Talking to young people about the jobs of the future

future of jobs

How can we talk to young people about the future jobs when it’s never been more difficult to give advice or certainty around the availability of opportunities?

The learning and work environment Australia’s young people are entering now is as opaque as it’s ever been. In fact, this was one of the Business Council of Australia’s arguments in a recent review of the VET sector where it said more robust career advice for young people was clearly needed.

“The first problem is the approach potential learners take to making decisions about their future, and the lack of information available to help them make good decisions,” the BCA wrote. “This starts in schools with career counselling and the information we give young people, but is even more prevalent for adults in the labour force or looking for work who struggle to find relevant and helpful information.”

With the impact of COVID-19 on the economy, many of today’s young people find themselves finishing courses or training with more limited job opportunities available. The statistics showed that those in work (often to support study) were among the hardest hit early in the crisis. ABS data for May showed payroll jobs worked by those aged under 20 suffered the largest falls (-14.6 per cent).

Young people’s dreams are being placed on some shaky foundations – at least in the very short-term. They rightly want to know where the jobs are likely to be found today as well as tomorrow.

But can we answer? Mega-trends like automation and globalisation are already sweeping through the world of work. They are leading to change that is significant, fast-paced and unpredictable.

With a range of predictions about what impact these forces might have in the coming years, young people can be forgiven for experiencing a lot of doubt, anxiety and insecurity about the future.

Is there a way we can talk to young people about the jobs of the future?


The beginning is not the end

Listen to Year13 founder Saxon Phipps’ full interview with ReadyTech CEO Marc Washbourne about the jobs of the future at the recent 2020 Careers Expo.

Year13 is one organisation that tries to make sense of the options available to young people. At its recent 2020 Digital Careers Expo, ReadyTech CEO Marc Washbourne shared his own career story, from his entrepreneurial beginnings mowing lawns at age 15 to heading an ASX-listed tech company.

His advice? “The beginning is not the end.”

While it’s a very challenging time to be thinking about a future career or entering the workforce, Marc told Year13’s audience that with a patient, long-term approach to learning and work, young people could be confident of finding genuinely fulfilling careers in the years to come. “COVID-19 has thrown a spanner in the works… but we will recover and there is a lot to be optimistic about.”

Amid the uncertainty, Marc said there are some certainties young people can use to guide them.


Expect the unpredictable

A lot of careers progress in highly unpredictable ways. While our culture often promotes the idea of linear journeys of learning and work progress via a single career choice, in many cases, those who have found fulfilling work have had ‘messy’ and meandering paths that involved falling into unexpected areas of work. Sometimes involving failure, ultimately they can end up exploring interests and talents and using those experiences to hone in on things they are good at and enjoy.

“I studied History at university,” Marc said. “You might ask how did a guy who studied history end up running a technology company? It seems quite random, but that is quite common in many people’s career paths. In the first few years, young people are layering experiences; you can start to understand what you’re good at and what you enjoy, what your strengths are, what you have a passion for, and once you have that it will be recognised in others.”


Fine tune the 4 C’s

The first few years of any working life should be about trying things out rather than landing that high-paying job right away, Marc argues. Part of that will be learning and flexing the ‘four C’s’, or those more human skills that are likely to continue to be highly translatable and transferable across industries and different workplaces in the future. Carrying the four C’s – creativity, critical thinking, collaboration and communication – will allow young people to bring valuable employability skills with them in addition to technical knowledge that will support them in the future of work.

“We are seeing the continual rise of more computerisation and that is taking some of the tasks and the jobs that we were doing previously. As a result, we are seeing employers increasingly looking for human skills that computers can’t perform and they will be among the most sought after skills in the future. With technology changing things so fast, we need those creative people, those critical thinkers, to help manage that change – and the technology is not going to go away,” Marc said.


Bring a (positive) attitude

As an extension to human skills, the right attitude can help young people improve their employment prospects in the short and long-term in a competitive world. Though there may be less opportunities available, the willingness to put themselves forward with a positive approach and seek out new work experiences – even through volunteering – are signs that they have what it takes to make it in paid employment. While no one is entitled to a job, the right attitude can go a long way to ensuring young people make the most of opportunities.

“We take a range of people in at ReadyTech – in our customer service team on our support desks for example, they could have a range of qualifications, including in VET. We value people who have done some work experience placements, internships or volunteering – I think that shows really great promise in that young person. We look for a positive attitude, a can-do attitude. People who are willing to take the initiative, go the extra mile. There is some competition out there and you have to stand out, so being positive and having a good attitude is the trait I would value the most.”


Identify your strengths and passions

The word “passion” can get overused at times, but it is a crucial element in individuals finding work that sustains them both financially and with meaning and purpose over time. By experimenting with work opportunities that both pay the bills and integrate some elements of their strengths or their interests, or even cultivating a passion, young people are more likely to experience a state of flow, be curious about their work and love what they do, which will help them excel in their careers.

“I tell my kids who are 13 and 10 to be curious and ask questions – I think that’s really important.  I think that the ability to engage in lifelong learning is a fundamental trait, and I encourage them it’s important to continue to learn. I would also push them to follow passions that play to their strengths and their purpose – when you work to your strengths you get into a state of flow and it doesn’t feel like you’re working, time flies. As they say, if you love your job you’ll never work another day in your life.”


The future is out there

There will be a lot of opportunities for today’s young people in the workforce. Even if COVID-19 has changed the landscape in ways that may make it more difficult to get a start or move forward in the short-term, the Australian economy will continue to yield new opportunities in the years to come. However, worrying probably won’t solve anything, and Marc suggests that just by getting out there, asking for opportunities, you might be surprised what will come back.

“Don’t worry. The things I was worried about at 18 or when I left university at 21 seemed incredibly important at the time, but looking back, they are a lot less important. Don’t worry what peers and others think about your chosen career path – you have to choose the career because it is for you. Follow your gut instincts and you will find your place in the world, and when it gets hard, keep going – challenging times are good times to flex your muscles and become better,” Marc said.


Listen to the full interview with ReadyTech’s Marc Washbourne on Jobs of the Future now – click here.

NEAS endorses JR Plus for international student management

NEAS, a leader in Australian international education quality assurance, has endorsed ReadyTech Student Management System JR Plus for use across Pathways, ELICOS and CRICOS education.

ReadyTech’s Student Management System, JR Plus, has become the only Student Management System to be endorsed by quality assurance body NEAS for use in Australian international education.

NEAS is the peak body for quality assurance in Australian English Language Teaching (ELT), where it seeks to establish and uphold high education and service standards across international education.

JR Plus was recently reviewed by NEAS under its Quality Assurance Framework, a matrix that assessed the end-to-end capabilities and service offered by JR Plus in international education.

The NEAS assessment concluded with an official endorsement of JR Plus, citing benefits including the system’s adaptability, market-specific features, ISO 27001-level security and strategic focus.

“NEAS would like to congratulate ReadyTech on achieving NEAS Quality Endorsement of JR Plus, an international student management software system for Pathways, ELICOS and CRICOS providers.

Elicos student management system
JR Plus – International student management software for Pathways, ELICOS and CRICOS providers.

“Their product is an all-in-one solution, which eliminates multiple competing software and creates a solution for their client of exceptional quality,” the NEAS endorsement to its members says.

NEAS added that the integration of research, analysis and ‘state-of-the-art’ software design into the JR Plus student management demonstrated the high quality solution it provided for clients.

JR Plus is the only Student Management System that is officially endorsed by NEAS against the Quality Assurance Framework for use by providers of international education in Australia.

 “ReadyTech is pioneering many exciting developments in international education technology, all focused on evolving student management and student experiences for a brand new decade,” said Trevor Fairweather, ReadyTech’s General Manger of Student Management Systems.

“We’re delighted to receive this official quality endorsement from NEAS. While we’re in the midst of a challenging time in international education, we look forward to working with the Pathways, ELICOS and CRICOS community to support quality international offerings into the future.”

Apprentice of the Year a firm believer in value of skills

ACT Apprentice of the year 2019

The winner of last year’s ReadyTech ACT Apprentice of the Year Award is still benefitting from ongoing learning and the transferability of his skills across building and construction.

When James White won the 2019 ReadyTech ACT Apprentice of the Year Award a year ago, he was an apprentice carpenter who believed he might one day start his own carpentry business.

With a passion for building, carpentry and woodworking, he was working towards a Certificate III in Carpentry at the Canberra Institute of Technology while learning on the job with ACTPRO Group.

But in the fast-changing world of work a lot can change in a year.

James now has a new role, a new employer and some brand new goals. What hasn’t changed is his foundational belief in the value of continual learning and the skills you pick up along the way.

“My experience is primarily with construction-based apprenticeships, but what I’ve seen there is that those skills I’ve learned tend to be applicable in a lot of different industries,” James says.


Moving on up 

James is now a site supervisor with ACT Steelworks. Headhunted from his fully-qualified carpentry role at ACTPRO after 4 months, he is now responsible for managing a team of six on anything from major structural steel installations, to steel fences, bollards, balustrades and other construction-related steelworks.

While the timber structures he used to work with could support a couple of tonnes, James is now more likely to find himself in the middle of Canberra supervising a crane lifting steel beams that weigh in at nine tonnes, and that are destined to support a full 200 tonnes of concrete.

“The stuff I’m doing at the moment is really enjoyable for me. It’s something different and I never really like to stop learning. When you start working with things like those big steel beams, doing crane work and working on elevated platforms and boom lifts, it makes things really interesting.”

James says his carpentry background and other skills have proved invaluable.

“There’s been some challenges where my carpentry skills have really helped,” James explains. “I tend to get put on the jobs where we’re not quite sure how it will work, or what the outcome should be; the jobs where how we are going to get there requires some thought.”

For example, James has made the decision to use timber structures creatively on some jobs to support part of a construction so that work on the site could continue. “There’s been a number of jobs where I’ve had to do that – think outside the box,” he said.


Living to learn

James is a firm believer in the value of learning and skills. Prior to his apprenticeship, he had already completed a Bachelor of Systems Engineering and a Diploma in Leadership and Management, while getting hands-on experience in the field in maintenance, carpentry and managing people.

This attitude fits right in at ACT Steelworks. Supported by a strong learning culture, James has already accrued a number of trade tickets that are making him more skilled across the breadth of his role, including rigging and scaffolding, working in confined spaces and crane driving.

“ACT Steelworks is all about professional development. If we come across a problem we can’t solve, our boss’ mentality is ‘we need training’. We always have people doing courses,” James says.

“Since I’ve been here, I’ve also done tickets in excavating machine equipment – like bobcats. I was never actually qualified in those, and now I’m their primary machine operator as well.”


The past is the future 

James considered launching his own carpentry business last year but opted for the opportunities on offer at ACT Steelworks. While he still does private carpentry jobs on the weekends, he believes that building and construction project management could be where his role eventually takes him.

He encouraged apprentices or those considering one to realise the value of skills.

“The skills you learn – at least in building and construction – are applicable to a lot of different industries,” he says. “For example, the skills I bring from carpentry apply in the steel fabrication and fixing industry. Different skill sets can actually be very valuable – bosses like it,” he said.

Finishing a qualification – and being able to offer the skills that come with it – immediately boosts employability, because it shows a person is able to stick it out. James says they’ll also be able to carry that with them into the future.

“The good thing is that once you’ve got a trade it’s yours – no one can take it from you.”

ReadyTech is a lsupporter of the ACT Training Awards and a sponsor of the ACT Apprentice of the Year Award since 2017. For more information, click here.

ReadyTech to celebrate skills in the ACT, Tasmania

ReadyTech will join the ACT and Tasmanian VET industries in celebrating workforce skilling success as a sponsor of this year’s Australian Training Awards.

ReadyTech will sponsor the ACT Training Awards for a fifth year in 2020 and extend its national involvement to include the Training Awards in Tasmania to support vocational education (VET).

ReadyTech has been a long-term participant in the annual ACT Training Awards celebration, where it has been a platinum sponsor of the ACT Apprentice of the Year Award since 2017.

Together with its VETtrak Student Management System, ReadyTech will also sponsor the Tasmanian Training Awards this year, where it will present the Training Provider of the Year Award.

“The Training Awards recognise the inspirational effort and achievement happening every day around Australia in vocational education and training,” said Trevor Fairweather, ReadyTech General Manager of Student Management Systems.

“ReadyTech systems are very much a part of the fabric of vocational education in the ACT and Tasmania, so we’re honoured to be contributing towards showcasing best practice and success.”

The Training Awards will be held on 10 September in the ACT and in October in Tasmania.

ReadyTech to support future of employment services with NESA partnership

ReadyTech has become an official Industry Partner of the National Employment Services Association (NESA), the peak body for Australia’s employment services industry.

ReadyTech has joined forces with the National Employment Services Association as an official Industry Partner, to support the employment services industry and peak body in its ongoing efforts to provide the dignity of work to job seekers right across Australia.

NESA is the peak body for employment services providers in Australia. It helps its member providers offer quality services to job seekers – including disadvantaged job seekers – so that they are able to deliver opportunities to everyone through employment and inclusion.

ReadyTech is the home of a family of technologies purpose-built for employment services. These include JR Live, a leading provider management system, and Esher House, which provides behavioural science-backed assessment, analytics and intervention technology.

Together, ReadyTech’s systems work to better enable employment services providers to achieve positive outcomes for job seekers and their employers. As a result, ReadyTech is deeply committed to supporting the industry’s ongoing evolution and success.

ReadyTech CEO Marc Washbourne said the employment services market had worked hard to evolve the service it provided to job seekers, making Australia into a global leader in the provision of employment services that achieved real work outcomes for participants.

“ReadyTech, through JobReady and Esher House, have invested over the long-term in building the efficacy of the employment services industry through innovation, so it can continue to do the very important work of supporting more Australians into work.

“Being a NESA Industry Partner is a symbol of the foundational relationship we have with the industry. While it faces unique circumstances right now, we are firmer than ever in our conviction that technology will support providers in their aims now, and in the future.”

NESA CEO Sally Sinclair welcomed ReadyTech as a new Industry Partner for the future. “We look forward to working together to advance NESA’s member services,” she said.

About ReadyTech:

ReadyTech (ASX:RDY) is the leading Australian provider of technologies for managing the complex human journey through study, work and between-work transitions. Bringing together the best in student management, apprenticeship management, payroll and HR administration, employment services and behavioural science technology, ReadyTech supports the development and success of tomorrow’s workforce. 

For more information contact:

Ben Abbott
Communications Lead
+61 468 787 803


ReadyTech expands senior leadership with new Head of Education

ReadyTech (ASX: RDY) has announced the appointment of a new leader of its education technology business, to spearhead further growth and innovation across Australia’s tertiary education technology sector.

James Diamond joins ReadyTech in the newly created role from US-based advertising tech company Integral Ad Science where, as Managing Director Australia and New Zealand he successfully launched, built and led the group’s regional operations over the last six years.

As Chief Executive, Education, James will head ReadyTech’s education technology business, which services Australia’s TAFE, vocational education and training (VET), higher education, apprenticeships and back to work sectors.

James will lead the high performing teams responsible for education technology products including Student Management Systems JR Plus and VETtrak, skills profiling application My Profiling and student behavioural science and predictive analytics from Esher House.

ReadyTech CEO Marc Washbourne said: “James shares our vision for the central role both education and technology will play for learners, educators and businesses in the future of work.

“ReadyTech technology is present in sectors critical for skilling Australia’s future workforce, and we see this new role as a significant investment to meet the enormous opportunity to influence and lead on that.

“As Chief Executive, Education, James will bring further momentum to our sales and marketing enterprise strategy which is attracting larger education institutions to our highly agile and student-centric SaaS platform. He will also drive the creation of additional value for our SME clients, who rely on us to support enhancements to the student lifecycle and help to deliver better student outcomes.”

Chief Executive, Education James Diamond said: “I look forward to contributing to the strong partnerships ReadyTech has forged with clients across the education sector.

“ReadyTech’s suite of technologies and vision for the future of work and education represent a unique opportunity to assist education providers to better meet student and employer needs. I’m looking forward to being a part of what has been a true customer-led growth story and to working with the ReadyTech team and clients to provide a roadmap fit for the future.”

For more information:

Ben Abbott
Communications Lead
+61 468 787 803

About ReadyTech: ReadyTech (ASX:RDY) is a leading Australian provider of SaaS technology for educators and employers managing the complex human journey through study, work and career transitions. Bringing together the best in student management, apprenticeship management, payroll and HR admin, employment services and behavioural science technology, ReadyTech support’s the development and success of tomorrow’s workforce.

Our Intelligent Online Learning Future with Dan Fish


The WorkED Podcast – Our Intelligent Online Learning Future

The world of online and digital learning has taken on new importance during COVID-19. With the need for educators and organisations to migrate learning offerings from face-to-face to online, there’s been a rush to understand the ‘how’ of getting content to students to keep businesses running.

​​But what about the ‘why’? Where does online delivery fit in the future of work beyond the immediate needs of now?

​​GO1’s Daniel Fish has spent years working at the nexus of learning and work. As Strategy Director at online learning platform GO1 (after gaining a privileged view of the learning imperative at jobs platform SEEK), Dan has experienced how learning and the future of work can co-exist in online content technology.

      • ​​What if you had the learning you need at any stage of your career when you needed it? 
      • ​​What if this learning technology knew your interests and career aspirations as well as you do, and could filter a world of offerings to bring you the optimal learning to upskill and reskill?
      • ​​What if learning and work were connected as part of a natural ‘flow’?

​​Join Marc Washbourne and Dan Fish on WorkED as they explore the intelligent future of online learning beyond COVID-19.

worked podcast

The Age of The Employer-Employee Alliance with Daniel Cohen Flare HR


The WorkED Podcast – The Age of The Employer-Employee Alliance

Master-servant-style employer-employee relationships are a hangover from times past. Though many employers hold on to the vestiges of traditional workplace cultures, the reality is they are fast being replaced by a much closer and more fruitful partnership between employers and employees.

Will the future see what co-founder of LinkedIn Reid Hoffman has termed The Alliance?

CEO of Flare HR, Dan Cohen, certainly thinks so. A leading thinker and practitioner in the world of employee engagement, he sits down with Marc Washbourne on WorkED to define the alliance and explore the potential of this partnership model for employers and employees alike in the future of work.

Tackling the vanishing borders between work and life, the death of lifetime employment in favour of shorter term ‘tours of duty’ and the growing role of employers in areas as diverse as financial and mental health, as well as skills development, Dan explains why future careers are a ‘drunkard’s walk’.

Will future employees be more like the free agents we know today in soccer or baseball? How can they be engaged in one – or multiple – tours of duty for the mutual benefit of the employer and the employee? And how can we ensure we’re being ‘cool, not creepy’ in our use of employee data?

This fascinating reimagining of the employer-employee relationship is essential listening for business leaders and managers.


worked podcast

The year Michael Sena, Australia and HR3 said ‘I do’

In the year same-sex marriage was made legal ReadyTech’s payroll and workforce management business HR3 was delighted to celebrate the happiness of one of its own. We spoke with HR3’s Michael Sena about the day he’d been waiting 28 years for.

When HR3’s customer relationship manager Michael Sena went to a wedding expo in the first half of 2018 with his partner Paul, they felt out of place being one of the only same-sex couples in the crowd. 

With Australia having only voted ‘yes’ to marriage equality in November 2017 (followed soon after by the Marriage Equality Act) the reality of same-sex marriage in Australia was still very new.

“We picked a lot of vendors from the expo. With everyone I spoke to, I felt I always had to start off by asking if same-sex marriage was an issue for them,” Michael says. “I said I have to ask, because if it’s an issue for you it’s an issue for me, and I don’t want to put you in an awkward position.”

Michael was thrilled that the response from vendors at the expo – and from the community, his friends, and his colleagues ever since  – has been nothing short of enthusiastic and supportive.

“The response from the expo vendors that day always was, ‘why would it be an issue for me’? No one had any issues with it at all. The limo driver we hired was absolutely rapt!”

ReadyTech’s HR3 team was thrilled to celebrate with Michael. In early 2018, we sat down to ask him about the people and the politics of his story – and of course the big party he’d been waiting 28 years for.

Q&A: Michael Sena, Customer Relationship Manager, HR3

How did you and your husband meet?

I first met my husband Paul in December­­­­­­­­ 1989 – 29 years ago now – at a mutual friend’s dinner party. We had our first official date on New Year’s Eve in ‘89, and 28 years later we got married.

Was it ever challenging being in a same-sex relationship?

Definitely. Paul’s 11 years older than me and his family has accepted him for quite a while, but I’m from a Catholic Italian background, so it was a little bit strange for my family. For the first 10 years of our relationship Paul wasn’t invited or involved in any of my family gatherings. 

I was pleased when, one year out of the blue, my mother rang me and said, “Why don’t you bring your friend over for Christmas?”. I said of course. From that point on, he was accepted and he’s just part of the family now. Not just my immediate family, but my extended family as well.

Was getting married after 28 years important to you?

The main reason we did it was to have the security behind us of being recognised as next of kin. It wasn’t politically motivated, it was because as a same-sex couple, we didn’t have the same legal rights as a married couple. For example, we had to fill in an enduring power of attorney form for financial and medical because if a decision had to be made to turn off someone’s life support, for example, neither of us would have been able to make that decision. It gives us peace of mind.

So that’s the reason we did it – and to have a big party!

How did you feel about the plebiscite process?

It was a big issue for the community at the time. I was personally very worried about it – at the time I actually posted on Facebook that if anyone was going to vote ‘no’ in the postal vote then please unfriend me because it just means you don’t have any respect for me. None did, which was great.

It worried me because if it didn’t happen we’d still be in the same position and there’s no guarantee Labor will win the next election. It could have been quite a few years before anything happened again. My view is it shouldn’t have been done; Malcolm Turnbull should have just made a captain’s call and passed it. To ask the Australian people if we should be given equal rights is just a ridiculous notion to me. But there wasn’t anything we could do, and the good came out of it in the end.

What was it like hearing Australia voted ‘yes’?

I was driving around all that day – I didn’t even have the radio on, so I didn’t know what had happened. It was Paul who messaged me to say it’s a  ‘yes’, and then I started getting texts and Facebook tags from my friends overseas. It was just a really emotional day, and by the time I got home and saw Paul we were both in tears, so it was just a good day. It was a really good day.

How did you pop the question to Paul?

I proposed on Australia Day 2016, nine days after my 50th birthday. We were in Paris, and I had it all planned – the ring and everything – for months. The last day in Paris was the only blue sky day for the whole four days we were there, and I proposed to him on top of the Eiffel Tower.

Were you confident marriage equality would happen?

The word at the time was that marriage equality was going to happen and the election was not far around the corner. Bill Shorten had promised that, should Labor get into power, they would pass the Marriage Equality Act within the first 100 days. That didn’t happen as we know.

Friends were saying, “Why don’t you go to New Zealand and get married?”. But it wasn’t the same, because it wouldn’t have been recognised in Australia. So we just waited and waited and when the postal vote came back with a ‘yes’, there were a few tears and a few glasses of champagne.

You were married on August 4th. Was it one of the first same-sex weddings?

There’s been over 5000 same-sex weddings now in Australia and over 1000 in Victoria since the law passed, but we were pretty much the first same-sex couple with all the providers we used. Our celebrant, the limo driver, the reception venue, the band – we were their first same-sex wedding.

So how did the ‘big party’ turn out on your wedding day?

We went to a venue in Richmond on the Yarra called Fenix Events. We were the first same-sex couple to get married there – they’d had some commitment ceremonies, but not a marriage ceremony. It was just fun – the party was the best day of our lives. It was amazing,  more than we expected. Our friends are still talking about it – they keep asking when we’re getting married again. 

It wasn’t huge – we had 70 people including the wedding party. To give you a flavour of that, that included our ‘proxy son’ as we call him as our best man, my niece as maid of honour, my godson as groomsman, Paul’s goddaughter as ‘groomsmaid’ as we call them, and my youngest niece and nephew as junior groomsman and flower girl. It was just brilliant, it was the best night ever.

Have your work colleagues been supportive?

I’ve had no issues at all. When I started at HR3 seven and a half years ago for example,  I put Paul’s name down as my partner and there was never any negative feedback from anyone. It’s been really positive – I don’t feel like I have to pretend to be someone I’m not. I don’t flaunt it obviously, because I’m just not that sort of person. I’m just who I am and our team is fine with that. 

When I had my last day of work before the wedding, I wasn’t expecting anything but Rick [Verloop] made a really nice speech and gave us a present. I had to stop opening the card because I was getting quite emotional about it. I’m just grateful that HR3 has been so supportive.

How have the clients you deal with taken the news? 

Some of the clients I deal with knew I was getting married, and when I’ve gone to see them and they’ve asked if I had any wedding photos on my phone, nobody has ever had any issues with it when I’ve shown them. It’s been really positive, which is a good feeling. 

I had one client when I was in Sydney a couple of months ago who had a son getting married, and I told her that I’d been with my partner for 28 years and just got married. She said, “What took you so long?”. I said, “Marriage equality.” She said, “Riiiight. Well, it’s about time!”

So what’s next for you and Paul?

We haven’t had our honeymoon yet, so we’re planning to go away in February 2019. Because it’s been a really hectic year for us, we decided we’re just going to go away and do nothing. Thailand is our place for doing that, so our plan is to be there for two weeks on a beach doing nothing.

Other than that, the future is just what it is; it’s just going to carry on as normal. Paul is hopefully going to retire or semi-retire soon, so our plan is just to keep living the life we are living. Nothing is going to change as far as that goes; it’s just that now, we have the security and comfort of knowing nothing is going to stop us from making decisions for each other, because it is the law now.


Bendigo TAFE and Kangan Institute select ReadyTech as new Student Management Technology Partner


Bendigo TAFE and Kangan Institute select ReadyTech as new Student Management Technology Partner
ReadyTech CEO Marc Washbourne and Bendigo Kangan Institute CEO Sally Curtain.


For immediate release: Victorian TAFEs Bendigo TAFE and Kangan Institute, which are trading brands of Bendigo Kangan Institute, have named ReadyTech Student Management System, JR Plus, as the chosen technology platform to evolve student experience for a brand new decade.

The cornerstone of an organisation-wide student journey transformation project, JR Plus will be introduced across Bendigo TAFE and Kangan Institute as the core platform for managing the end-to- end student lifecycle.

Both TAFEs will leverage the advanced cloud and platform capabilities of JR Plus, ReadyTech’s proven experience in Vocational Education and Training (VET) as well as an agile software approach to build on their leading offering for Victorian students. ReadyTech currently supports over 1,400 VET providers with its market leading Student Management Systems including Builders Academy, DeakinCo. and the Australian Institute of Personal Trainers.

The JR Plus Student Management System is expected to streamline management of the student journey from enrolment to completion.

When fully implemented, JR Plus will manage an expected 40,000 enrolled students annually across multiple cohorts at Bendigo TAFE and Kangan Institute’s 10 campuses in Melbourne and Victoria and be used by more than 800 staff.

The decision to select ReadyTech followed a rigorous evaluation and procurement exercise across the Student Management System market.

Bendigo TAFE and Kangan Institute CEO Sally Curtain said:

“This is a very exciting time for Bendigo TAFE and Kangan Institute. The implementation of JR Plus is an important part of our student journey transformation to improve and transform the student experience, staff practices and processes and improve governance and compliance across both TAFEs.

“After participating in a demonstration of JR Plus, I am confident this will ensure we achieve our key strategic objectives of being a more digital institution, with easier and more enjoyable touch points for students and staff.”

ReadyTech CEO, Marc Washbourne, said the partnership was an endorsement of ReadyTech’s advanced and adaptive technology and proven track record in the Australian higher education and VET sector.

“ReadyTech is the home of cloud-based Student Management System, JR Plus, that is purpose-built to support the complex and evolving needs of Australia’s enterprise-level tertiary education providers.

“We are confident that, in ReadyTech, Bendigo TAFE and Kangan Institute have chosen a technology partner that can support their ambitious vision both now and into the future,” Washbourne said.

The ASX-listed ReadyTech has provided Student Management System services to higher education and vocational education and training (VET) providers in Australia for over 20 years and is compliant with AVETMISS reporting in every state.

“We are particularly pleased that Bendigo TAFE and Kangan Institute recognised the value in an agile technology platform and project approach that can respond with flexibility to the requirements of staff and students.

“We look forward to working in partnership with Bendigo TAFE and Kangan Institute to deliver a leading 21st century student experience and playing a role in changing the lives of Victoria’s VET students for the better.”

Download the full announcement here:

Bendigo TAFE and Kangan Institute select ReadyTech as new Student Management Technology Partner (PDF 153kB)
29 January 2020


About ReadyTech and JobReady: ReadyTech (ASX:RDY) is a leading Australian provider of SaaS technology for educators and employers managing the complex human journey through study, work and career transitions. ReadyTech provides people management software to over 4,200 educators, employers and facilitators of work transitions. Bringing together the best in student management, apprenticeship management, payroll and HR admin, employment services and behavioural science technology, ReadyTech support’s the development and success of tomorrow’s workforce.

About Bendigo TAFE and Kangan Institute: Bendigo TAFE and Kangan Institute, which are trading brands of Bendigo Kangan Institute, are leading providers of vocational education, operating across multiple campuses in Victoria and committed to providing high-quality education and training that lead to real employment opportunities. With more than 40,000 student enrolments annually at 10 metropolitan and regional campuses; onshore and offshore sites, both TAFEs impact the next steps in the careers of individuals locally and internationally. Bendigo TAFE and Kangan Institute offer over 300 courses in areas including automotive and trades, business and IT, food and fibre, hair and beauty, health and community services, creative, culinary and hospitality, travel and tourism as well as Indigenous and foundation courses.