Manchester Digital has announced that its 2024 annual Digital Skills Festival will take place from Monday 5 to Friday 9 February 2024.

The week-long event which takes place at various venues across the city centre, will bring together leading tech businesses, education providers, tech professionals and future tech talent for a programme of events and discussions which aim to strengthen Manchester’s digital and tech skills ecosystem.

Katie Gallagher, managing director of Manchester Digital, said:With an upcoming general election on the horizon for next year, it is vitally important that the region’s tech industry has very clear asks of the next government and leads the conversation around our region’s place in the rapidly-developing tech industry.

“On top of this, emerging tech such as AI, is already changing the way we work and will affect the skillsets we look for in the tech industry, so this will be a key topic of discussion.

“Our Digital Skills Festival, which has run for more than a decade, celebrates our fast-moving, thriving and innovative tech ecosystem, with a Conference Day, Talent Day and much more.”

The main Conference Day, which will take place on Monday 5 February, will see keynote speeches around the future of the tech industry, plus emerging technology such as generative AI, which is already shaping the future of tech careers.

On Tuesday 6 February, the festival will host Discover Digital Apprenticeships Day, which coincides with National Apprenticeship Week, offering information around apprenticeship pathways into the tech industry, as well as advice for organisations interested in hosting apprenticeships.

In 2024, Talent Day, which is the largest tech careers fair in the North, will take place at the prestigious Bridgewater Hall on Wednesday 7 February. Around 2000 students, graduates and career changers will meet 50 of the region’s top tech employers to find out about current job opportunities.

New for 2024 is Digital Her Day on Thursday 8 February, which will shine a spotlight on women working in digital and technology roles across the city-region. The event will feature talks, workshops, networking events and activities which will empower women to progress their tech careers and address gender imbalance in the industry.

Alison Ross MBE, chair of Manchester Digital and chief people and operations director at AutoTrader, said:We’re delighted to be supporting the Digital Skills Festival again this year as headline sponsor.

“As chair of the Manchester Digital board, we continue to support the tech industry and everything it has to offer through this established and well-respected festival.

“We’ve seen huge innovation and developments within emerging tech over the past 12 months, so we’re looking forward to bringing together discussions around the future of the tech industry with showcasing opportunities around early careers and the tech talent pipeline and much more.”

The 2024 Digital Skills Festival is supported by headline sponsor AutoTrader. Manchester City Council returns as strategic partner and Bruntwood returns as a venue sponsor. Further sponsors will be announced over the coming weeks.

Learn more about the Manchester Digital Skills Festival and how your Greater Manchester business can get involved here.