Closing the skills gap is about shifting mindsets and building on what works

Closing the skills gap is about shifting mindsets and building on what works

Are you interested in taking part in a unique opportunity that places employers in the driving seat of the vocational education and training (VET) system?

Join us on this journey as we venture to become the Industry Cluster lead for Finance, Technology and Business in partnership with PwC's Skills for Australia so we can help you:

  • Build capability at pace and in innovative, new ways.
  • Cut red tape and remove blockages.
  • Integrate through collaboration and action.
  • Deliver diversity through inclusion.

The impacts of COVID-19 and a rapidly changing economy are affecting the way we work.

While the strength of Australia’s VET system has long been internationally recognised, employer satisfaction has fallen in the last 10 years, with only 41 percent stating the system currently meets the needs of their business.

On 3 December 2021 the Australian Government called for the overhaul of the VET system, establishing nine new Industry Clusters to meet evolving skills and training needs of industry. This is a significant reform which places employers and industry at the heart of the training system, with the goal of ensuring Australia has people with the right skills for the workplace.

Aligned in a shared vision to operate on behalf of industry, Digital Skills Organisation (DSO) has joined forces with PwC's Skills for Australia to provide the cut through leadership needed to help shape the future of skills in the Finance, Technology and Business Industry Cluster.

As a vehicle to engage employers and industry and ensure their views are represented in this important work, DSO CEO Patrick Kidd was joined by PwC’s Skills for Australia’s CEO Ian Persechino, to host a collaborative Industry Cluster Discussion Forum.

Highlighting participants current challenges and identifying their highest priority skill needs, this forum provided useful insight into how best to empower employers and industry to drive the national skills agenda. When asked how can you be encouraged to become more engaged, participants shared the following:

  • Better access to relevant training,
  • Openness with competitors to collaborate to raise the intellectual capital of their workforce,
  • Greater industry say, broader interactions with education providers and more input into Training Packages.

Speaking to the importance of widespread representation, Patrick Kidd emphasised the need for diversity in collaboration, recognising every voice has a place to be heard.

“It’s absolutely vital that we create systems and mechanisms that enable very broad groups of representatives to come together so we can capture their observations and make sense of them as we move forwards.”

At the core of the new engagement model is the concept of industry leading and owning the process. Employers will be given the ability to lead the process by being included throughout the training design and delivery phases. In essence, designing training to better meet your needs.

However, if we’re to have any success in rebooting the VET system to ensure it is relevant to industry needs and has the capability and capacity to produce enough talent at the right time, we need employers to be at the forefront of delivering this change.

So what is the most important thing they need us to get right? Let’s take a look:

  • Flexible training products which have a ‘long’ product life and can address changing needs,
  • Cross sector skill development,
  • Ownership, inclusion and collaboration,
  • Funding.

As we commit ourselves to working with you to ensure your voice is heard, solutions are effective, and that we unite all stakeholders on a common vision to drive the changes needed, we invite you to be involved in the journey by:

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