OzTech: Aussie CIO and CISO priorities for 2022; New effort on digital skills; Telstra news from MWC; Young ICT Explorers winners

OzTech Roundup is Computerworld Australia’s weekly look at the world of IT.

oztech roundup
Getty Images/IDG

Australian, New Zealander CIO and CISO priorities for 2022

New research has found that CIOs in Australia and New Zealand will prioritise attracting and retaining talent in 2022.

The study from research and advisory firm Adapt found that contrary to 2020, when concerns with cybersecurity was ranked fourth, 83% of CIOs now place cybersecurity as their second-highest business priority. CIOs’ next priorities are improving operational effectiveness, creating a data-driven organisation, and acquiring and retaining customers.

Upskilling and training investment is the top priority for 65% of CIO respondents, followed by leadership development (64%), IT culture development (60%), cybersecurity awareness programs (56%), and workflow automation (52%).

When it came to talent shortfalls, CIOs noted a lack of data architects (cited by 50% of respondents), cloud-configuration expertise (47%), data scientists (44%), full-stack developers (43%), system integration specialists (42%), AI experts (41%), and cybersecurity experts (41%).

CISOs are more concerned about building a secure and trusted organisation, the study said. The second and third highest priorities for CISOs are creating a data-driven organisation followed by ensuring compliance and governance.

Chief digital officers’ top three priorities are, in order, improving operational effectiveness, creating a data-driven organisations, and digitisation of workflow and processes.

New project aims to narrow the digital skills gap

The Digital Skills Organisation (DSO) is developing and trialling a pathways model that proposes four components — purpose, pathways, proficiency, and performance — that can be used to define all technology careers, rather than focusing on specific occupations. The goal is to help an individual or organisation to understand the skills needed for careers.

The DSO says that one of the main constraints is the language used to describe and promote digital skills; that offputting language scares people away. The pathways will be shaped by industry demand and described in a unifying language and taxonomy recognised by all, to help align employers, learners, and training providers. This approach aims to:

  • Better enable people to make informed decisions as they prepare for employment or self-employment, acquire digital skills, or change careers.
  • Help employers identify what they need.
  • Align training providers on the priorities to design education or training strategies.

“This makes it easier for employers to describe their needs, and simpler for learners to understand how their experience and potential translates into a digital career,” said Patrick Kidd, DSO’s CEO.

The DSO is consulting with industry, the training sector, and other key stakeholders on the proposed pathways model to test and confirm the critical building blocks needed to move forward.

Telstra announcements at Mobile World Congress 2022

In the same week where it was revealed Ericsson allegedly sought permission from the Islamic State in Syria to work in an ISIS-controlled city and allegedly paid to smuggle equipment into ISIS areas, according to a leaked internal investigation report obtained by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, Australia’s biggest telecommunications provider, Telstra, announced continued partnerships with the Swedish-based Ericsson.

At the Mobile World Congress 2022, Telstra announced the SD-WAN-enabled 5G edge product focused on extending private connectivity (5G and fixed) and cloud services to the customer and network edge. The product was developed in partnership with Ericsson and Microsoft. It is designed to help customers implement cloud-first, IoT enablement, and advanced analytics strategies.

Telstra said that, through a collaboration with Qualcomm Technologies and Ericsson, it has set a new network download speed record of 5.9Gbps using a smartphone-style test device, powered by a Snapdragon X65 5G Modem-RF System, a Qualcomm FastConnect 6900 subsystem, an Ericsson radio system, and dual connectivity software connected to Telstra’s commercial mmWave 5G mobile network.

Telstra also said it will launch in April 2022 a mmWave-compatible 5G device, its third, in partnership with Netgear.

Winners of Young ICT Explorers competition

SAP has announced the winners of its 13th Young ICT Explorers competition, for technology innovations pioneered by Australian students. Past winners have turned their projects into commercial enterprises, such as Blake Garrett, who created School Bytes to streamline the process of sending statements of account to parents. That program is now used by more than 470 schools across New South Wales and Garrett became a sponsor of Young ICT Explorers in 2021.

Out of 31 finalists, the winners were two New South Wales young inventors (years 3-4 and 11-12), a Victoria-based team and a Victoria independent entrant (years 7-8 and 9-10) ,and a Queensland team (year 5-6).

The winners were:

  • Medibot 2.0, by Sol Crisp, West Pymble Public School, New South Wales. Medibot is a pill reminder system based on voice recognition technology, allowing a caregiver to enter the pills a patient needs to take, and record whether they have been taken.
  • Stretchy 365, by Lucinda Coyle and Lincoln Rucker, St Joseph's Bardon, Queensland: Stretchy 365 is a microbit that detects the amount of tension in a stretch sensor to indicate if a potential asthma attack could be coming on.
  • Bushfire Recovery AI Drone, Chengyun Xu, Nabhanya Gupta, Vinay Raghavan, and Sanjay Parappat, Haileybury, Victoria: The BRAID uses artificial intelligence to analyse acreage and provides telemetry on what it has observed, for harvesting purposes and the examination of land for water or dried leaf patches.
  • Giraffe Walker, by Rebecca Paratz, Bailik College, Victoria: Giraffe Walker is a self-levelling, intelligent, all-terrain walker which allows the elderly to safely travel up and down stairs and traverse uneven surfaces.
  • SatAlight, by Dong Duong (Dylan) Nguyen, St Andrew's Cathedral School, New South Wales: SatAlight is an AI system built to rapidly assess the bushfire proneness of land areas, using satellite imagery to accurately classify vegetation based on its bushfire risk

SAP doesn’t fund any projects but assists in making credible connections in the industry to get the students’ ideas out into the real world.

Copyright © 2022 IDG Communications, Inc.

7 inconvenient truths about the hybrid work trend
Shop Tech Products at Amazon