Belfast Telegraph

Friday 19 September 2014

DebateNI home of Northern Ireland politics

Analytics Academy bridges the skills gap – Farry

Stormont Executive press release - Department for Employment and Learning

Employment and Learning Minister, Dr Stephen Farry, today hosted an awards ceremony for graduates from the Deloitte Analytics Training Academy (DATA).

DATA is a Department for Employment and Learning (DEL) initiative involving a nine week intensive training programme targeted at graduates, developed jointly by DEL, Deloitte and Belfast Metropolitan College. It has trained 17 graduates with the skills and accredited qualifications identified by Deloitte for new job opportunities in their Belfast office.

Speaking in the Long Gallery at Parliament Buildings, Minister Farry congratulated the graduates on completing the Academy, and said: “The ICT sector is the driving force of a globally competitive economy, underpinning innovation, competitiveness and long term prosperity. It is imperative that we support this sector locally to enhance the quality of our workforce, maximise employment opportunities and give our businesses a competitive edge in the global marketplace.

“The Academy model has been very successful and is now being offered in a number of areas, including Data Analytics, Software Testing and Cloud Technologies. It is also being further developed to meet employer demands in other sectors. We have a vast wealth of skills and qualifications amongst those who are currently out of work, and the Academy model is an extremely effective way of harnessing those skills, and vital in encouraging economic growth in Northern Ireland.

“The Academy is an excellent example of how my Department can support graduates in finding employment.”

Garry Carpenter, Operations Manager at Deloitte Analytics, Belfast, said: “Analytics is a key growth area for Deloitte in Belfast and we have big plans to develop a team of professionals who are passionate about providing analytical insight to better help our clients with their ever increasing data challenges in this fast changing technological age. We knew the talent existed in Northern Ireland and that we needed an innovative approach to tap into graduates of all disciplines. The Academy has more than exceeded our expectations in regards to the quality of the programme and the calibre of the candidates taking part. It has been a hugely positive experience and Deloitte are very proud to have been associated with the project.”

Dr Jonathan Heggarty, the Head of School, Computing and Electronic Technologies at Belfast Metropolitan College said: “The success of the Data Analytics Training Academy at Belfast Met shows the agility of the further education sector to react to meet the demands of industry. We’re delighted to be working in partnership with the Department and Deloitte who are growing their local workforce to support an international operation whilst providing exciting career opportunities to young graduates.”

The ceremony was attended by the Academy trainees and their guests, along with representatives from Deloitte and Belfast Met.

Notes to editors:

1. See photos from the Department for Employment and Learning in our collection at http://www.flickr.com/niexecutive

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