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Digital Start Fund - Closed for Applications 23/24

Digital skills can help you land a well-paid career with long-term security. But accessing the training you need to get started is often costly. That’s why the Digital Start Fund has been created, to help people on lower incomes gain skills in data analysis, software development and cyber security. 

For general enquiries, please contact To apply, please contact training providers directly. Details of courses and providers are listed below.

The support you need to thrive in digital

If you are on a lower income, the Digital Start Fund could offer you a grant to help pay for training. A million pounds in total is available through the fund provided by Scottish Government, and managed by Skills Development Scotland. Apply and you could be awarded between £1,000 and £8,000 to cover training in software development and cyber security. This will be paid straight to your training provider. Funding may also be available for travel and childcare costs if you need it.

A foot in the door of a major growth industry

There are thousands of new jobs available in the digital sphere each year. These include jobs requiring specific tech-focused skills – like software development and cyber security – as well as jobs in areas like marketing, HR, data, and finance. Take a look at our Industries and Jobs area to get a sense of just how much is out there.

Boost your earning power

High demand for digital skills often means a high salary for those who fit the bill. In the digital industry, salaries average around £37,500 – well above the national average salary of £28,000.

A training type for everyone

You can access training even if you don't have any digital experience. There are a variety of training lengths and locations available through the fund, all of which will lead to a qualification at SCQF 6 level or above, and will be delivered by accredited, approved training providers (see below).

Are you eligible?

To be eligible to apply, you’ll need to be resident in Scotland and have the right to work in the UK.

You will also have to either:

  • Receive, or be eligible for, Universal Credit or other income-based benefits.


  • Low Income employed and face two or more barriers, such as being an armed forces veteran, having a disability, living in an area with a high unemployment rate, being aged 54 or older, or being homeless (for further information about recognised barriers to work visit here).


  • Currently economically inactive as a result of a COVID-19 employment shock with a household income below the Scottish median.

Please note the courses that are currently available are not open to recent graduates in the last 12 months. 

Training Providers

None currently available.