NZICT, the lobby group for the ICT industry, is working on a stocktake and assessment of the value of current training courses in ICT. The project is a contribution by NZICT to assist in tackling the skills shortage in the industry.
The organisation will continue to “seek interaction” with the other organisations that were members of the Digital Development Council (DDC), says NZICT chairman and Microsoft New Zealand managing director Kevin Ackhurst.
The DDC is now essentially defunct following removal of its government funding.
Since NZICT’s funding is sourced privately from its members, the removal of funding from the DDC does not affect it directly, Ackhurst points out.
The industry lobby group’s immediate priorities include achieving a higher profile for the industry in terms of ICT’s economic delivery.
“We are working to raise awareness of the vital role ICT plays in New Zealand’s economic growth [through] working with government, with other associations and groups to help raise the industry’s profile and to get our message across that ICT is vital to New Zealand’s future.”
The skills shortage is the first issue the NZICT will focus on, he says.
“The stocktake of all current ICT-related training activities in New Zealand is underway. We are working to provide a form of accreditation for those courses that meet the standard and [also] begin working on increasing the number of internships available within member organisations.
“The group is working closely with government for greater investment in training programmes and will also develop a mentoring programme to take advantage of existing knowledge and understanding within the industry.
“We want to engage with NZ Incorporated and various organisations, to advance government plans for the industry and New Zealand’s economy,” he says. Ackhurst has been responsible for steering the group in its formative stages. NZICT is about to announce the appointment of a new chairperson.