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Leaders meet to tackle ICT staffing issues

Business and Education leaders meet to tackle Auckland’s ICT staffing issues

Auckland, July 14, 2004 – A powerful group of business and education leaders will meet in Auckland next week to tackle employment issues faced by the region’s Information and Communications Technology sector.

The launch workshop for the Auckland Regional ICT Skills Forum is being convened by the Auckland Regional Economic Development Strategy (AREDS).

AREDS Chief Executive Susan Macken said the forum was intended to bring together ICT employers and educational providers so they could work together to identify ways of enhancing the provision of skills and talent to the ICT sector.

AREDS is a regional economic development agency working with Auckland communities, businesses, and local authorities to implement the strategy and its vision for the region’s economic future.

“Many businesses in the ICT sector have talked with us about the problems they face in attracting and retaining suitable staff with competencies, skills and experience to meet their business needs,” Dr Macken said.

“Bringing employers and educators together through the forum will enable us to identify the issues and drive a tight, focused process find solutions.”

Specifically, it is envisaged the forum will: Identify issues in ICT education and skills in the region and produce an issues paper summarising these; Host workshops to facilitate industry discussion on issues; Produce an education strategy for the Auckland ICT community.

The launch workshop is being held at AUT Technology Park, Great South Road, Penrose, from noon on Friday July 23rd.

AREDS is working with training organisation ETITO to facilitate the forum process and to identify the tangible action the region’s ICT sector needs to take.

For its part, AUT is committed to delivering the skills needed by the ICT industry and is making a growing contribution to ICT research.

“Auckland is home to a significant portion of New Zealand’s ICT sector, a significant share of the nation’s labour force, and a considerable proportion of New Zealand’s tertiary and skills provision,” Dr Macken said.

“The ICT sector is forecast to grow considerably in the Auckland Region. Equally, it faces a number of issues and constraints, several of which relate to education and training, such as skills shortages and the need for interdisciplinary skills training.”

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