Public Sector


Adelaide, Australia

The University of South Australia (UniSA) is a public research university in the Australian state of South Australia. It is a founding member of the Australian Technology Network of universities and is the largest university in South Australia with approximately 32,000 students. It offers degree programs across a wide range of subjects including business, law, education, arts and social sciences, health sciences, engineering, the environment and information technology.

The University’s culture of innovation is anchored around global and national links to academic, research and industry partners.

DXC Technology is engaged in numerous projects with the aim of fostering digital literacy and the learning of new skills, particularly in the areas of Science, Technology Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).

To help students gain real-world experience and make key industry contacts, DXC and UniSA partnered to create a unique degree program offering students the very best university education together with valuable hands-on work experience.

Initially launched in 2015 to help address the growing skills shortage in South Australia, the program, and DXC and UniSA’s partnership, has continued to evolve and harness talent. University training is integrated with DXC as a career path, with an internship directly related to studies. It provides students access to cutting edge innovation in technology to cultivate and develop their experience aligned to their early career, while the ongoing collaboration with UniSA allows the tertiary education provider to reshape the degree if or when required, to ensure continuing relevance for today’s student and industry needs.


Joint program approach

The joint program was established to ensure a degree relevant to current industry needs, provide students with appropriate hands-on experience while completing their studies, and to create a high-quality workforce pipeline for DXC.

Having launched a national delivery centre in South Australia, DXC was looking to attract additional talent to employ for this new initiative. The program offered a way to address employment issues while building a trained workforce for tomorrow.

Ground-breaking at the time, through DXC’s Delivery Hub students are given opportunities to work on large private sector, state and federal government IT projects. This provides invaluable exposure working as part of a team in a commercial environment, ensuring students are workforce-ready once their studies are complete.

Originally co-designed as a four-year Bachelor of Information Technology, Business and Enterprise (Honours), the program has continued to evolve to meet student and industry needs. The program now focuses on a three-year Bachelor of Information Technology which incorporates two internship periods, with several DXC team members providing input to the curriculum. Those involved include expert scrum masters to embed agile project management methodology, and people with specialist skills across niche areas, like virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), artificial intelligence/machine learning (AI/ML), data analytics, and core programming.

Luke Stephenson, Training and Development Lead for DXC Technology in Australia and New Zealand said, “The relationship between UniSA, the largest university in South Australia, and DXC, one of the largest technology companies in the world, is beneficial for the growth of jobs in South Australia and indeed the whole of Australia. Nationally there are increasing skills shortages for graduates with IT skills. This program enables DXC to establish a great calibre pipeline of local talent whilst supporting local, national and even global industries”.

“It’s an opportunity for IT students in Australia to put their learning into practice during their degree. To gain experience which is going to stand them in good stead as they look forward to their careers as IT professionals”.

Professor David Lloyd Vice-Chancellor and President, University of South Australia

Student selection and support

With around 40 students registering on average each year for the program, the student selection process is very structured, as is the program and ongoing support offered. Stephenson commented, “On a regular basis, I speak with DXC business unit managers across the company to understand the types of skills we need to develop, and the expected talent forecast. Once we determine our talent acquisition requirements, I work with the UniSA program lead to initiate a call to action for students. The students submit their applications which we assess, then comprehensive interviews and further reviews are conducted before selections are made.”

DXC considers each individual’s career aspirations and tries to match those with current workloads which the interns can manage independently in a supported way. Students are allocated a mentor, and regular check-ins ensure adequate support, structure and allocation of valuable work. Stephenson continued, “We want students to do valued work that influences their university assessment. Therefore, we treat each of them as respected and contributing employees who participate in worthwhile work from the outset”.

Developing local talent

DXC employs 1,200+ people in South Australia and for many years has worked alongside the South Australian state and federal government, as well as local and global businesses to create new and innovative technology solutions that have ultimately benefited the local economy.

Creating jobs and skills pathways programs builds on DXC’s commitment to STEM. Enhancing information and communication technology (ICT) capabilities within South Australia supports the state’s vision to be a world innovation leader.

Through the Delivery Hub, DXC helps develop and nurture necessary local talent – a high-quality onshore workforce pipeline. Many graduates work on high profile accounts that require qualified, Australian or local South Australian-based talent. Opportunities for students to experience and contribute to these types of large and complex projects anywhere else in the country are limited and highly sought after.

Stephenson commented, “Four years on, DXC continues to create and nurture a high-quality workforce pipeline to address the specialised STEM skills of the future. Access to mentors, our partner ecosystem and expert resources not only benefits students’ learning, development and experience, but also by developing these skills, it will assist South Australia in meeting its on-going talent needs in industries such as defence, space, cybersecurity, health, technology, and more. DXC is already addressing upcoming needs with its involvement in exciting and advanced fields like cloud computing, AI/ML, analytics, data science and cybersecurity”.

Benefits of the program

For students, the benefits are immeasurable: significant hands-on industry experience in addition to classroom learning, an excellent understanding of the vocation they are working towards and the opportunities available in the global IT sector, as well as the prospect of working for DXC after their degree. Students quickly become embedded in the team culture and, unlike other new graduates, aren’t overwhelmed by the experience. Workforce-ready at the end of their degree, DXC managers and mentors report a smooth transition for students once they move into full-time work since they’ve already worked in a large IT business.

It’s one thing to develop the skills, but another to retain them – something that’s becoming more and more critical. 97% of students who have graduated from the program to date have been offered a full-time role with DXC post-study. Retention sits at around 80% for an average of three years – a fantastic result. In addition, several individuals have gone on to project and people leadership roles, accelerating their career progression via the head start gained through the program. Plus, some students report the experience on the program has given them an edge over their peers when applying for roles with other organisations.

“I started my 12-month internship with DXC working in the Service Delivery Excellence team consolidating and analysing data sets”, said Sarah Rich, Client Advisor, Cloud and IT Outsourcing Service Line, DXC Technology in Australia and New Zealand. “After completing the internship, I was offered a full-time role with DXC, becoming a communication champion focused on driving regional adoption of DXC programs. Four years later, I’m now working as a client advisor on innovation programs with DXC’s Service Delivery team, responsible for maintaining critical client relationships on large and strategic DXC accounts.

“Our students are ranked among the highest for graduate outcomes with almost 100% being offered fulltime employment by DXC. This is proof of the program’s success in helping students become work-ready and employable. The degree is relevant to industry needs today, and the future skills students will need to prosper.”

Dino Rossi Senior Project Manager for the Office of the Vice-Chancellor, University of South Australia

“Since being on the internship program and working with DXC, I’ve had so many great opportunities where I’ve been involved with many high-profile and well-known public and private sector customers. I was also lucky enough to travel to India with the internship program, and later to Bratislava in Slovakia to participate in a global event. The internship was honestly the best start to my career, and I am so grateful to have been given the opportunity to complete it. It really enabled me to be workforce ready with skills that were truly relevant for IT and business”.

Professor David Lloyd, Vice-Chancellor and President of UniSA, said, “What’s so exciting about this program is that it is unique. It’s an opportunity for IT students in Australia to put their learning into practice during their degree. To gain experience which is going to stand them in good stead as they look forward to their careers as IT professionals”.

Dino Rossi, Senior Project Manager for UniSA’s Office of the Vice-Chancellor, is passionate about fostering mutually valued relationships between industry, education and research institutions, and champions the promotion and development of high calibre digital skills in South Australia’s emerging workforce.

Commenting on the program’s success, he said, “Our students are ranked among the highest for graduate outcomes with almost 100% being offered fulltime employment by DXC. This is proof of the program’s success in helping students become work-ready and employable. The degree is relevant to industry needs today, and the future skills students will need to prosper”.

Looking forward

DXC is committed to building the skills of the next generation of graduates who will be critical in supporting Australia’s future. In the 2022 Top100 Graduate Employers Awards hosted by GradConnection in partnership with The Australian Financial Review and Chandler Macleod, DXC Technology was ranked number one as the Most Popular Technology Employer in Australia, and number seven in the overall list of graduate employers – a testament to this, and the many other programs offered by DXC to encourage and support students on their career paths.

DXC is playing a pivotal role in guiding and transitioning organisations from legacy technology infrastructure and advancing them on their digital journeys. The continuing strong partnership with UniSA is helping South Australians to build meaningful careers in technology, assisting to retain homegrown talent, and nurturing the essential skills required for our digital future.

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