02/11/2021 - 11:54

WA can lead the Nation in the future world of work

02/11/2021 - 11:54

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WA can lead the Nation in the future world of work

Over the past 18 months, each of us has used technology to stay connected and productive during the COVID-19 pandemic. It has been a period of significant and rapid change which reinforced that future-proofing Australian businesses, government, institutions and industries has never been more important.

During this time, the Committee for Perth has been researching the predicted impacts of the fourth industrial revolution, global megatrends and COVID-19 pandemic on WA. In our The Future of Work report, we have found that WA could lead the Nation. With five key findings and 22 recommendations, being the leading State in the future of work is ours for the taking.

Our research has also found that WA can leverage the technological know-how in the mining and resources sector into other industries. Given the next wave of technology will be fuelled by artificial intelligence (AI), we recommend that collaborative research & development (R&D) centres of excellence are developed in our State as well as nationally, in sectors where WA has the capacity to build competitive advantage such as health; education; renewable energy and agri-tech.

Up until now, technology has been seen as a friend – something that makes our lives easier to manage and a tool of the trade making our work easier to do. It could, however, become a foe by displacing jobs and people. It is the very things that make us human – empathetic, collaborative, problem solvers – that set us apart from machines.

Having laid out a pathway for WA to lead the Nation in the future world of work, we are now turning our attention to positioning the workforce to meet current and future demands in Race to the Top. Through this research project, we will be examining available sources of labour supply and highlighting gaps as well as projecting industry growth and the demand for workers this will generate, and we will also look at the role of industry in shaping education and training in a changing landscape.

The urgency of preparing the workforce cannot be underestimated, hence it is a race for industry, education providers and policymakers to deliver a ready workforce. Taking a business as usual approach will result in opportunity cost and act as an economic handbrake. With WA’s economic prowess begrudgingly acknowledged ‘over East’, we need to seize the moment to continue to lead the Nation.

The Future of Work report is available for download from the Committee for Perth website.

Watch out for Race to the Top research reports bulletins due for release early next year.

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

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