ACS and CAUDIT partner up to boost ICT industry relations

The Memorandum of Understanding aims to keep ICT educators' and professionals' skills up-to-date with industry demands

The Australian Computer Society (ACS) and Council of Australian University Directors of Information Technology (CAUDIT) have entered a joint agreement to strengthen ties between ICT professionals and educators.

The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) aims to keep ICT educators' and professionals' skills up-to-date with industry demands by providing members with recruitment assistance to CAUDIT members and access to ACS professional development programs.

According to the ACS, demand for ICT skills varies from state to state.

“The NBN (National Broadband Network)/high-speed broadband applications, mobility convergence, e-health, e-security, and other initiatives continue to drive demand for ICT skills,” ACS president, Nick Tate, told Computerworld Australia.

“Skills demands are also impacted by conditions and drivers in each State. For example, in 2011 in Queensland it was reported the flood recovery saw increased demand for business analyst roles.”

ACS chief executive, Alan Patterson, added: “Software developers and business analysts are the most in demand in NSW. The ACS predicts approximately 35,000 ICT jobs will be in demand by the end of 2013.”

The MoU will also enable the ACS and CAUDIT to engage in discussions at both a formal and informal level between the two bodies and their peers to guide skills development to meet industry needs.

“The new partnership between the ACS and CAUDIT opens the way for increased dialogue between educators and professionals in a more streamlined and constructive way,” Patterson said. “Students need to be inspired and excited about where a career in ICT can take them.

“Not only does there need to be continued reinvestment in and refinement of ICT education at a tertiary level, but this needs to be ongoing and inspire a commitment to lifelong learning among ICT professionals.”

CAUDIT president, Maureen Klinkert, added: “The MOU will strengthen the two-way dialogue and resources shared between ICT professionals and educators… The financial, educational and career opportunities available to Australians within the ICT sector are endless and we want to continue to provide a high level of ICT education to students.”

The announcement follows the continued ICT enrolment shortages at Australian universities.

“The ACS maintains there are not enough students choosing ICT as a career in Australia and domestic supply is not keeping up with demand,” Tate said.

“More focus is needed on attracting students to ICT as a rewarding and exciting career.” chief executive, Matt Barrie, last year attributed the decline of ICT enrolments to high school students perceiving the subject to be “not cool”.

Follow Diana Nguyen on Twitter: @diananguyen9

Follow Computerworld Australia on Twitter: @ComputerworldAU

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