Australia needs to elevate its local tech industry and build sovereign capacity to ensure local systems and data are resilient against the next ‘Black Swan’ event whether that may be a cyber security incident or a pandemic.
US President Joe Biden’s announcement of a Made in America office to drive a “America First” government procurement policy in strategic industries is also an example Australia needs to follow.
That’s the message that Ed Chung, CEO of Australia’s leading enterprise software as a service (SaaS) company TechnologyOne, is urging the Federal Government to consider, as it decides where to invest billions of dollars in IT procurement.
“The Federal Government has taken a strong stance in investing in local vaccine manufacturing for the protection of all Australians. They’ve taken a strong stance in recognising the value of locally written Australian news content,” Mr Edward Chung said.
“Now, more than ever, it’s in the nation’s best interests to not only invest in, but also adopt our own, secure and reliable Australian-led technology solutions and industry as well.
“When TechnologyOne was founded in 1987, the phrase ‘no-one ever got fired for buying IBM’ was a truism in business technology circles. The implication was the imported product was inherently better and investing in the products of local businesses was a risk,” he said.
“But Australia is now light years ahead of where it was. We now have a healthy and booming tech industry, well paid jobs and great career paths for our best and brightest tech experts and innovators. In the last decade STEM has become high profile and technology stocks make up a significant proportion of our listed companies.
“Yet as a nation we are still highly dependent on the products and services of foreign multinationals – particularly when it comes to software. This dependency is unnecessary, but it may be risky too,” Mr Chung said.
“When you look at the EU’s recent rule change, which allows exports of COVID vaccines to be stopped it there is a local supply shortfall, this ability to stand on our own two feet, or to have strong ‘sovereign capacity and capability’ – has become more important than ever.
“Indeed, last year, when our Health Minister Hunt announced plans to build the largest flu vaccine manufacturing plant in the southern hemisphere right here in Australia, he said the decision ‘locked in Australia’s sovereign vaccine manufacturing capability for the next two decades …’
“It’s time to lock in Australia’s sovereign technology capabilities as well – and the role and impact of government procurement is critical,” Mr Chung said.
TechnologyOne is Australia’s leading enterprise software company, with a strong history in supporting and servicing the government sector. Last year, it became the only global enterprise software solution to earn ‘IRAP PROTECTED’ security assessment, dramatically raising the cyber security posture of more than 40 Federal Government agencies at no additional cost to the government.
For more information about TechnologyOne visit: www.technologyonecorp.com