Applications open for Flexible AI Upskilling fund pilot scheme for PBS sector businesses

The Department for Science, Innovation and Technology (DSIT) has announced a ground-breaking £7.4 million pilot scheme aimed at subsidising the cost of AI skills training for small and medium-sized enterprises within the Professional Business Services sector.

The Flexible AI Upskilling fund seeks to bolster AI adoption and productivity among SMEs, with £6.4 million available in grant funding.

Eligible businesses can apply for funding to cover up to 50% of the costs associated with AI skills training. This includes developing, deploying, or using AI within their operations.

The scheme aims to stimulate employer investment in AI training, address AI skills gaps limiting AI adoption, and measure the impact of AI upskilling on business productivity and outcomes.

To be eligible, businesses must be registered and operating in the UK, employ between 1-249 employees, be in existence for at least one year, and operate in the PBS sector as defined by specific SIC codes.

Funding is structured based on business size, with micro businesses (up to 10 employees) eligible for up to £2,500, small businesses (up to 50 employees) eligible for up to £5,000, and medium businesses (up to 250 employees) eligible for up to £10,000.

Applications must be submitted by 23:59 on August 18, 2024. Training must be completed, and invoices submitted by February 2025. Funding may be allocated through a Randomised Controlled Trial (RCT) to ensure robust evaluation. Find out more by clicking here.