26 May 2020 – For immediate release
ACS, the professional association for Australia’s technology sector, has welcomed the government’s JobMaker plan outlined by the Prime Minister at the National Press Club this afternoon.
Equipping businesses, governments and students with an accurate picture of industry’s skills needs is an essential part of building a 21st century workforce said ACS President, Dr Ian Oppermann.
“The COVID-19 lockdowns have provided challenges to the entire economy and ACS has released several key initiatives supporting a wide range of areas to support the technology sector and our membership.”
These initiatives include cyber security and working from home technology guides, a career hub for ACS members, and a Virtual Tech and Employability Skills half day conference to assist those who are entering the technology workforce.
“Now, as Australia emerges from the COVID-19 lockdown, we are presented with a once-in-a-generation opportunity to position the nation so our businesses and citizens can take advantage of the Industry 4.0 era,” continued Mr Oppermann.
“This was the thinking behind ACS’ announcement last year of an AI centre of excellence based out of our Melbourne Innovation Hub and early stage investment fund.
“However, in order to take advantage of these opportunities, we need a skilled and flexible workforce underpinned by a modern training system, something that has been highlighted by ACS’ annual Digital Pulse report.”
The 2019 Digital Pulse reported three policy priorities for driving the growth of Australia’s digital economy: boosting skills, start-ups and investment, with the highest priority being skills development.
Last year’s report found the nation faced a shortage of 100,000 tech workers by 2024 on current trends while the direct benefit for individuals reskilling to fill these roles could potentially be an income boost of more than $11,000 per year.
2019’s Digital Pulse also noted that while university completions in technology degrees have risen slightly, there was a significant decline of 11,875 VET sector technology subject enrolments since 2016, underscoring the Prime Minister’s call for refreshing the options available through vocational education channels.
Director of Corporate Affairs and Public Policy
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ACS is the professional association for Australia's technology sector. More than 43,000 ACS members work in business, education, government and the community. ACS exists to create the environment and provide the opportunities for members and partners to succeed. ACS strives technology professionals to be recognised as drivers of innovation in our society, relevant across all sectors, and to promote the formulation of effective policies on technology and related matters. Visit www.acs.org.au for more information.