10X Delivery Plan 2023/24

This month, the Department for the Economy published its 10X Delivery Plan 2023/24. The extensive document comes over two years after the department published its ambitious 10X vision for a decade of innovation and includes various actions and initiatives that will benefit the software industry.   

With 12 action areas and a total of 90 sub-actions to be taken forward in the next year, we present to you as alliance members the areas of significance for the software sector, the programmes the Software Alliance is involved in, and how member companies are having their say.  

The plan’s objectives fall under innovation, inclusive growth, and sustainability. Recognising that innovative growth requires significant work in the area of skills and talent, DfE has agreed 12 actions in this section, several of which we are supporting on.  

Action 4.3 - Develop action plan as part of the delivery of Digital Spine

The Department’s action plan in this area will have two strands, the second of which focuses on advancing digital skills in computer science and software engineering. An Industry Reference Group has been established to take this forward, and we are pleased to announce it will be chaired by Software Alliance Chairperson John Healy, ensuring the voice of the software industry is represented within the Digital Spine project.

We are also encouraged to see several member organisations represented on the Industry Reference Group, with Michael Noble (Allstate), Tanya Matthews (Version 1), Ryan Graham (Texthelp), Andrew Gough (GCD Tech), Mario Paolucci (Kainos) and Ryan Adams (Instil) contributing.

The Department for Education, which also has responsibility for this project, has established a Digital Skills Oversight Group to develop the Digital Spine, which the Software Alliance is actively feeding into.

Also of relevance to our members is the establishment of a Centre for Digital Innovation and Technology (CDIT) to enhance the quality of software development approaches and collaborative college/university teaching and problem-based learning, which DfE, Belfast Met, QUB and Stranmillis College are taking forward. (Action 4.5).

Separately, DfE intends to partner with tech stakeholders, including the Software Alliance, to adapt Northern Ireland Screen’s work experience programme ScreenWorks for wider application, and we are liaising with the department to take this piece forward. (Action 4.11).

Underpinning this work, we are active with DfE and continue to meet regularly and are pleased to see this influence reflected back in the overwhelming focus this plan places on innovation. In particular, our School’s Group member Columb Duffy (Allstate NI) works closely with DfE in this area and our Board member and Deputy Chairperson Tom Gray (Kainos) is involved in the Department’s ongoing research into the technology industries in Northern Ireland. Tom has represented us in the collation of the report on software, which we hope to see published in the coming months.

Read the Department for the Economy’s 10X Delivery Plan 2023/24 here: https://www.economy-ni.gov.uk/publications/10x-delivery-plan-202324

Find out more about the Software Alliance and get involved here: https://sani-website.glueup.com/