Free digital support for SMEs

As part of the West of England Combined Authority’s Workforce for the Future programme, UWE Bristol has launched ‘Digital Skills: Workforce for the Future’, offering free support to SMEs looking to improve business productivity and sustainability by enhancing the digital skills and capabilities of their workforce.

Working with the Combined Authority’s Growth Hub (the West of England Combined Authority’s dedicated business support service), the University will deliver this support to SMEs from any industry that has a business presence in the West of England.


SMEs are encouraged to register their interest in the scheme, and they will then be contacted by expert advisers who visit their business to ascertain what digital skills they might benefit from. During their assessment, the advisers analyse business, operational and digital needs and compile a report and action plan based on this assessment. They may also assess employees to identify any digital skills gaps.

Based on their assessment in these areas, they then develop a structured learning plan catered to the business’s needs. This can include short, online courses for staff and even in-depth leadership programmes, as well as accredited learning and training on digital futureproofing. Throughout the process, SMEs have access to targeted skills libraries, a digital talent recruitment pool and a digital business network.

Registered SMEs will also be able to apply for digital consultant support to enable significant digital skills development. These consultants will work closely with the SME and its employees to enhance operations, support technology adoption, or workforce training and upskilling. Consultant support can be applied for between 2-12 weeks in length, dependant on the needs identified.

The scheme runs until early 2023.


• Digital marketing, website design, app design & creation
• Digital disruption, leadership & change
• Identifying emerging technologies and benefits to your business
• Cyber Security
• AI & Machine Learning
• Robotics & Smart Factories
• Cloud computing
• Data management, CRM systems & analytics
• Coding & programming

As part of the Workforce for the Future programme, you will also have access to the full breadth of regional business support brought together and accessed via the West of England Growth Hub.


Register your interest here and a member of the team will call you back.


Digital Skills: Workforce for the Future programme.

Growth Hub: Workforce for the Future programme