Diversity Champions to discuss the barriers and opportunities presented
Australia, embargoed 22 February, 2017: The ACS, the professional association for Australia’s ICT sector will host a breakfast panel discussion, ‘Diversity – How Far Have We Come?’ on Wednesday, 22 February from 7.30 to 9.00am, addressing how to break down diversity barriers in ICT and outline the progress made.
Hosted by ACS Victoria, the breakfast serves as a timely health check on the state of diversity in ICT and will feature a moderated panel of diversity champions. Together, speakers will share their expert opinion on the diversity agenda, including how it has differed with each generation, how we have evolved as a country, and how government, industry and broader business leaders can collaboratively advance diversity within the Australian ICT profession.
Key speakers and panellists include:
· Dr Amanda Caples, Lead Scientist to the Victorian Government
· Ajay Bhatia, Chief Product and Information Officer at carsales.com
· Jacqueline Savage, Founder of Medcorp Technologies
· Rohini Kappadath, Senior Advisor of India Business Practice at KPMG
· Maria Markman, diversity ambassador and newly appointed ACS Victoria Branch Executive Chair.
· Matthew Lee, Ex COO of Qantas and CEO of OACIS
The ACS has long been a leading voice in the diversity conversation. The organisation’s report, ‘The Promise of Diversity – Gender Equality in the ICT Profession’, found women represent only 28% of the ICT workforce compared to 43% across all professional services industries. Mature age workers (55 years and above) represent only 11% of the ICT workforce compared to 15% across all industries.
ACS Victoria Branch Executive Chair Maria Markman has identified diversity – both within the organisation and the ICT sector more broadly – as a key priority during her tenure.
“Improving ICT workforce diversity is a key challenge to addressing the sector’s skills shortages and improving business results. Recent projections also tell us that Australia will need 100,000 more ICT specialists by 2020.
“Diversity is a key component to meeting this projected demand. The ACS is actively working to improve gender balance, assist young people and those retraining in ICT, encourage diverse social and cultural backgrounds, and embrace workers with disabilities. We are proud to be taking a leading role in the generation and progression of ideas and actions that foster innovation through greater diversity,” said Ms Markman.
Ajay Bhatia, Chief Product and Information Officer at carsales.com added, “Put simply it is the right thing to do for our country and our business. Constant disruption in the marketplace will continue to change what our customers are demanding from us. We need to embrace the diversity of our workforce so that we are prepared for changes and equipped to seize opportunities.”
What: ACS Victoria Diversity Breakfast, Diversity – How Far Have We Come?
When: Wednesday, 22 February 2017
Venue: Zinc, Federation Square, Swanston St & Finders St Melbourne, 3000
Who: Dr Amanda Caples – Lead Scientist to the Victorian Government
Maria Markman – ACS Victoria Branch Executive Chair
Ajay Bhatia – Chief Product and Information Officer, carsales.com
Rohini Kappadath – Senior Advisor of India Business Practice at KPMG and Chair of the Multicultural Ministerial Business Advisory Council
Matthew Lee – Ex COO of Qantas and CEO of OACIS
Jacqueline Savage – Founder and Director of Medcorp Technologies and 2016 Winner of the Emerging Women in Leadership Awards
Full speaker bios available here. Speakers are available for interview upon request.
About the ACS
The ACS is the professional association for Australia’s Information and Communication Technology (ICT) sector. Over 20,000 ACS members work in business, education, government and the community. The ACS exists to create the environment and provide the opportunities for members and partners to succeed. The ACS strives for ICT professionals to be recognised as drivers of innovation in our society, relevant across all sectors, and to promote the formulation of effective policies on ICT and related matters. Visit www.acs.org.au for more information.
 ACS Digital Pulse, 2016