Academy supports the next generation of digital talent

Hundreds of people will have their careers in the digital sector fast-tracked thanks to the expansion of the Answer Academy.

Answer is a digital and IT consultancy that employs over 100 people in Leeds. Over the last six years, the company has seen its Academy train people with digital skills in software development, integration, test automation and project management.

From January the initiative now fast tracks careers in service design and business analysis. Over half of the staff at Answer Digital are alumni of its Academy, which was created to nurture the next generation of talent for the company.

Answer has seen revenues leap 60% in the last financial year and has announced plans to recruit over 100 new roles in the next two years.

The company works extensively with the NHS on national programs, including Covid response and in partnership with the London Medical Imaging and AI Centre for Value-Based Healthcare to pave the way for AI-enabled hospitals and the future of patient care. This project will see new Artificial Intelligence (AI) platforms built and used to support clinicians with faster diagnosis and treatments, personalised therapies, and effective screening across a range of conditions and procedures.

Answer also works across the financial services sector and has supported companies ranging from Bank North to RPMI, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Railways Pension Trustee Company Limited (RPTCL).  

Commenting on the Academy, Gary Parlett, founder and managing director of Answer, said: “It’s essential that we attract and retain the next generation of digital talent. We believe that our Academy and supportive approach to career development sets us apart and is a result of our employee-ownership model, which puts our people at the centre of everything we do.”

Everyone at Answer is part of the Career Ladders initiative, which helps people set their own goals for career development against transparent criteria. Career Guides are available for regular check-ins and to help create opportunities that build experience in the required areas.

Tabitha Fogarty, a recent graduate of the Answer Academy, said: “At Answer, I’ve found a culture that is friendly and supportive, and people always have time to help you. I was worried about starting my career in lockdown, and my first job didn’t do much to allay my fears. Building a career is about growing relationships and learning, and you need a company where everyone supports each other to move forward. I’ve found that at Answer.”

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