Is the lack of electricians the reason you don’t have the NBN already?


This week NBN and Communications Minister, Malcolm Turnbull announced they are hiring. A big new training and jobs strategy to get the NBN built. The announcement explains that to achieve the NBN rollout on time, the skilled workforce may need to increase by more than 4,500 jobs. That’s close to double that are currently working on the project.

If you’re experienced in one of the following areas, or are willing to skill up, NBN want you.

  • Telecommunications linesworkers;
  • Telecommunications copper cablejointers;
  • Telecommunications technicians;
  • Telecommunications data cablers;

This raises some really big questions. From the outset of this project, we all knew it was going to take a massive workforce to execute on such a massive project, the largest infrastructure project in the country. So why only now, why not 5-6 years ago, wouldn’t that have meant more Australians connected to the network faster?

What about the budget, was this always planned and budgeted for ? Or are we looking at increasing the spend on the build of the NBN mixed-mode network, the same one that used a technology change from FTTP to FTTP as a reason that we could get it done faster.

If the speed of the NBN seriously is being limited by the number of skilled warm bodies we can throw at the problem, then it seems like a massive missed opportunity to have waited until now. The new jobs are great for the individuals that get them during the project, but these are hardly going to be sustainable once the NBN build is complete (hopefully around 2020).

Just quietly, there’s also currently 78 other jobs being advertised for NBN across a range of disciplines.

If you’re interested, or have any skills in this area, head over to NBN to find out more.


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This post is authored by techAU staffers. Used rarely and sparingly when the source decided to keep their identity secret, or a guest author who isn't seeking credit.

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