FDM Group held an event today to mark Ada Lovelace Day and to showcase its Getting Back to Business returnship programme.

The company’s programme is aimed at women who want to return to careers in IT and business.Ada Lovelace Day

The graduate recruitment firm held a panel event at it London offices, near London Bridge. The event included speakers Vanessa Valley, Founder and Managing Director of WeAreTheCity, Miranda Brawn,  Director at Daiwa Capital and Founder of Color in Tech and Jacqueline De Rojas, Executive Vice President of Sage and President of techUK.

At the event Sheila Flavell, Chief Operating Officer at FDM Group (pictured), said: “Going back into the workplace after a career break can be daunting so we’ve developed our Getting Back to Business programme to support women and make their return easier, giving them the skills and confidence to restart their careers. We are passionate about this.

“By reskilling talented people in IT and business specialties and helping them achieve their ambitions we are also providing employers with talented people to fill their skills needs for the future.”

The Getting Back to Business Programme provides women with seven weeks of fully funded training followed by full time employment with employers drawn from the FDM Group’s client base. The programme stems from FDM Group’s Women in IT initiative, design to encourage more women to join the IT industry which is currently lacking in females.

Flavell added: “This situation simply is not sustainable. There are over 2.4 million women* who would like to work who are currently out of work; this is a vast talent pool that could potentially help fill the digital skills gap. There is a lot we need to do to make this happen, including helping businesses understand the many benefits that recruiting a workforce which more accurately reflects society brings.”

A pilot for the returnship took place in 2015, and the first UK course is currently under way with 12 women taking part, several of them have already been placed with employers in a variety of sectors including the public sector, business and finance sectors.

You can find out more about the FDM Group returnship programme here. FDM Group’s next Back to Business programme starts in 2017.