Digital Skills Support for Businesses and Charities

There is a variety of webinars, online skills training and self-help guides available to help with some of the new skills we now need whilst working from home.

New Local Training Opportunities

Free Google Digital Garage Training Opportunities for SMEs and Charities.

The 7 Local Digital Skills Partnerships across England are working together with Google Digital Garage to provide a series of free training opportunities for SMEs and 3rd Sector Organisations in our areas. They will take place every Wednesday at 11am in March. You can find out more and sign up here.

The Google Digital Garage webinars include:

3rd March – Setting up and growing your charity online
10th March – Getting your business visible on Google
17th March – Improve your digital marketing strategy
24th March – Setting up your online shop
31st March – Using Google Analytics


Evolve Digital – Are you a small Family Business who wants support to explore digital technology?

Evolve Digital is designed for leaders of small Family Businesses seeking to explore how digital technology can enhance their business to improve productivity and create a sustainable future. This online programme provides business leaders with the leadership capabilities required to explore the potential that new technologies may bring to their business, to remain competitive and meet the needs of the next generation.

The programme will be delivered online over 3 months and will provide you with the tools to:

  • Create a strategy to future proof your business
  • Prioritise areas where digital technology can transform your business
  • Undertake a project in your own business, to test out new digital ideas and accelerate digital adoption
  • Gain leadership skills and confidence to drive change and create competitive advantage

Register Interest Here or Apply Now


Boost – Lancashire’s Growth Hub for Business

Boost have a range of training available for Businesses of all types – you can browse their full events page to see them all.

BT Skills for Tomorrow

BT and their partners are offering a range of webinars to help SME owners and their employees improve their digital and employability skills through online tools, social media advice and new digital tips and tricks, empowering them with the skills they need today, for tomorrow. View here for full list of webinars.

Google Digital Garage

Google have put together a number of webinars that fall in to three categories: Grow Your Skills, Grow Your Business and Grow Your Career – covering a range of topics, for example: digital marketing and social media strategy. Dates range until the end of April (at present).

The Growing Club, Lancaster – Free webinars to support businesses and their owners

Our partners at The Growing Club in Lancaster have set up ways to continue to support businesses and their owners during this time of uncertainty. All of these options are free. You can also keep updated by following their page @TheGrowingClubNorthwest on Facebook.

Every Thursday lunchtime 12.30 to 2pm – Drop in on Zoom for networking, peer support and accountability. Find out more about these events here.

Lloyds Bank Academy

Alongside the free resources available, Lloyds Bank Academy are hosting some online and interactive sessions where you will hear from experts, pick up key tips and tricks and have time to do some virtual networking.

Lots of webinars are available and recordings of ones that have already taken can be found here: LB Academy Interactive Webinars

Pink Link

Pink Link Business network have introduced a series of on Zoom masterclasses including some that are digitally focused – from How to use Zoom to digital marketing all hosted by women of the network. You can also access previous sessions. You can find out more about what masterclasses are available and more about the Network here.

UpSkill Digital – Free Webinars

Our partners from Upskill Digital  are offering free webinars covering topics such as: Coronavirus and managing remote teams effectively, managing remote teams effectively and embracing the remote working experience. You can find all the full range of new and on demand webinars here.



Toolkits and Insights

Other Tools Available

Google Hangouts Meet and Google Classroom Image result for google hangouts meet

Google is offering free access to advanced features on Hangouts Meet to all G Suite and G Suite for Education customers globally until 1/07/2020. These advanced features include:

  • hosting meetings of up to 250 participants
  • live streaming up to 100,000 viewers
  • and recording and saving to Google Drive

Find out more from Google here.

Microsoft TeamsImage result for microsoft teams

Microsoft Teams are offering a free version of Teams that lifts restrictions on how many users can be part of a team and allows users to schedule video calls, conferences, chat, share files and access 3rd party integrations.

Video training on how to use Microsoft Teams can be accessed here.

Image result for zoom


The free version of Zoom enables video conferencing with unlimited 121 calls, group calls with 40 min limit and chat functions.

Check out Zoom here.                   


Slack is an online tool that helps people work together and collaborate as easily online as they do in person. It’s designed to support the way people naturally work together, making collaborating with people online as easy and efficient as it is face-to-face. To get your head around how it works and what it is, Slack has a range of training materials available including a Slack 101 guide for those new to it and a hints and tips section as well.



Free Courses to Develop Digital and Technical Skills

City and Guilds

City and Guilds are looking to support those who are working with apprenticeships. Find out more about their offer here.

The Catalyst

The Catalyst have a range of step by step guides that you may find useful at present. Catalyst support charity organisations but the guides will be relevant to all. More information can be found here.

Enterprise Nation

Enterprise Nation is a community of small businesses and business advisers that exist to shortcut your route to trusted business support.  Whether you’re starting or growing a business, they have the resources to help you. You can view there full range of digital skills support here.


FutureLearn is a digital education platform jointly owned by The Open University and SEEK Ltd, where you can find content from The Open University and over 140 education partners. The content is made available free of charge to an individual learner. Some of the most relevant training includes:

Learn My Way

Learn My Way from The Good Things Foundation has courses on Google, Outlook, Gmail, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and productivity tools.


If you are new to working remotely or just looking for tips, LinkedIn has put out a free learning path of 16 online courses including: best practice for working remotely, time management, productivity tips, executive presence on video calls, building resilience and leading at a distance.

Lloyds Academy

The Lloyds Academy has wide array of training available for businesses to “unlock the business benefits of digital”.  Categories of training include:

  • Managing finances
  • Understanding your customers
  • Improving your website
  • Managing your business online
  • Using social media
  • Staying safe and secure

Microsoft Teams

Video training on Microsoft Teams available here.

OpenLearn by The Open University

OpenLearn is a free learning platform, delivered by The Open University as part of its Royal Charter commitment to support the well-being of the community. Here you will find almost 1,000 free courses, topical and interactive content, videos and online games. Some of the most relevant today are:

Other training available

Don’t forget the wide range of free digital skills you can find collated on the Lancashire Digital Skills Partnership webpage.