Budget initiatives boost vital digital skills training

Budget initiatives boost vital digital skills training

The Digital Skills Organisation (DSO) has welcomed the 2022-23 Budget measures that promote skills training and encourage more people into digital jobs to propel Australia into the technology future.

Patrick Kidd, CEO of the DSO, said “It’s fantastic to see the strong focus on skills training and technology in this year’s Budget. It’s predicted that 90% of Australians will be using digital skills in the next five years but this is likely to be accelerated as a result of the $1 billion boost for small businesses to go digital.

“The skills focus is the fastest way to get people the skills they need to thrive in their roles and help their companies grow. DSO is leading a skill-based approach, focused on drilling down on what employers need and making these skills more achievable for learners and training providers to incorporate.”

With almost 300,000 thousand more technology workers needed by 2025, there is already a critical gap when it comes to digital and tech skills in the labour market. The Budget is providing a tax deduction of $120 to small businesses for every $100 spent to train their employees.

“We’re pleased the Government has committed to tackling this talent shortage. One in five - almost half a million - Australians SMEs have no or low levels of digital adoption. Small businesses make up a huge component of the economy and we need to support them. DSO already has a number of incentives for small businesses with free training offered through SkillUP and its Digital Toolbox. The tax incentives for small businesses to train and upskill their workers is the kind of direct action we need to drive a skills revolution.” said Mr Kidd.

The DSO welcomes the Budget’s focus on gender equality. The $56.2 million of funding to assist women to transition into the booming tech industry ensures that digital skills will be a core focus of all workers. “With an estimated 156,000 new technology workers needed by 2025, the opportunities in the tech sector are endless. We must all work together to ensure digital pathways are well understood and easy to access,” said Mr Kidd.

The Government’s continued investment in its Digital Economy Strategy, including $30.2 million to extend its Cyber Hub pilots, is another indicator that demand for these skills will only increase. Now more than ever, the DSO will need to play a vital role in ensuring that industry and the training sector are working hand in hand to make sure that the best possible training is available and that it is accessible in what is likely to be a huge spike in demand.

“These Budget measures represent a huge step forward in terms of solving the digital skills crisis. The funding is there; now it is our turn to act. We at the DSO will be doing everything we can to help employees across Australia upskill with the support of their employers through simplifying approaches and boosting accessibility,” said Mr Kidd.

Media contact:

Paige Folta - 0414 899 929

About DSO

Established in 2020 and funded by the Australian Government, the Digital Skills Organisation (DSO) was a recommendation out of Strengthening Skills – Expert Review of Australia’s Vocational Education and Training System, a report by the Hon Stephen Joyce.

The DSO is championing an employer-led, skills-based approach while recognising digital skills are needed by everyone, and every employer, tech and non-tech. By connecting employers with training providers, the DSO will design, trial, evolve and scale new ways of training to equip learners with the skills needed to meet a rapidly changing, technological future while delivering against employers’ needs.

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