Govt kicks of trial to redesign digital qualifications, training

The federal government is set to test new approaches to designing digital qualifications and training under a trial aimed at meeting the changing needs of employers and job seekers in the tech sector.

The qualification design trial will create “improved qualifications and training” by working with employers, job seekers and training providers, employment minister Stuart Robert said on Thursday.

It is being led by the Digital Skills Organisation (DSO), one of three industry-led Skills Organisation Pilots set up last year to co-design improvements to the vocational education and training (VET) system.

According to its website, the DSO aims to shape the VET system by “identifying skills needs, developing agile qualifications and improving the quality of training delivery and assessment”.

The DSO has already conducted a pilot that saw three training providers – General Assembly, TAFE Queensland and indigenous IT training provider Goanna – test new ways to train 100 data analysts.

The new trial will build on this by “reconceptualising and designing qualifications from the ground up”, with a focus on entry-level data analysts and “more general digital skills required across the workforce”.

Robert, who has carriage of the government’s digital agenda, said the trial would ensure “qualifications are fit-for-purpose so we can improve our skills pipeline and bring more Australians into our digital workforce”.

“This trial will provide a picture of what specialist digital skills are needed, improve the relationship between employers and the training system, and get more people into jobs,” he said.

Robert added that Australia’s digital workforce “is fundamental to our future prosperity” and an important part of the government’s pandemic recovery plan.

As part of that plan, the government has included 10,000 additional skills training places through the $2 billion JobTrainer fund aimed at reskilling 17 to 24 year olds and the unemployed.

JobTrainer, which was originally planned to expire in September 2020, was extended for another year in this year’s federal budget.