On the day that the Prime Minster revealed a new industrial strategy for the UK, observers have called for better use of technology.

UK governments have not been big fans of industrials strategies, not for a very long time. But this morning, things feel different. Mrs May wants the UK government is to play a more active role. The focus will be on broadband, transport and energy.

“For many years, we have not been as good on technical education as our competitors," said the Business Secretary, Greg Clark talking to the BBC.

And on this very day, Teesside University has unveiled a five-point economic growth plan for “superior digital capability” in the Tees Valley. The plan does rather chime with the May strategy, maybe however, it has a little more flesh on it compared to the governments somewhat bony plan, and see how tech firms could benefit.

The Teesside University plan comes with five elements:

  • Creating a new generation of digital businesses – nurturing digital start-ups and providing hubs where they can grow.
  • Supporting the growth of businesses through digital – unlocking the growth potential of traditional businesses through digital innovation.
  • Transforming sectors with digital knowledge – providing businesses with research and expertise to improve their competitiveness.
  • Preparing businesses for Industry 4.0 – helping businesses get ready for the influence of automation and digital supply chains.
  • Growing digital skills and talent – giving people and businesses the digital know-how they need for the future.
For entrepreneurs, and small businesses, this feels like quite an opportunity.

Meanwhile, Rich Fenton, UK&I Systems Engineering Manager, Nimble Storage, said that the new industrial strategy is another example of where the government is using technology and better digital infrastructure to address the low UK labour productivity. But added: “But beyond remediating infrastructure on a national scale, true change will only be achieved if businesses start taking a smarter approach to increasing productivity in their own firm. For those companies that increasingly rely on digital technologies, it is important that they look into their own infrastructure to reduce the time currently wasted by employees on software delays. With the typical employee experiencing an average of four software-caused delays per work day, and each of these lasting about seven seconds, the cost of this time to the British economy amounts to £744,235,520 every year. By taking simple steps to reduce the app-delivery gap in their own infrastructure, businesses can make a concerted effort to improve productivity in their company and the wider economy.”