Queensland-based security specialist Baidam Solutions has bolstered its workforce with the addition of four new hires of First Nations people, joining the company as security specialists.
The four university graduates were hired as part of the company's commitment through its daily business activities to “bridge the gap” of Indigenous representation in the IT Security sector, Baidam co-founder and CEO Philip Jenkinson told CRN.
He added that the company’s commitment to hiring First Nations students as graduates was based first and foremost on capability.
“Across a variety of roles and responsibilities, we've identified these Indigenous people who are capable to do what the industry expects of them and we're investing in that to build skills equity,” he said.
“If we can invest in equality and we know that someone can be assessed with equality, then we also know, if we're doing this correctly, that we can start looking at true diversity and inclusion, but with the underpinning of technical enablement.”
Capability is paramount for Baidam as the company services government and enterprise organisations in cyber security.
Jenkinson said this was an unwavering commitment for the company.
“However, by investing in that same certification pathway, or other technical pathways, we're also providing pathways of employment that, in turn, will increase financial independence.”
Jenkinson explained that the concept of financial independence was critical to First Nations people as the money they earn in these high-paying technical roles will directly benefit their families and communities across the country.
“There is a very strong correlation between financial support back to that community from the individual who has the job,” Jenkinson said.
The four new hires come after the company brought on two new First Nations graduates in 2021. Jenkinson told CRN that the company had also hired two senior executives in New South Wales, Ryan Hitchen and Brad Strauss, to support government and enterprise customers in the state.
“What we're seeing now in iterations, certainly across the New South Wales government and Queensland government, is that there is a direct correlation between procurement activity and what's now commonly referred to as building a digitally enabled workforce,” Jenkinson said.
In July 2020, the company set up a permanent scholarship with the University of Queensland to support Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students in information technology and STEM disciplines.
This was followed in April last year by a partnership between Baidam, Dvuln and the Australian National University (ANU) which saw scholarships be made available to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students in perpetuity.
This was part of ANU’s Kambri Scholars program which helps Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander students at the ANU with support systems including accommodation, financial support for return trips home, a stipend, and additional financial and pastoral support.
In August last year, the company revealed the first recipient of its scholarship at UQ, Denzel Strauss, commerce and IT student with dreams of becoming a business analyst.
Baidam Solutions is an Indigenous-owned, Supply Nation certified Information Technology business. Its vendor partners include Cisco, Palo Alto, Airlock Digital and CrowdStrike.