The Liberal party's innovation campaign is a great one. Everyone knows that the resource boom has gone and our economic success will now depend on doing something different.
Unfortunately, whilst we have great ideas, we definitely don’t have the manpower to implement all the tech ideas we have. So what do we do?
During the resources boom, the mining companies used the 457 visa and literally bought in thousands of professionals to boost the workforce. It worked well and the mining industry boomed as we know.
So can we do that again, and bring in large swags of tech savvy professionals and developers? Yes, it's an option, however, it’s also an expensive business (as you know).
An alternative is to use those skills overseas. Technology, somewhat ironically, allows it. Communication enhancing tech has grown in leaps and bounds over the last five years. Think Skype (video), Slack and Jira to name a few.
Ah, you say, but “What about culture and maintaining the right standards?” After all, “Our developers are much better.” Really? I actually thought it was a numbers game. More developers in the pool equal better outcomes.
We’ve got to be more global because our ideas are fantastic. We have a culture that questions everything, which is kind of handy in the brave new world of Apps and AI, but we just don’t have the numbers.
We have to get better at building distributed teams, tapping into the best minds, and using globalisation to our advantage.
Or, should we turn inwards as China did? Let’s not forget what happened to them.