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Reappointment of IT supplier advocate a boost for SMEs



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Tuesday, 31 May 2011

REAPPOINTMENT OF IT SUPPLIER ADVOCATE A BOOST FOR SMEs Don Easter’s reappointment as the Information Technology Supplier Advocate will help ensure Australia’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) continue to receive assistance in taking advantage of opportunities in the government IT market.

Innovation Minister Senator Kim Carr said that the IT Supplier Advocate provides direction and support to assist SMEs succeed in the government IT market.

“As the IT Supplier Advocate, Mr Easter has provided the sector with exceptional leadership and direction,” Senator Carr said.

“In particular, he promotes the value of SMEs as innovative, flexible and customer driven service providers to government.

“Over the past year, the work of the IT Supplier Advocate has initiated practical activities to assist in raising competiveness of SMEs in the IT sector.”

Mr Easter was instrumental in striking a partnership between industry and the Australian Government Information Management Office (AGIMO), which for the first time sees a group of local SMEs promoting their IT capabilities this week as members of the Australian Government’s stand at CeBIT Sydney.

“Much work has also been carried out in the area of risk management. Partnering with the Australian Information Industry Association’s CollabIT SME Network, Mr Easter has developed a quality training course to help SMEs better address risk when tendering,” Senator Carr said

Mr Easter’s reappointment will allow him to build on achievements to date; including:

• completion of an online directory of capabilities to help customers connect with SMEs; • showcasing industry capabilities to key customers; and • promotion of the commercial strengths of the SME sector.

“As IT Supplier Advocate, Mr Easter works closely with AGIMO and across government enabling SMEs to achieve greater visibility in the government IT market and capitalise on business opportunities,” Senator Carr said.

Mr Easter is appointed under the $8.2 million Supplier Advocate Program, a key part of the Government’s $19.1 million Australian Industry Participation package.

The Supplier Advocate Program recruits respected business leaders to help targeted sectors undertake practical industry development projects. More information on the program is available at www.innovation.gov.au.

Media contacts: Sheena Ireland, Minister's Office, 0427 092 100 Mike Lawson, Department, 0419 416 816