Fujitsu Australia CTO Craig Baty has advised the service provider's human resources and finance teams on workplace IT trends as the company prepares to recruit locally.
Speaking at an AIIA meeting last week, Baty said the company expected to hire 1,000 staff and long-term contractors in the next 18 months.
Half of those would replace departing employees, while 500 newly created positions would support recent deals with NBN Co and customers in the government and banking sectors.
Baty said Fujitsu had 5,000 staff in Australia and New Zealand, where it had a typical attrition rate of 10 percent.
He expected Fujitsu to seek administration, marketing, engineering, project management and sales staff, with an increasing focus on creative and analytical approaches to “conversational data mining” as the market for cloud services grew.
“We’re growing,” he said. “The challenge is to find people who have the skills we need in the future.”
Commencing late last year, the former analyst conducted a “number of workshops” for Fujitsu’s human resources and finance teams about industry trends and how they may affect hiring and the workplace.
Citing reports by McCrindle, Gartner, and the media, Baty identified four categories of technology users: digital natives; immigrants; slaves; and refugees.
“At a younger level – generations X, Y, and Z – the computer is becoming central to everything they do,” he told iTnews. “At the other end, the workplace is ageing.”
“It’s not like all of a sudden, you’re going to hire all of Gen Y in a day … we’re still hiring people in their 60s and we hire a lot of people in their 50s.”
“It’s a pretty even split of who’s there to employ,” he noted, but “over a period of time, [the challenge] is about how to get hold of Gen X, Y, and Z in a skills shortage.”
Baty mused that younger workers would likely demand a wider range technology options, including the ability to choose their own workplace machines.
He warned AIIA meeting attendees of the ‘consumerisation’ of enterprise IT, with workers demanding access to the corporate network via their tablet, smartphone and laptop devices.
Gen Y workers, born in the 1980s to mid-90s, expected an "always-on" world in which the answer to any question was only ever "three clicks away", he said.
“[Younger workers have] set themselves an expectation … [but] the technology they have at home far surpasses what they need in the office.
“There’s an attitudinal issue,” he said.
Australian organisations have faced the so-called ‘BYO Computing’ trend with varying degrees of enthusiasm.
Legal firm Norton Rose, for example, currently supports the connection of personal mobile devices to its information systems and is considering a future in which staff also bring in laptops and other PCs.
Jetstar allows employee-owned iPhones, iPads and MacBooks to co-exist with enterprise hardware on its network.
Meanwhile, Suncorp has reportedly decided not to refresh its fleet of 20,000 PCs in favour of a fully virtualised, BYO Computing program.
Baty predicted that Australian enterprises would begin offering employees allowances to purchase the computing device of their choice within five years.
Fujitsu currently allowed employees to connect to its corporate network from their own devices via a secure virtual private network.
But although its BYO policy was “quite flexible, within certain guidelines”, Baty said Fujitsu was “unlikely to [offer BYO allowances] in the short term”.
“We have made significant investments in existing infrastructure,” he explained. “But there is market pressure.”
“It’s the sort of thing we’re going to put in our own planning. Giving people the capability to choose which device they’re using is a key step – and we do that.”
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Issue: 324 | February 2014
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