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ACS Week In Review: 5 July 2013

Friday, 05 Jul 2013

The last week has again been a busy one for those of us in ICT, with the end of the financial year taking place along with the swearing in of a new Minister for Communications, Broadband and the Digital Economy, a new Minister Assisting the Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy and a new Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy. The ACS warmly welcomes Ministers Anthony Albanese and Kate Lundy as well as Parliamentary Secretary Ed Husic to their new roles.

You may also have seen some commentary around 457 Visas and the ACS following a report in The Australian and in some online forums. The ACS does not advocate for or against 457 Visas. We have consistently maintained that the key issues facing the ICT profession include older workers not being able to find employment, women facing barriers to training, a very weak training culture in the industry altogether, declining numbers of ICT students and large graduate employers offshoring ICT roles. These should be the key focus of any discussion around ICT skilled migration.

As a member driven, volunteer supported, Professional Association with almost 50 years history we exist to support our members and promote the ICT profession. In everything we do, our goal is to help our members be the best they can be.

We are not claiming to be perfect, and we know there are things we can do better. We always aim high but sometimes achieve mixed results. Despite this, we will continue to work every day to support, educate, engage, promote and represent our members and the ICT profession to ensure that our members are recognised as exactly what they are – skilled professionals in the most important industry in the country.

ACS Congratulates Victorian Government on launch of eServices Register

The Australian Computer Society (ACS) congratulates the Victorian Government, and in particular, the Minister for Technology, The Hon Gordon Rich-Phillips, on the launch of the Victorian State Government’s eServices Register.

Mr Rich-Phillips said the new eServices Register will replace the eServices Panel to enhance greater market competition and increase innovation and productivity through more efficient processes. The eServices Register is designed to reduce barriers to entry for organisations seeking to win government contracts and is mandated for use by all government departments and agencies.

The ACS likewise applauds the direction given by Grantly Mailes, Victorian Government Chief Technology Advocate, also speaking at the launch, who asked all Victorian Government CIOs to consider including at least one SME or other suitably qualified but low-profile organisation in any future shortlist of competitors. This direction, in conjunction with VIPP, should result in a greater allocation of work given to Victorian ICT contractors and similar professionals. The ACS, as the leading Australian organisation representing ICT professionals, considers that this measure will directly result in the growth of Victorian companies employing ICT professionals.

Ian Dennis, Chairman of ACS Victoria, said “This is a well thought out approach to some of the restrictive practices that have diminished the quality of ICT Government purchasing. The Government still, however, needs to more effectively address the issue of its continued practice of not requiring that ICT project managers and project directors be qualified and certified in the ICT discipline"

IT spending stops growing

Total worldwide spending on IT will total US $3.7 trillion this year, a miniscule 2% increase from last year.

Given population growth and inflation, that means IT spend is not growing at all. But at least it is not falling. The figures are from industry watchers Gartner, in its quarterly worldwide IT spending forecast update.

In this latest forecast, expected growth for 2013 has been revised downwards from 4.1 % to 2%. In Australia, total IT spending is forecast to reach $75.3 billion in 2013, up 2.9% over 2012. This figure is made up of:

· IT services: $28.7 billion

· Telecommunications services (fixed, mobile and data): $26.7 billion

· Devices (mobile phones, PCs, printers): $10.7 billion

· Software: $6.9 billion

· Data centre systems (including servers, storage, network equipment): $2.3 billion 

Gartner’s Worldwide IT Spending Forecast tracks expenditure across the hardware, software, IT services and telecom markets.

Albo gets help from Lundy and Husic

When the full Rudd Ministry was sworn in at Government House yesterday two other MPs were given responsibilities in the Communications portfolio.

Anthony Albanese is the new Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy. But as we and many others have commented, he will be a very busy many, as Minister for Infrastructure and as Deputy Prime Minister.

But when the full Ministry was announced, Senator Kate Lundy was made Minister assisting for the Digital economy, and Ed Husic was made Parliamentary Secretary for Broadband. They will be able to take much of the administrative workload off Albanese.

Students step up to deliver university mobile apps

Entrepreneurial university students are filling a void of mobile developers in Queensland by building and selling applications to the University of Queensland and its students.

Former UQ student Aaron McDowall, together with fellow student Kim Hunter, built the university’s navigation app UQnav in 2011, as part of their Bachelor of IT studies. They successfully sold it to the university, which later hired them.