Scotland’s national digital skills academy has trained up more than 800 people in software development and data analytics in four years.

CodeClan, which is helping to fill the 13,000 annual tech-related job opportunities each year in Scotland, celebrated its fourth anniversary this week.

The majority of those graduates are now working in technical roles with over 250 employer partners – from large corporates, major financial institutions, government departments, through to the country’s startup scene. Founded in 2015, the not-for-profit now has campuses in Edinburgh, Glasgow and Inverness.

CodeClan CEO Melinda Matthews Clarkson said: “How successfully we advance digital skills will be key to how Scotland competes and prospers in the 21st century. Our links to Scottish industry through our employer network – commercial and public sector organisations who hire our talented graduates – are crucial not only to our own success but, more importantly, to the future success of Scotland’s economy.” 

“Commentators agree that we don’t know what more than 50 per cent of our jobs will look like in the future, such is the pace of technological change.  This means we need to be ready to adapt to tech trends in areas like data science and machine learning.

“Soft skills are also essential, regardless of how technical a role. The pace of change in organisations today demands skills and attributes like communication, ability to learn, flexibility and a growth mindset. We put considerable effort into instilling these in our students from day one. Change can be challenging, so a focus on wellness is crucial. Wellness is something that CodeClan prioritises and we hope that our graduates will benefit from this for the rest of their careers.”

Scotland’s Minister for Public Finance and the Digital Economy, Kate Forbes, MSP, said: “As Scotland’s digital economy has grown, so too has the demand for digital skills. CodeClan has helped people reskill, retrain and future-proof their careers and its success is a great achievement.  CodeClan has gone from strength to strength and with investment and backing from the Scottish Government, I am delighted that they have grown to being a self-funding model.”

CodeClan’s courses include the multi award-winning Professional Software Development (PSD) programme, which trains people from all backgrounds in software development, and a new Data Analytics course which offers immersive training to assist transition to data-focused business careers.

CodeClan also created a Full-Stack Web Development course specifically for it’s Highlands academy and tailored to businesses in that region. In addition, the organisation offers a growing range of short and bespoke courses, which enable companies to future-proof their workforce with new in-demand digital skills. The PSD course is fully-accredited by the Scottish Qualification Authority (SQA) and has twice won Best Training Programme at the Digital Technology Awards in 2017 and 2018.
Operating highlights in 2019 for CodeClan have included the opening of the Highlands Campus in Inverness in April, a strategic partnership with technology recruitment specialist Eden Scott to support a career pipeline for CodeClan graduates after 18 months in a job.
2019 also saw significant growth of CodeClan’s Client Xperience program, which gives students the opportunity to work on projects with real third-sector clients and benefits charities, students and instructors.

Melinda Matthews Clarkson said: “It’s testament to the whole team, our graduates and our employer partners that we look ahead with even greater optimism on the occasion of our 4th anniversary. Our people, our graduates and our employer partners combine to form a virtuous circle that makes CodeClan work and we’re excited to be delivering real impact on the Scottish digital scene.”