ICT skill shortages?

A study into employment in the Australian information and communications technology Tom Peard(ICT) industry estimates that Australia will need an additional 33,000 ICT professionals by mid 2017 and that there will be insufficient skilled workers to meet this demand. Yet it says that graduates from ICT courses are having trouble finding work.

If you work in IT, you only have to look around your office to see the age group is heavily made up of Gen X and little to no Gen Y’s.

Why is this? And what can be done to change it?

Well firstly, you can’t get a Bachelor of IT and suddenly be a Project Manager or a Business Analyst. Those sorts of titles require years of experience.

A total of 69.7% of recent computer science graduates are now in employment, although not necessarily in jobs related to their studies, and 12.9% are unemployed, according to figures from the Higher Education Statistics Agency (Hesa).

Maybe we can rectify this problem by putting processes in place to help Graduates grow within their profession.

For example:

  • Summer vacation programs
  • Internships
  • Trade shows / exhibitions
  • Career days
  • Q&A sessions

Have a read through the article below to see a series of ideas the AWPA have presented to boost ICT skills in the market.

http://www.whatech.com/it-education/news/15428-wanted-8000-new-ict-workers-every-year

 

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IT Market Update

Tom PeardWhile things may seem to be tenuous in Queensland’s ICT industry, at least it’s never boring.

As a review of circumstances leading to QLD Health’s payroll debacle continues, IBM has been vigorously scrutinised over its role in the scandal, as well as the procurement process and surrounding decisions that led to IBM becoming the prime contractor in the payroll project.

As the inquiry is ongoing, the only solid message that seems to have been taken from this is that the failed project will be taken into account as a cautionary tale when planning for new ICT initiatives in QLD Government.

The federal election is looming, and as it does, the bottleneck of new ICT projects that seems to happen around this particular time grows. Whispers of changes in Government and policies have had there effect on new ventures across many sectors, as people wait to see what the future holds and what impact it will have on the decisions they make. This may result in an influx of new projects and increased hiring following the election, scheduled for September 7th.

Change will be forthcoming very shortly, but as always, it will be tempered by the past.

The Healthy, Happy Workplace

After coming back from a client visit to Toowoomba this week, where it is always noticeably cooler than Brisbane, it dawned on me that summer was truly over and that winter is just around the corner. Now for me, and probably most people who work in an office, this tends to mean more hours inside, less exercise and a greater consumption of the bad things that aren’t good for me! SueT

Add in the fact that we also spend most of our waking hours at work and travelling to and from work (not to mention the amount of time we spend thinking about it), our workplace health and wellbeing should be our number one concern.

For me the above is oh so true and even though I have worked in the health industry for over 10 years and ‘know better’, I have to honestly say that work/life balance has not always come first.

As I mentioned before, I am fairly sure most of us are in the same mindset. We want to be successful at work, we want to do what’s right for our team, yet what I think plagues most businesses and industries, is that the average person is stressed and doesn’t make the time to exercise or eat right. This inevitably reflects on the performance and attitudes of people at work.

When speaking with my colleagues and friends about this topic, I found that we all try different ways to keep ourselves healthy and happy in our personal lives. However when asked the additional question of “what do we do about our professional lives to keep us happy and healthy?” the point of view was very different.

I have seen many articles stating that wellbeing contributes to a healthy, happy, motivated and engaged workforce. In turn this positive wellbeing in the workplace has been shown to lower employee absence, keeps stress levels down and arguably helps to retain employees.

In the current financial climate, there are many low-cost and innovative ways to help your workforce in staying and getting healthy and happy. It could be as simple as having fresh fruit available, providing the opportunity to have an extra hour for lunch to go to the gym, contributing towards a gym membership, flexible working hours so that you can exercise in the mornings before work or leave early to exercise after work, group fitness sessions (group walks or activities) and access to information on how to keep healthy and happy.

There is literally an endless range of unique and low cost ideas you could offer your team to inspire them to being healthy and happy. So what does your organisation do, to encourage and support you in being healthy and happy at work?

Don’t forget to check out our homepage and follow us on LinkedIn from here – http://www.edenritchie.com.au/

The Future of Social Media for Business in 2013

goober

The telltale signs of another year drawing to a close are here – there’s glittering mountains of tinsel draped around the office, your co-workers are not-so-subtly pressing you for hints about Secret Santa gift ideas and retail workers have the first signs of a slow descent into madness in their eyes, brought on by Michael Bublé’s Christmas album being played steadily on repeat.

XmasI haven’t slept in 72 hours because I can’t get the words to ‘Santa Claus Is Coming to Town’ out of my head! Awesome!’

So what does next year hold for business in terms of social media? It’s been fascinating to watch it develop over the past year, and it continues to expand and evolve exponentially in short periods of time. Wishes and predictions included, here is just a tiny portion of the developments we can expect next year –

MS Outlook 2013 Will Offer One-Click LinkedIn and Facebook Integration

The new version of Microsoft Outlook, slated for release to the general public in the first quarter of 2013, will include a revamped LinkedIn and Facebook Social Connector which will allow the user to simply sign in once using their login details, with no additional download required for Outlook to sync with LinkedIn or Facebook. New features and previous ones include:

  • When a contact card is displayed, it will include information extracted from LinkedIn and FB (subject to the individuals privacy settings).
  • An add button displayed next to any email sender which allows you to easily invite them to connect with you on LinkedIn.
  • The latest activity of anyone who emails you and is a connection will be displayed at the bottom of their emails to you.

Emails are Becoming Obsolete

As social media continues to grow, it continues to change the way we approach interaction with each other – this is also true in a business capacity, rendering emails a backdated form of communication. So in order to keep up with these changing dynamics, companies may be inclined to follow Atos CEO Thierry Breton’s 2011 idea of making email obsolete by issuing a memorandum that discouraged the sending and receiving of internal emails. With an abundance of different ways to converse (Twitter, Sharepoint2013, LinkedIn) and share information (Dropbox, Wikis) available at the moment, there’s no better time to test what works best for you and your company.

What are you looking forward to in 2013?

Queensland IT Market Update

What a difference a couple of months make! It’s good to see some positivity returning to the Queensland IT market after a relatively quiet six month period following the state election in March this year. Whilst the market hasn’t yet returned to the busy times we saw during 2011 and the early part of 2012, it seems there is momentum building slowly across a number of organisations, with key projects requiring resources as we come into the traditionally quiet Christmas period. This bodes well for 2013, particularly as the State Government starts to undertake new projects following the results of the ICT Audit that it is close to finalising.

In a number of conversations with employers and candidates throughout the year, I have mentioned that I believe we will see significant growth in the market from around March next year. I still hold this belief after hearing QLD Government CIO, Peter Grant, speak at the ICT Industry Forum last week, where he mentioned the government’s plans for significant spending on ICT initiatives as we move into the New Year. This has a flow on effect for many private sector companies that are influenced by the spending, or lack of, by state and local government in Queensland.

So what does this mean for the ICT employment market? My expectation is that the need for ICT contractors will increase as these ICT projects begin. In the early months of 2013, we should see a steady increase in the number of contract roles, particularly Project Managers and Business Analysts. As the year continues, we should see growth across other areas as these projects ramp up their recruitment.

Despite what has been an up and down year for many, it is good to see some positive sentiment in the market. Good signs for the industry as we move into 2013!

Eden Ritchie Welcomes New Members

Like Angelina Jolie, Eden Ritchie can’t seem to stop welcoming new members into the family.  We welcome to the team:

Jessica Scerri: As part of the ever-expanding IT Division, Jessica joins ERR as an IT Recruitment Consultant. Jessica’s previous position was Corporate Account Manager for a global telecommunications, responsible for the management of global and national accounts, corporate acquisition and growth.

After hours, Jess loves to cook, loves to shop, enjoys going to the beach and has a keen interest in the property market. Hailing from Adelaide’s Barossa Valley originally, Jess enjoys visiting her family there and enjoying the wine country.

Emma Durham: Emma joins ERR in the role of Client Relationship Manager. Emma wound up in IT Recruitment after a night out with friends somehow resulted in Emma getting interviewed for a job with an IT Recruiter. She left her job as a marketer for a top tier law firm and commenced her career in Recruitment. Prior to ERR, Emma was the HR, Talent & Engagement manager at a Software Development Company.

Outside the office, Emma’s life is ruled by her mini schnauzer, Zara Belle-Jolie. When Emma’s not hanging with her pooch, she’s in the gym, or out running, with the odd night out for special occasions.

Belinda Mulé: Belinda is ERR’s new Manager, Operations. Belinda’s background is in Management, in the Professional Services Industry – primarily the Accounting industry where she was 2IC for 5 years.  Belinda has experience in various industries, including Engineering, Property Development and the Construction Industry.

Away from the office, Belinda loves movies, celebrities, reality TV and everything Hollywood. She loves red wine and is trying to get back into fitness, but is having a hard time slotting it in between shopping or socializing (which is fair enough).

Tom Peard: Tom joins the IT Team as a Resourcer, coming to Eden Ritchie from a small recruitment company with a wealth of experience in IT Recruitment. Prior to recruitment, Tom had an eclectic mix of jobs including Store Coordinator for The Works Australia and working as a jackaroo in Roma.

Tom enjoys playing rugby and fishing (even if he doesn’t catch anything). He’s always good for a laugh and enjoys socialising with his friends.

Sue Torenbeek: Joins us in the role of Health Consultant, with 6 years+ in Queensland Health. In her previous role with Qld Health, Sue was a Senior Clinical Recruiter sourcing healthcare professionals from across a broad spectrum of disciplines. Prior to that, Sue worked in London, for London Deanery as a Recruitment Administrator.

Sue has a passion for travelling and has travelled extensively across Europe and Colombia, with another trip planned soon. She loves fishing and whale watching (complimented perfectly by her sea sickness) and her two dogs.

Katherine Melville: Katherine is a new addition to the IT team, joining us as an IT Resourcer. Katherine’s previous role was as a Contact Centre and Customer Service Recruitment Consultant with a global Recruitment company. Before that, Katherine spent over 5 years with an insurance company as a Commercial Insurance Specialist.

Katherine loves socialising with her friends, listening to music and has a passion for cars.

We at Eden Ritchie are extremely pleased to welcome these individuals to our team.

Social Media and Job Seeking

Job seeking prior to the Internet. I can only imagine what a bleak time it was for humanity – akin to the dark ages perhaps. I have images of street urchins with black coal stained faces going door to door in search of employment, desperately trying to earn enough shillings to support their stricken families. But then again, I’m a Gen Y’er and since my first job, I’ve had sites such as Seek and Career One to simplify the process.

These sites mean a job seeker can browse hundreds of available jobs, find the perfect job for them and apply for it, all in a matter of minutes (depending on how fussy you are). Technology is a blessing for job seekers, however it is definitely a double-edged sword.

While job boards and networks like LinkedIn offer effective tools to find jobs and distribute resumes, people must remain conscious of the fact that their personal lives are also available to potential employers, should the employers choose to search for them. And that’s how simple it is – type in a name, click search and anything from personal images to videos and conversations are presented to anyone who cares to look for them. Thank God for privacy options. However some people just plain forget the basic things like ‘don’t make those pictures of you passed out in a bear suit available to the public’ or ‘don’t add your boss on Facebook’, resulting in situations such as this:
But how far do employers have a right to go? Is it acceptable for them to seek out your personal profiles? Is it acceptable for them to ask you for your login and password so they can enter your accounts themselves? A company needs to know what sort of person they’re going to employ, but not at the expense of individuals right to privacy. But with social media, privacy is becoming more and more ambiguous. It’s a wonderful tool, useful in so many different ways, but people need to bear in mind during their use of it that their personal information is about to be projected into the Internet ether and that it will be available for access to millions of people and that, for the most part, your privacy is controlled by you.

Are you a recruiter or responsible for hiring decisions? What do you think? This is an open debate – do any job seekers out there have experiences they want to share?