills gap and tackle the lack of diversity in this sector.
• Highlight the successes of the Digital Talent Programme in its first year.

Equality comments

London’s economy is becoming increasingly digital and requires a workforce with a new set of skills. The Mayor’s Digital Talent programme will inspire and prepare more young Londoners (16 – 24 years old) for the digitally-skilled occupations needed by all sectors of the economy. Critically, it will have a strong focus on addressing the under-representation of women and BAME Londoners in the tech workforce and will develop ‘homegrown’ talent, tackling high rates of youth unemployment in London.

The Mayor is committed to turning around the under representation of women in the digital work force and the development of a tech talent pipeline to support London’s digital economy. This event will be a key part of a wider marketing campaign that will engage and inspire under-represented groups to develop their digital skills and find employment in digitally-skilled occupations.

Other considerations

(a) Key risks and issues

Key risks associated with this proposal are:

• Lack of capacity within Digital Talent Team to deliver the event. Mitigation: Engaging an events management company to deliver the event, following a competitive procurement exercise to ensure this is managed to a professional standard.
• The event fails to reach the target groups or effectively address project priorities. Mitigation: The evaluation criteria for proposals will include assessing organisations’ track record in working with the target groups and delivering successful careers events.

(b) Links to Mayoral strategies and priorities

The Digital Talent Programme fits within the Skills for Londoners strategy; improving digital skills provision is identified as a key mayoral priority.

This programme also aligns with the Smarter London Together roadmap, which sets out the Mayor’s plan to make London into the smartest city in the world, including a commitment to increasing diversity in the tech sector.

Financial comments

The total cost of up to £20,000 for this project will be funded from the 2018/19 Digital Talent Programme budget, held within the Skills and Employment Unit and approved by MD2040.

Activity table



Procurement of contract [for externally delivered projects]

ITQ published w/c  19th Nov

Delivery Start Date [for project proposals]

Supplier in contract by w/c 10th Dec


19th Feb 2019

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