May 21, 2021 at 4:57 PM by Chloe Holmes
A group of industry organizations from the North East have partnered with the North of Tyne Combined Authority to help businesses and organizations increase productivity, efficiency and resilience by embracing digital technology.
Delivered by Digital Catapult North East Tees Valley, Generator, Voluntary Organizations Network North East (VONNE) and Steam Digital, the new £ 2million Digital Pathfinders program will remove barriers to digital adoption by providing fully funded support to over 500 businesses and charities and organizations in North Tyne over the next three years.
The scheme was made possible with funding from the North of Tyne Combined Authority’s £ 10million Digital Growth and Innovation Program and the National Digital Catapult.
“The program comes at an opportune time because we have seen a real market failure in the area of digital transformation,” comments Adam Hill, head of digital adoption at Digital Catapult NETV. “The need to build economic resilience through digital technology has been clearly evident in recent months, but the risk of investing in digital remains significant for many organizations in the region.
“With the wide array of digital tools available in the market, it can be difficult to understand which ones to work with to be successful in the organization.
“Plus, even when a business knows it needs to invest in digital, it can be difficult to find the right supplier. We know the Northeast is home to a network of talented tech SMEs, but if you are not part of the tech network it can be difficult to find out more about them.
“Through Digital Pathfinders, we will help organizations across all industries find their digital path to success and collaborate with the region’s talented tech sector. Whether it’s a volunteer organization looking to tackle cybersecurity, a retailer exploring new ways to sell online, or a manufacturer looking to improve their productivity, we can help. “
Digital Pathfinders will provide support to businesses, charities and SMEs through a range of workshops, events and one-on-one support from a team of experts. The program is officially launched at the launch event on June 15. The event will feature a panel of local businesses and community leaders who will share lessons from their digital transformation journeys.
Cllr Nick Forbes, Cabinet Member for Business Competitiveness at North of Tyne Combined Authority, said: “Covid-19 has demonstrated the critical importance of agile and digitally enabled business models. We are working with the regional tech sector to invest in a future that sustains, revives and grows north of Tyne.
There is untapped potential for digital to help successful SMEs innovate, improve efficiency and increase profitability in the post-Covid economy.
Our Digital Pathfinders program – offered in partnership – provides free, independent advice to VCS companies and organizations. Together, we have a bold ambition to harness the benefits of digital technology across our economy. “