Returners Hub

Returners programmes offer a supported bridge back to work for people who have taken a career break. Providing ways for people to ease back into work after a career break is a vital way to make sure we do not lose out on their talent and experience. The techUK returners hub was created as a one-stop-shop for people looking to return to a career in digital. The hub signposts to companies open to applications, free resources and training providers.

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Why returners programmes are good for business

In a fast-changing and innovative sector like tech, where new technologies are transforming work practices every day, the prospect of returning to work can be daunting. Returners programmes shift workplace perceptions surrounding people's right to return to work and challenge the unconscious stigma around career breaks.

techUK members dedicated returner programmes

This page features dedicated tech returners programme from techUK's member companies. Formal schemes in the rapidly changing tech sector are designed to support individuals as they transition back into the workplace after a career break, providing the training needed to update technical skills and business awareness, and sometimes offering additional benefits.

Free resources for returners

techUK signposts to a range of free courses, mentorship opportunities, and re-skilling initiatives for those looking to re-enter the tech sector. These organisations are dedicated to providing free opportunities to returners after a career break.

Training providers

This section is for tech companies who are ready to embark on a returners journeys. These dedicated organisations will help you create a bespoke returners programme for your organisation, and get you on the right track to attract, retrain and progress the best talent.


techUK Returners Hub mentioned by former Minister for Women & Equalities

Former Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport and Minister for Women & Equalities, Baroness Morgan of Cotes, talks about how returners programmes must be a part of a plan to protect women from being disadvantaged by a post-pandemic recession.

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Returner experiences

Since launching our returners site in March 2017, techUK has been encouraging our members support individuals returning to work after a prolonged period of absence by providing advice and sharing best practice. Read stories of how people have returned to work successfully.

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Toolkit for returners: helping you back to work

Advice from the Government Equalities Office. Whether you’re just starting to think about getting back into work, or you’re part-way through the journey back and looking for some extra advice and support, this Toolkit can help. It’s been designed as a roadmap that takes you through every stage of the return-to-work process, with a wide range of information, ideas and actions.

Women’s Business Council: a toolkit for employers

The toolkit is based on best practice guidance developed by Timewise and Women Returners for the Government Equalities Office and is designed for businesses wishing to develop returner programmes of their own. This toolkit sets out the characteristics of a successful programme, clear guidelines on how to attract and recruit candidates, how to support returners, and case studies.

The value of returners programmes cannot be understated. They offer access to a largely untapped pool of talent that conventional recruitment methods often miss. We all benefit when we offer alternative routes and pathways for people who are looking to get back into the workforce, and break down the barriers to returning to fulfilling tech careers. It's great to see so many techUK members leading this.

Antony Walker, Deputy CEO


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Nimmi Patel

Nimmi Patel

Policy Manager, Skills, Talent and Diversity, techUK

Nimmi Patel is the Policy Manager for Skills, Talent and Diversity at techUK.

She works on all things skills policy, focusing on upskilling and retrain. She is committed to embedding diversity in the UK tech pipeline from classroom to boardroom working with partners such as the Tech Talent Charter and the WISE Campaign. Nimmi also leads techUK’s immigration work, collaborating with techUK members and stakeholders to create an environment that attracts the best talent to the UK.

Prior to joining the team, she worked for the UK Labour Party and New Zealand Labour Party and holds a BA in Politics, Philosophy and Economics from the University of Manchester and is currently studying MA Strategic Communications at King’s College London.

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Antony Walker

Antony Walker

Deputy CEO, techUK

Antony Walker is deputy CEO of techUK,  which he played a lead role in launching in November 2013.

Antony is a member of the senior leadership team and has overall responsibility for techUK’s policy work. Prior to his appointment in July 2012 Antony was chief executive of the Broadband Stakeholder Group (BSG), the UK’s independent advisory group on broadband policy. Antony was closely involved in the development of broadband policy development in the UK since the BSG was established in 2001 and authored several major reports to government. He also led the development of the UK’s world leading Open Internet Code of Practice that addresses the issue of net neutrality in the UK. Prior to setting up the BSG, Antony spent six years working in Brussels for the American Chamber of Commerce following and writing about telecoms issues and as a consultant working on EU social affairs and environmental issues. Antony is a graduate of Aberdeen University and KU Leuven and is also a Policy Fellow Alumni of the Centre for Science and Policy at Cambridge University.

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