Firms merge to fill IT skills gap — with gender parity

TWO CENTRAL European ed-tech companies are merging to create a giant digital skilling and sourcing powerhouse.

Codecool and Software Development Academy (SDA) have a presence in Poland, Hungary, Romania, Austria, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Estonia, and Albania, and will train up to 20,000 people annually and work with 400 global and local brands from the Central European region.

Key partners include Accenture, Microsoft, Motorola, Morgan Stanley, Ericsson and Vodafone. With 300 employees, 17 digital reskilling pathways and a network of 1,600 mentors, the merged company offers its services to individuals, companies and governments. Two reskilling programmes are under way, with 10,000 ICT specialists in Albania and 600 engineers in Hungary. The merged company will also continue to encourage and support women in ICT through different programmes.

“There is a global battle for digital talent, especially coders and programmers,” says SDA chief executive Michał Mysiak, who will lead the merged ed-tech company.

There is a global need for digital skills and the company says it can help the EU and the UK to upskill workers and fill recruitment gaps, and claims a 50 percent growth in enrolments.

The EU is struggling with a shortage of 1.8 million ICT that meet skills and education criteria. In the UK, tech job opportunities have hit a 10-year high.

An important goal under the European Commission’s Digital Decade programme is to employ 20 million ICT specialists by 2030 — with an equal proportion of men and women.

To reach this objective, €161bn will be allocated to innovation and digitalisation of EU markets, according to the European recovery plan.