Australian Information Industry Association


Technology leadership the key to unlocking a strong jobs economy in Queensland, says AIIA

Tuesday, 12 Dec 2017

The Australian Information Industry Association (AIIA), the peak member body for the ICT industry, congratulates the re-elected Palaszczuk-led Labor Government and calls on the Premier to show technology leadership to unlock strong jobs growth.

Rob Fitzpatrick, CEO of the AIIA says, “Congratulations to the Labor party on being re-elected. The AIIA looks forward to working with the Queensland Government, along with elected officials across all party lines, to help further lift Queensland’s prosperity and growth as a matter of priority.

“Queensland’s digital future is exciting and there is clear opportunity for Government to take the lead and speed up Queensland’s digital transformation. Despite bipartisan agreement to transform to ‘digital government’, Queensland government agencies are hamstrung by legacy technology systems and business processes.

“Investment is limited, and a sense of urgency is required to ‘step up’ to leverage modern technology platforms such as cloud and more agile approaches. More funding is needed to update government services to ensure Queensland isn’t left behind States like NSW and Victoria. These solutions need to extend to and build capability in regional areas,” concludes Fitzpatrick.

The AIIA says there are three key areas the Palaszczuk Government needs to prioritise:

  • Digital transformation of Government;
  • Development and maturity of Australia’s digital talent and skills base; and
  • Growth of Queensland’s innovation and commercialisation capacity.

The AIIA looks forward to working closely with Queensland Government on these three key priorities.

Digital transformation of Government

According to Deloitte, 40 per cent of the estimated 811 million transactions conducted at the federal and state levels each year are still completed using traditional channels. As the biggest spender of ICT services, the AIIA believes the state governments should be the exemplar of digital transformation.

“This past election itself has been a perfect example. With electronic voting in place, the outcome of the election would have been known sooner and the electoral process would cost fewer taxpayer dollars to run in the long term,” said Mr Fitzpatrick.

To be a leading state government in the adoption of new digitally enabled service delivery models, the AIIA calls on the Queensland Government to accelerate its digital transformation by:

  • Committing to raise the priority the continuity of the Queensland Government’s digital transformation strategy;
  • Further investment to update Queensland Government’s digital infrastructure, systems and processes; and
  • Mandating consistent data availability and access policies for state and local Queensland levels of government.

Development and maturity of Queensland’s digital talent and skills base

Ninety per cent of Australia’s workforce will need some level of digital literacy in the next two to five years, and these technical skills will need to be combined with broader enterprise skills. [SOURCE: Foundation for Young Australians, 2016].

To build the world-class, data-driven workforce needed for the future, the AIIA calls on the Palaszczuk Government to:

  • Undertake an audit of Queensland’s skill base to better understand potential gaps and areas of required skills development to future proof Queenslanders for the jobs of the future;
  • Work with industry to implement an employment-based higher apprenticeship scheme to specifically address the shortfall in ICT and digital technology skills in Queensland; and
  • Mandate across all levels of education that digital literacy is as crucial to a person’s employment prospects as numeracy and literacy. Reflect this mandate through employment and education for existing Government staff.

Growth of Queensland’s innovation and commercialisation capacity

With the number of people in employment declining and the cost of the ageing population increasing, Queensland’s growth and competitiveness hinges on its ability to innovate.  [SOURCE: ABS 6354.0].

To ensure Queensland has an attractive and effective business ecosystem that incentivises businesses to remain and grow in Queensland and develop their export capability, AIIA calls on the Government to:

  • Place more emphasis on nurturing a supportive innovation culture that is tolerant of business risk. This may be achieved by providing funding to the Office of the Queensland Chief Entrepreneur to not only promote success but provide practical learnings to grow a resilient innovation culture across Queensland businesses;
  • Agree to a strategic, bipartisan approach to building Queensland’s innovation and entrepreneur capabilities. This includes a commitment to building partnerships with industry, small business, startups and research organisations and providing certainty and stability of innovation support policy and funding opportunities; and
  • Support the existing Advance Queensland Industry Attraction Fund and Business Development Fund. Government should also consider investigating innovative funding platforms such as crowdfunding and microfinance (in addition to what’s available at the federal level) as a mechanism to open up funding options for innovative initiatives.

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About AIIA

The Australian Information Industry Association (AIIA) is Australia’s peak representative body and advocacy group for those in the digital ecosystem. Since 1978 AIIA has pursued activities to stimulate and grow the digital ecosystem, to create a favorable business environment for members and to contribute to Australia’s economic prosperity. We do this by delivering outstanding member value by providing a strong voice of influence; building a sense of community through events and education; enabling a network for collaboration and inspiration; and developing compelling content and relevant and interesting information.

Media Contacts

For more information please contact:
Jeffrey Coote
Tel: (02) 8355 3130