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When CompTIA held its successful first ANZ Channel Community meeting in August this year, we knew we had started something important and exciting for the local IT channel. Just four months later, we welcomed more than 120 representatives to our second local community meeting in Sydney, and our very first meeting in Melbourne for the Victorian community.
That we could pull together a series of successful meetings so soon after our inaugural gathering in the local region reflects CompTIA’s rapid growth in Australia and New Zealand since we launched in June 2015. We now have more than 1,000 registered users particpating in the ANZ Channel Community. We have our foundation members in the local industry to thank for this growth.
Like our initial event in August, the two latest meetings in Sydney and Melbourne got the local community talking about the challenges it is facing now, and expectations for the future. Through discussion and collaboration, we addressed some of these challenges and considered the solutions that will help us, as a single community, overcome them.
Many of the emerging challenges arise from some of the top continuing trends we expect to see dominate the local market in 2016, notably cloud technology, data-driven business, connectivity, and automation. These are forcing a significant change in the way we do business.
The attendees in Sydney and Melbourne identified and discussed the increasing skills shortage as one of the continuing factors holding the local market back from reaching its full potential.
There are predictions that we will see a 100,000-person skills shortage in the local IT industry over the next five years. This a huge shortfall that could cost us dearly in missed opportunities. Yet the youth unemployment rate is expected to hit 20 per cent in the same period of time. So, one of the best things we can do as an industry is to support IT and technical skills training at school. The next generation can fill our needs, but only if we teach it how.
With this in mind, the local community members who attended our latest meetings voted to support two CompTIA ANZ Channel Community initiatives, one of which is aimed at getting more women involved in IT. The Dream IT program, by CompTIA’s Advancing Women in IT Community group is designed to even up the gender imbalance in the IT industry through education and community discussion. The other initiative that the local community chose to support in 2016 was the CompTIA ‘localising content’ project, aimed at creating resources specifically for the ANZ market.
With these meetings wrapped up, it’s now time for us to focus on the next round of meetings in 2016. These will give us all more opportunities to get the local industry together to help drive the local IT channel forward.
For more information or to join the community visit: https://www.comptia.org/communities/anz-channel