DTA wants to hire 250 'digital superstars'

The government's transformation agency wants to nab the digitally-minded talent before it's lost to the private sector.
Written by Asha Barbaschow, Contributor

Over the next 12 months, the Digital Transformation Agency (DTA) is hoping to recruit 250 entry-level staff to fill federal government roles.

The jobs will have a "digital" focus, as skilled staff is crucial to the government delivering effective digital services, a statement from Assistant Minister for Digital Transformation Angus Taylor explains.

"The private sector is well ahead of us in terms of signing up talent," he said. "We want the next group of digital superstars to see government as a great place to start their career."

Taylor expects up to 300 cadets and 700 apprentices will apply for DTA training programs that are currently recruiting, as part of the government's AU$13.9 million, three-year commitment to build digital capability.

As previously highlighted by the Committee for Economic Development of Australia, the world is facing a global skills shortage, with predictions that more than 5 million jobs -- almost 40 percent of Australian jobs that exist today -- have a moderate to high likelihood of disappearing in the next 10 to 15 years, citing technological advancements as the reason.

The DTA and the Australian Public Service (APS) Commission have started design work on future digital literacy programs aimed at attracting new talent for digital roles, through expanding existing IT entry-level programs.

The design work follows an announcement last September that the federal government was planning to tackle the data skills shortage across all levels of public service.

"It is important -- both in government and in non-government sectors -- that we remain committed to improving the data skills and capability of our workforce. Data skills are critical for developing evidence-based policy, which is so important in improving the lives of Australians," Taylor said at the time.

The plan also involves developing digital skills for executives in a bid to achieve better service delivery.

Also on the agenda for the DTA and APS is to increase its talent retention through "defining digital career pathways, opening up new opportunities, and better ongoing support".

Additionally, Taylor said the DTA will be looking into identifying and establishing training opportunities through the Digital Marketplace as part of its investment in IT capability.

The government's Digital Marketplace is an initiative aimed at getting SMEs involved in the government's IT spend. It's touted by the DTA as an ecosystem where government buyers and sellers can "connect" with smaller suppliers.

Similarly, the Department of Human Services (DHS) put a call out in March to 125 university graduates who have completed a degree in science, technology, engineering, or mathematics (STEM)-related fields to join the department.

DHS sought to fill six-month positions across Canberra, Adelaide, and Brisbane in areas such as IT architecture, business analysis, design, system engineering, development, testing, and data analysis, with some participants to be offered permanent employment at the end of their half-year stint.

Editorial standards