Workforce | Skills

Skilling Australia’s workforce for future technologies is key to economic growth - CEDA research

A greater focus on skilling Australians in the workforce will be key to unlocking Australia’s future economic growth, CEDA research has found.

In releasing CEDA’s latest report on Monday, Connecting people with progress: securing future economic development, CEDA CEO Melinda Cilento said the report identified workplace, workforce and collaboration as one of five policy stack priority areas.

“Ensuring Australian workers are skilled in emerging technologies will be crucial to unlocking new opportunities for growth,” she said.

“Technology is providing opportunities for businesses to do things differently.

“While there has been much focus on job destruction from technological advance and artificial intelligence, Australia needs a far greater focus on skilling our workforce to capture the opportunities.

“Education systems will need to evolve with industry to better equip Australians for the jobs of the future.

“Educators and employers need to develop a model for a new generation of learners who will have a career of 20-30 jobs on average.

“We also need to re-engage workers on the importance of life-long learning, with previous CEDA results showing us that few in the community see access to new skills and training throughout their working life as important.

“Increasing individuals focus on developing skills in and out of work throughout their careers and lives, will require reform of the current system.”

“CEDA research also found that Australia needs to look at better ways of including underrepresented groups into the workforce, unlocking extra workplace participation and productivity and ensuring workers displaced by technology do not fall into long-term unemployment and disadvantage.

“Our research shows that getting the long-term unemployed and people with complex needs back into the workforce will require far more tailored solutions than what is currently available through the Government’s JobActive model.

“In the last decade, Australia has struggled to have a joined-up conversation about working smarter, with all the stakeholders involved and full scope of issues covered.

“Achieving a genuine dialogue across the full range of issues confronting Australia’s workforce is critical not just for lifting productivity and wages, but for ensuring that Australia realises its full potential and
that Australians feel like they are contributing to that through meaningful work.”
Melinda Cilento is available for further comment and interviews.

Along with workplace, workforce and collaboration, CEDA’s new policy stack to deliver future economic development for Australia includes technology and data; population; critical services; and institutions. 
To read more on each of the policy stack areas, download the full report, Connecting people with progress: securing future economic development.

Connecting people with progress: securing future economic development full report 

Connecting people with progress: securing future economic development summary report
Connecting people with progress: securing future economic development  infographic brochure 

About CEDA

CEDA – the Committee for Economic Development of Australia – is an independent, not-for-profit membership organisation.

We identify policy issues that matter for Australia’s future. We work to drive policies that deliver better economic, social and environmental outcomes for Australia. We deliver on our purpose by: Leveraging insights from our members to identify and understand the most important issues Australia faces. Facilitating collaboration and idea sharing to invoke imaginative, innovative and progressive policy solutions. Providing a platform to stimulate thinking, raise new ideas and debate critical and challenging issues. Influencing decision makers in government, business and the community by delivering objective information and expert analysis and advocating in support of our positions. CEDA's membership spans every state and territory and includes Australia's leading businesses, community organisations, government departments and academic institutions. The organisation was founded in 1960 by leading economist Sir Douglas Copland, and his legacy of applying economic analysis to practical problems to aid the development of Australia continues as we celebrate 60 years of influence, reform and impact across the nation.;