More than half of technical vacancies are unfilled, reveals our North East Digital Skills Audit 2021.

In partnership with the Institute of Coding and the UK Tech Cluster Group, we surveyed over 200 individuals and businesses in the North East to learn about the state of digital skills in the region during 2020.

The audit aims to provide valuable data to help us to understand what’s really happening in the region, getting feedback directly from the people that are working in or working towards a digital career.

To summarise, our audit found that whilst the region has shown resilience by continuing to recruit during the pandemic, more than half of those recruiting were unable to fill their vacancies.

We also found that there is a clear lack of skilled job seekers with relevant industry experience (82%). This is huge and highlights that there is a clear failure in the system. Whilst we have seen positive steps towards addressing this gap, including the new Digital T level qualification, more needs to be done.

As addressed in the Queen’s speech on May 11th, we need strong industry/education partnerships at all levels and a clear plan to support the creation of a skilled, experienced talent pipeline.

Another very apparent issue is the significant lack of diversity within digital organisations. More work clearly needs to be done in this area to make sure that our workplaces are accessible and recruitment processes are inclusive.

Let’s collaborate

So, we’re calling on everyone to collaborate and improve the digital pipeline in our region. Let’s provide more opportunities to gain industry work experience, raise better awareness of the businesses that are recruiting on our own doorsteps, and nurture a more accessible and diverse workforce.

If you would like to find out more about the Skills Audit or would like to discuss how you can get involved in driving this change, please contact our Head of Skills: Jill McKinney at

To read the full digital skills audit, please visit this link: