Tasmania leads with a Vision for the Workforce – Investing in Skills for Growth

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Taking a lead nationally to outline a vision for the Tasmanian workforce, Investing in Skills for Growth, has 3 goals:

  1. A more efficient and competitive training system.
  2. A greater focus on delivering real skills for real jobs.
  3. Investing in skills that drive State growth.

This policy statement takes the Ministerial Priorities for Training and Workforce Development for 2014-15 towards a road map that shows how the Government’s objectives will be achieved.

Importantly there is a focus on,

Supporting our workplaces to develop the capacity of their workforces to be sustainable and seize growth opportunities…. strong engagement and relationships with Tasmanian industries and a shared commitment to deliver real skills for real jobs.

There is a clear connection between economic development and workforce development,

This Government will stay focussed in its commitment to support economic growth through developing the skills of its people and supporting the strategic workforce development of its industries.

Understanding employer and industry needs is not always a given and this will require collaboration, conversation, creativity and commitment to draw out current and future workforce requirements.

The MOU Program for Strategic Industry Advice will be extended to:

  • the information and communication technology industry
  • tourism and hospitality
  • the rich diversity of Tasmanian small business advanced manufacturing.

And options to work with the Australian Government to refocus investment in skills for Tasmanian growth, will be explored.

It is great to see a state government using the model of economic and industry priorities to design workforce development strategies and provide support.  This includes supporting,

  • industry sectors to strategically plan for the workforce needs of the future.
  • employers to acquire and retain the skills they need now, and to align their human resources with their future business strategy.
  • business investment strategies with attractive skills and workforce development programs.

Regional priorities should also feature in the next stage of implementation as well as those for different types of networks like export partners, supply chains or clusters.

Entrepreneurship

Perhaps an area that needs further expansion and innovative thinking is,

Develop[ing] unique and innovative programs that equip skilled Tasmanians to be enterprising and entrepreneurial, creating new employment and business futures.

This may include coaching and mentoring, non accredited training, partnering with Startup Tasmania, co-working spaces, initiatives like BO$$ camp for young entrepreneurs, scale up programs and business transformation for existing businesses.

A note for providers

For training providers what this may mean for you includes:

  • applying different financial models with increased competition
  • demonstrating of closer engagement with employers and industry including validation of skills development
  • identifying of productivity improvements across all operations
  • building a productive RTO workforce with a workforce plan focusing on the future
  • creatively designing products and programs within much shorter timeframes
  • understanding workforce demand related to economic, industry and regional priorities
  • working backwards from successful outcomes to skills development and assessment

What’s next?

Aside from consultation, what is needed now is a detailed action [doing] plan with priorities, new ideas for practical solutions, consideration of timelines (shorter and targeted) and communication with stakeholders.

Written by Wendy Perry, Head Workforce Planner, Workforce BluePrint, January 2015.

 

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