Wiley Edge, a provider specializing in training emerging talent and reskilling, has announced a significant partnership with Cisco Networking Academy. This collaboration aims to train graduates in the most current tech skills, equipping them to begin their careers with the necessary expertise. The partnership reflects a strategic move to bridge the skills gap identified in the tech industry, particularly at entry-level positions.

Wiley Edge’s recent ‘Diversity in Tech’ report highlights a concerning skills gap between university education and the requirements of the working world. The report reveals that 45% of businesses find entry-level tech role candidates often lacking in core technical skills. This gap poses a challenge for both graduates seeking employment and companies in need of skilled workers.

In response to this challenge, Wiley Edge plans to integrate Cisco Networking Academy’s real-world, customizable curriculum into several of its training courses. This curriculum is designed to evolve alongside emerging technology trends. Wiley Edge’s expanded offering will now include high-demand skills such as cybersecurity, networking, programming, data science, the Internet of Things, and infrastructure automation.

Wiley Edge adopts the ‘Hire, Train, Deploy’ model within its Alumni programme, focusing on reducing the risks associated with hiring emerging talent and ensuring that graduates can immediately contribute to their teams. This approach also aims to build diverse talent pipelines. Cisco Networking Academy’s training, which emphasizes skills-to-jobs with a focus on engaging underserved and marginalized populations, aligns with this ethos. The partnership aims to enhance career opportunities for underrepresented groups in tech.

Meeting Industry Demands

Approximately 95% of Fortune 500 companies utilize Cisco technologies, indicating the high demand for skills in these areas. The collaboration between Wiley Edge and Cisco Networking Academy is poised to prepare graduates with the skills needed by these major companies, setting them apart in a competitive field.

Dennis Bonilla, Vice President and Dean of the Wiley Edge Academy, commented on the partnership’s benefits: “Our partnership with Cisco Networking Academy helps us provide ‘real world’ training to graduates through a customisable curriculum that evolves with emerging technology. It will help ensure our Alumni are fluent in the latest cybersecurity and tech skills that are essential in today’s market. Our client organisations will benefit from a diverse pipeline of graduate tech talent trained with their business needs in mind, without the risks associated with sourcing and training emerging talent in-house. Wiley Edge’s Alumni add immediate value to the teams they join from day one of their placements, with the vast majority becoming permanent employees at the end of the programme.”

Elizabeth Barr, Head of the Cisco Networking Academy UK & Ireland, also reflected on the partnership’s significance: “Cisco Networking Academy and Wiley Edge are aligned on the importance of opening access to technology education and promoting inclusive workforce development. Through our partnership, more graduates will be trained in Cisco-related skills, which are in high demand due to our trusted position as a leader in the IT network market. With our accreditation, employers can trust Wiley Edge Alumni to be invaluable additions to their teams who will start work equipped with the latest cybersecurity knowledge and skills to enrich and futureproof company practices.”

This partnership marks a crucial step towards bridging the skills gap in the tech industry, particularly for entry-level roles, and signifies a collaborative effort to enhance workforce development in technology.

For more information about Wiley Edge, please visit https://www.wiley.com/edge/