Interview with Beckie Taylor, Co-Founder of Tech Returners

Tech Returners is a positive and empowering organisation. We provide skilled tech professionals returning to the industry accessible opportunities to refresh their skills. Through a range of programmes, resources and development tools we help reignite individuals careers – back to and through technology.

Our organisation is committed to removing the barriers returners face after career breaks. We tackle the digital skills shortage by empowering skilled people back into technology careers and providing continuous support on their journeys through technology and into leadership.



How did you come up with the idea for the company?


Despite having spent years in high growth tech businesses as the only female leader in the room, I was unprepared for the impact taking a career break – in my case maternity leave after the birth of my son Ethan, would go on to have on my career,

Technology is such a fast-moving, high growth industry and the confidence I lost during my career break was unexpected. I discovered I wasn’t alone and through meeting with like-minded women I went on to co-found Women in Technology North to provide women just like me with opportunities to network and develop confidence but it wasn’t enough. Along with my Co-Founder James Heggs, I realised that there was a gap in the market and whilst the younger generation was being encouraged into tech, that ‘returners’ particularly women were a group facing significant barriers to resuming their careers in technology – and in 2017 Tech Returners was born.

I am passionate about removing these barriers through the work we do at Tech Returners, the talent is out there and we simply need to provide accessible routes back into technology and to work with businesses to encourage different thinking.



What advice would you give to other aspiring entrepreneurs?


It’s cliche but ‘just go for it’ if you are truly passionate about something then that’s the best possible place to be if you’re planning to start a business focused on that same passion and be prepared to work hard, really hard!

Running your own business is incredibly rewarding but it can be frustrating and you are always, always learning and that’s something it’s really important to remember – especially in those moments where you feel out of your depth. Surround yourself with great people, people who lift you up and support you but also people who will tell you the truth and give a guiding hand when you need it, and finally as one of my favourites quotes says “Never, Never, Never Give Up!”


What can we hope to see from Tech Returners in the future?


Since 2017 we’ve been enabled 55 careers back into technology, 48 of those were women and we have no plans to stop anytime soon! We’re a Manchester-based business but in September 2020 we launched the latest cohort of our Your Return To Tech programme in London which is currently underway. 16 more returners will take the journey on a Manchester cohort starting October 2020 whilst a further London cohort is planned for early 2021 – next stop – the world!

We want to make an impact on people’s lives, not just from a returner’s perspective but from a company perspective. These people come into our programmes with so much passion and this can bring so much benefit to the organisations they work with. Companies need to better understand this and having that impact on a global scale is a real ambition for us.


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