What do employers do,train or

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Media Issue Analysis Over the past ten to twenty years, technology has improved dramatically. With these vast improvements in technology, there has become a greater emphasis on technology skills by employers when looking to fill their vacancies, as these skills generally are vital in any industry. To obtain these skills, most students are now staying at school longer to obtain their VCE (or equivalent qualification), as this is a minimum requirement for the majority of jobs. Furthermore, greater numbers are then gaining tertiary qualifications to enhance their skills, and ultimately, their job prospects. This shift in qualifications has revolutionised the way schools and universities are teaching their students, with a major focus being Information Technology (IT) skills, and how they are necessary in most industries. However this raises the question as to what employers are to do with their current staff. Retrain them or just simply hire new staff already equipped with the necessary skills? 1999 Telstra Business Woman of the Year, Sheryle Moon, has recently criticised Australia's level of IT skills.

She stated that "companies need to train unskilled workers themselves rather than wait for university graduates to filter into the workplace" (Warning on IT skills crisis, Herald-Sun August 10th, 1999), otherwise we face an IT skills shortage. Ms Moon said the demand far outweighed supply and that IT was "no longer something that affects just a few people, it affects every single one of us". Furthermore, she likened the current crisis to that of the 1950's Snowy Mountain Scheme, where new immigrants solved the labour shortage. However this would not work this time, as the rest of the world also faces a similar problem to Australia.

So how can companies make up for this shortage in IT skilled workers? One possible solution suggested by Ms Moon was...