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New industry body has skills high on agenda

NZICT Group Media Release
For immediate release
16 December 2008

New industry body has skills high on agenda

More than 30 of the country’s leading ICT companies have agreed in principle to join together in the creation of a new ICT industry association.

NZICT Group will provide the industry with a single, unified voice with which to address issues facing the industry as a whole.

Interim Chair and Microsoft Managing Director, Kevin Ackhurst, says there is tremendous opportunity to increase awareness of the contribution ICT makes to New Zealand’s productivity, competitiveness and ultimately its economic growth. This was one of the key drivers behind the formation of NZICT Group.

“NZICT Group is our opportunity to raise awareness of the vital role ICT plays in New Zealand’s economic growth as well as providing a voice for the industry as a whole. We will work with government, with other associations and groups to help raise the industry’s profile and to get our message across: ICT is vital to New Zealand’s future."

NZICT Group will initially focus on three main areas: advocacy, raising the industry’s profile in terms of our economic delivery and the pressing issue of our looming skills shortage.

“The lack of skilled workers isn’t unique to New Zealand but in the current economic climate New Zealand business will be severely impacted by the shortage unless we do something about it. The skills shortage is the first issue that the NZICT Group will tackle head on."

With that in mind, NZICT Group will undertake a stock take of all current ICT related training activities in New Zealand, work to provide a form of accreditation for those courses that meet the standard and begin working on increasing the number of internships available within member organizations.

“We’re going to work closely with government at all levels for greater investment in these training programmes and develop a mentoring programme to take advantage of the existing wealth of knowledge and understanding that we have in the industry today."

“I cannot stress how important this issue is. If New Zealand is to compete in the digital economy we must have trained, skilled ICT professionals. New Zealanders are renowned around the world for their innovation, their skills and their work ethic and that means so many talented Kiwis leave for greener pastures. We need to give them a reason to come home and an industry to come home to."

Mr Ackhurst suggests that anyone wishing to become a member of NZICT Group contact Susan Wells on phone: 09 4145552 or via email: susan.wells@ict.org.nz Founding members of NZICT Group include: ACE, Augen, Axon, Catch, Cisco, ComputerForensics, Computer Power, EDS, Data Recovery, Designertech, EdTech, ExpressData, Fronde, Gen-I, Hewlett Packard, Hitachi Data Systems, Hyperion Management Services, Hyro, IBM, i-Consult, Lexel Systems, Kinetics, Mako Networks, Microsoft, Optimation, Quay Corporate, Show IT, SIMPL, SOFTsource, SQL Services, TEAMnetwork, Teleconsultants, TechTonics and XSOL.


ENDS

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