- Telstra has initiated a parliamentary inquiry into the skilled migration program of Australia.
- In its written submission to the inquiry, Telstra said that “Our strong preference is to recruit and train local staff wherever possible.”
- Telstra also suggested that the government should consider providing an exemption from labour market testing in addition to changes to the occupation lists.
Telstra is Australia’s largest telecommunications company by market share. According to the company, the key roles for the telco are now covered by the latest Skilled Migration Occupation Lists. However, the company wants the federal government to expand the Priority Skilled Migration Occupation List to include several additional jobs. In this case, a new data scientist role should be created and added to the priority list. The 18 occupations in this role currently include programmers and software engineers.
The Priority Skilled Migration Occupation List is underpinned by three lists namely the Short-Term Skilled Occupation List, the Medium and Long-Term Strategic Skills List, as well as the Regional Occupation List. These lists are routinely reviewed to guarantee that they reflect authentic skills that are valuable for businesses to continue to grow.
Telstra has initiated a parliamentary inquiry into the skilled migration program of Australia. In their inquiry case, the priority list should include computer network and systems engineers, ICT security specialists, and ICT business analysts.
In its written submission to the inquiry, Telstra said that “Our strong preference is to recruit and train local staff wherever possible.” The company further added that it does that through its graduate program, internships, and training. They also pursue an ongoing investment geared to the development of their employees.
Nevertheless, Telstra said that it continues “to find it difficult, in general, to source appropriate local candidates to fill specialised technology roles.”
Telstra then added: “While we remain committed to sourcing local talent first, the reality is that the demand for local talent far outweighs the number of people available with these skills.”
According to the research that the company made around 18 months ago, the country had less than 2% of the global supply of critical technology talent. As a result of this, over the next half-decade, the country will most likely experience a shortfall of around 60,000 skilled ICT workers.
The company further added that the number of domestic graduates in Australia proves to be insufficient to “bridge the growing technology skills gap.” Telstra also said that recent graduate student cohorts have included a “large number of international graduates employed on visas.”
Telstra also suggested that the government should consider providing an exemption from labour market testing in addition to changes to the occupation lists. This will prove to be beneficial when an employee has a 482 visa that is expiring “particularly for technology occupations where local skill shortages are prevalent.”