Jim Armitage: Cracking the code is the way to business success

Outlook A footnote from a meeting with Wonga's chief executive earlier this week. I know, I know: to many readers, Errol Damelin is the epitomy of all that's wrong with British capitalism. But when it comes to tech, the veteran of three different start-up firms knows his stuff.

And he says British schools are badly letting down our kids when it comes to IT training. All the hours spent teaching them how to use Powerpoint, Word and Excel are "totally useless", he says.

Anyone can teach themselves how to use those kinds of programs in their own time.

What our children really need to learn is how to write computer code. It is smart coders who will create and build the next generation of businesses.

Coding really needs proper teaching, and British schools are way behind other countries.

It is, says Mr Damelin "a major deficit in skills for the UK".

What's more, he adds, if taught in the right way, kids really love doing it. Who wouldn't want to be able to say: "There's an app for that. I wrote it!"