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Tech Council hatches plan to solve Australia’s tech talent shortage

- November 30, 2021 2 MIN READ
Photo: AdobeStock
The Technology Council of Australia (TCA) and the Digital Skills Organisation (DSO) have forged an industry partnership in a bid to help solve the nation’s tech talent shortfall. 

The TCA has forecast that Australia will need one million people in tech jobs by 2025. That means 140,000 more people need to enter tech jobs over the next four years, and with borders closed and migration levels uncertain amid ongoing pandemic disruptions, the organisations want to look closer to home for solutions. 

The collaboration is hoping to raise the profile of the tech sector and its employment possibilities, starting with the launch of the “Digital Employment Forum”. The Forum brings together major tech employers and educators, including CBA, nbn co, Swinburne University and Woolworths, in a bid to transform Australia’s approach to attracting and training tech workers

The forum will focus on four key pillars:

  • Research: produce an innovative data-driven research program that defines and identifies tech employment needs, talent pathways, skills gaps, migration needs across the economy.
  • Strategy: develop a cross-economy digital employment workforce strategy to help align the industry, training providers and government on core industry needs, accounting for key roles and levels of skill and experience. 
  • Training and skills: bring together educators, industry and support providers together to identify skills and training needs and priorities, best practice training lessons, and to identify policy and implementation gaps for tech workforce training and development
  • Employment matching: connect employers with education providers and workers by aggregating tech training options and employer job opportunities and programs.

Atlassian co-founder Scott Farquhar, who’s on the TCA board, said highly paid jobs are available in Australia and “ripe for the taking” if the nation’s workforce is upskilled and reskilled.

“We can train and employ more Australians into high-value tech careers and give our economy a post-pandemic shot in the arm,” he said

“From Bendigo to Bela Vista, Australians everywhere can grow into a digital career that is in high demand and highly paid. If we embrace this opportunity now, Australia will win.” 

DSO chairman Yasmin Allen said Australia is not producing people with these skills at scale.

“It is not simply a technology sector issue, it’s an economy-wide issue. Every Australian company is going through a digital transformation, accelerated through the pandemic,” she said.

“This industry first partnership will build on the pilots DSO is doing and create more employer-led approaches by improving visibility of tech jobs opportunities and pathways into them and improving the responsiveness of the training and migration systems to employment needs.”

Allen said DSO is working with employers to develop a skills-based approach to giving  the digital skills needed for them to be successful.

“There is a significant shortfall between the demand for and supply of digitally skilled workers. DSO is playing a pivotal role helping to link employers, learners and training providers,” she said.