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A new Technology Skills Passport has been developed by the Australian Technology Network of Universities (ATN). It will help equip workers with the skills they will need in the growing tech sector. This initiative is part of a $5 million election commitment recently announced by the Coalition.
With this new technology skills passport, workers will be able to match their existing skills and experience with the needs of the technology sector and work their way through the academic and professional education sectors. This initiative will build on the tradition of ATN universities to train students to engage and shape the world of work through flexible, adaptive and innovative education.
By 2025, Australia will need nearly 300,000 new tech workers. The country will also need 12,000 university and VET graduates as well as 60,000 more skilled and retrained workers than it is currently preparing. To speed up the process, ATN universities will partner with vocational training providers and the technology industry to co-design, deliver and identify skills, and provide professional support to help people capitalize on their skills.
The Technology Skills Passport will also benefit from ATN’s work with Designing Your Future – a short course that provides workers with a toolkit to solve problems, figure out what they want in a career and take practical steps to achieve their career goals.
The ATN President said the initiative is a response to ATN’s calls for government to partner with academia and industry to provide solutions to address the pressing and persistent needs for skills, respond flexibly to emerging needs and create a vision to meet Australia’s challenges and opportunities. He noted that the tripartite partnership between academia, industry and government is key to achieving better outcomes for industry, workers and the economy.
Meanwhile, the ATN Executive Director noted that the coalition is proud to have the opportunity to develop a Technology Skills Passport that draws on the best of ATN universities’ experience in the preparing students for the world of work, offering innovative education options and partnering with industry and vocational education.
Upskilling and Retraining Australians
To deliver on its commitment to make Australia one of the top ten digital and data economies by 2030, the Australian Government launched the Digital Skills Cadetship Trial in late March 2022. The trial will combine internships and apprenticeships on the job with formal training, helping cadets put classroom lessons into practice and match employers with the brightest tech talent.
The trial is expected to focus on growing fields including cybersecurity, cloud computing and data analytics, and target cohorts including those who have been displaced as a result of COVID-19 or who return to the labor market.
The essay will have a strong focus on supporting women in the tech workforce, including women considering a mid-career change or re-entering the workforce after a hiatus. Each cadet will span four to six months and may include vocational or higher education units, as well as industry training.
The Minister for Jobs, Labour, Skills, Small Business and Family Businesses said the trial is part of building a pipeline of digitally-enabled workers that will provide Australian businesses the skills they need to innovate – and individuals the opportunities to help them succeed.
The Digital Skills Cadetship Trial will provide $10.7 million to support innovative cadet approaches to digital career paths and to increase the number of Australians with digital skills. The minister noted: “We are investing over $100m in digital talent to future-proof Australia’s economy and the cadets are just one measure – we are funding cyber projects and scholarships in emerging technologies, including the IA, across Australia as part of our National Digital Economy Strategy.