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It’s Time for an Innovation Agenda – State Election 09 February 26, 2009

Posted by Glenn Irvine in Advocacy, Blog, Futuring.
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Queensland has been launched into a snap State election, and the local IT Industry is feeling a little left out of not only the campaign policy platforms by the major parties, but the broader infrastructure dialogue happening at a National level.

There are some clear opportunities that could be picked up by either side of politics, and some simple line items that have been a thorn in the side of the High Technology industries in this state can be easily addressed.

In simple terms, an Innovation Agenda for Queensland could address the following Policy items with ease:

  1. Publish and Release the State Owned Broadband Fibre Network for shared Commercial use by Queensland Companies
  2. Establish a Queensland-based Innovation Precinct with significant Regionally competitive Tax Benefits for High Technology Companies. (IT, Media, Biotech, Games & Hi-Tech Consumer Goods)
  3. Articulate an understanding that the Digital Economy is an integral and critical part of our State’s Infrastructure Vision & Spend, and overall Economic Focus
  4. Mandate Automation of Citizen-facing Government processes and workflows

These four simple points are relatively easy to achieve. Predominantly they are more policy than having any significant funding requirement.

I have often hit the roadblock that automating government processes can cost jobs, but that is 5 year old public sector thinking, and most government departments are under-resourced. Surely the automated efficiencies gained, allows these departments to better utilise what current resources they have.

I’m amazed that at a Federal level, at least, the recent proposed Stimulus Package addresses not one element of Broadband Infrastructure and therefore no significant infrastructure element that supports Australia’s Digital Economy.

It is like we are “Building Railways while all around us other nations are assembling Boeing 747s”

I’d be intrigued to see what the parties come up with for their ICT Policy platforms, and I know the three local industry associations (Software Queensland, AIIA, and the ACS) don’t intend on us hitting the election next month without having these detailed.


Glenn Irvine

Interview on Radio 4BC: Local Web Development February 17, 2009

Posted by Glenn Irvine in Advocacy, Blog, Commentary, Interview, Media.
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I was interviewed on our local Brisbane News/Talk radio station (4BC) today on a topic that is becoming more prevalent these days. Buying locally.

In this case, our State Premier has launched a campaign website on the weekend, as the pundits believe she is heading for an early election, and used Web Developers in the southern Australian States for the work.

Interestingly, the website talks a fair bit about protecting Queensland Jobs, and the host of the Drive program at 4BC, Mike Smith, who has a strong IT background, posited that the Premier should be looking to protect some of those Queensland Jobs in the IT Sector.

I was asked to comment as the spokesperson for Software Queensland, which, logically would be supporting the use of local web development companies for this type of work.

You can hear the interview with “Smithy” here.


Glenn Irvine

Stats on Social Computing Technologies & Organisations looking for Vista Alternatives February 10, 2009

Posted by Glenn Irvine in Advocacy, Analysts, Blog, Commentary, Survey.
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In recent days there have been a few interesting stats about the common Social Computing technologies such as Facebook, My Space, LinkedIn, Flickr etc.

These include the following diagram that highlights use of these technologies by Gender and Age Group…


And this recent Australian survey, which I find to be very enlightening…


A recent article on Google’s GMail being poised to take over marketshare from Microsoft Hotmail was also interesting…


Glenn Irvine

Now on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/glennirvine

Media Release: Advocating Software Innovation in Recessionary Times February 8, 2009

Posted by Glenn Irvine in Advocacy, Blog, Media Release.
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Here is a sneak preview of a Media Release I will be distributing on the weekend, in my role on the Board of Software Queensland.

Hopefully, we will make some leeway in driving businesses to look at software initiatives in the Collaborative Space.

Software Industry Body Advocates Innovation in Recessionary Times

BRISBANE, Queensland (February 9, 2009) Australian businesses should be working on technology and process innovation now, to build a “Platform for Growth” that will boost their efficiency and enable them to enter the next economic cycle from a position of strength, advises Software Queensland, the industry advocacy association of Queensland-based Software Companies.

“During recessionary times, when many businesses are scaling back operations, they are presented with the unique opportunity of being able to focus spare capacity towards finally tackling business improvement initiatives, including the adoption of software solutions for automation, collaboration, and restructuring IT environments,” said Glenn Irvine, Secretary of Software Queensland

“While the focus is on cost reduction, investments should be made now, so efficiencies can be achieved in time for the recovery”.

Unfortunately, many companies wait for the recovery before releasing funds to look at investments in business process improvements, and miss or are unable to take full advantage of the business opportunities presented during the next economic lift.

“Simply put, now is the time to prepare that ‘Platform for Growth’, and invest in software driven initiatives that strengthens the business’ operational efficiency and competitive advantage”, Mr Irvine said.

Implementation of electronic workflow initiatives that replace paper based forms, not only save significant costs, but also aids an organisation’s Green agenda as well. Collaboration solutions save businesses’ travel and staff costs, and enable organisational growth and flexibility of working arrangements.

It may also be a time to look at the IT environment and consider the efficiencies of restructuring and possibly outsourcing various common services, like email support, or offerings that can be provided as a service (Software as a Service or SaaS).

Implementation of well established practice solutions that manage the operations of the organisation could be investigated, along with a review and potentially revitalising the business’ website.

Software Queensland members provide many of these solutions, and Queensland businesses should look at taking advantage of this current time to explore the opportunity to save costs.

“Governments, both Federal and State, that want to provide an economic stimulus should start by ‘Leading by Example’ with a Mandate for Government Agencies to Automate their many paper-based form processes,” said Mr Irvine.  “This would certainly provide a boost for the ICT Sector.”

– ENDS –

Software Queensland (www.softwareqld.com.au) is the recognised professional industry association for those companies working in the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) sector in Queensland who manufacture, licence and sell their own intellectual property. Software Queensland seeks to raise awareness of the ICT industry and represent its member’s views to government, industry and the community. It provides both members and non-members with opportunities for professional education and networking, as well as enabling them to contribute to the development of their industry. Today the association has more than seventy member companies including national and internationally renowned ICT identities such as Microsoft, IBM, Mincom, Wotif, GBST, Technology One, Shortcuts Software, Softlink, Sundata and Eos Solutions.


Glenn Irvine