GW3's Kylie Porter and Garry Scanlan at the Mackay Chamber of Commerce's Coffee and Chat event at Moss on Wood.
GW3's Kylie Porter and Garry Scanlan at the Mackay Chamber of Commerce's Coffee and Chat event at Moss on Wood. Angela Seng

How one team is tackling workforce innovation

DIGITAL technology and innovation are quickly transforming how businesses are run in the future.

Preparing the workforce for these changes would be a vital exercise for our region and a challenge the Greater Whitsunday Alliance is committed to tackling head on.

GW3 manager of development and innovation Kylie Porter warns one in five jobs in the greater Mackay region is at medium to high vulnerability as a result of automation, robotics, AI and digital technologies.

"The number one job on the list in terms of risk is accountancy, which impacts every single industry and every single business and we need to get our heads around it,” Ms Porter said as she launched ticket sales for GW3's impending Future Workforce Summit.

Ms Porter addressed the small crowd of business leaders at Moss on Wood Tuesday morning during Mackay Chamber of Commerce's Coffee and Chat event.

"The GW3 are not in the business of holding events - this will be our one and only event,” Ms Porter said.

"We have decided to hold the summit because we believe for the next two to five years there will be no more important issue facing our region than what our future workforce will need to look like.”

The Future Workforce Summit will be held on August 9 at the Mackay Entertainment Centre and feature a diverse schedule of speakers.

"You will be able to choose which events, speakers and content is relevant to you and your business,” Ms Porter said.

"We will open with a keynote presentation from global futurist Anders Sörman-Nilsson. He will speak about what is happening globally and how it applies to our region.

"There will be specific information for mining and METS, agriculture, retail and small businesses - there is literally something for everyone.”

A panel conversation will also be delivered at the summit with representatives from Hastings Deering, Downer Group, the Regional Australia Institute and the office of Queensland's Chief Entrepreneur.

"The panel will discuss what businesses will need to do remain relevant for long-term sustainability, she said.

The first portion of the summit will be live-streamed to the Isaac and Whitsunday regions.

"If you own a business it's important for you to be there. If you are a manager of a business it's important for you to be there. If you care about the future of our region it is important you to be there,” Ms Porter said.

Tickets are on sale now, visit greaterwhitsundayalliance.com.au/summit



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