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Tag: sustainability

Play Smart on and off the field with Australia’s favourite players

Telstra Foundation Technology For Kids

Posted on April 27, 2018

2 min read

At Telstra, we’re passionate about encouraging young people to be safe both on and off the field. We’ve created Play Smart™, a program run in conjunction with cyber safety experts PROJECT ROCKIT and some of Australia’s favorite sporting teams and players.

Play Smart™ is a free session designed to empower 12-16-year-olds by providing important skills around both cyber safety and playing sport as part of a team.

Sessions will be held at locations around Australia between April and September 2018. If you can’t make it to a session, you can Play Smart at home with these cyber safety tips from ambassador Cameron Smith and PROJECT ROCKIT.

New Play Smart sessions are being added regularly. Visit the Telstra website to see if there’s one coming to your area soon.

We have run a number of Play Smart clinics to date. Check out some of the highlights below.


Give for our kids this Good Friday

Sustainability Business and Enterprise

Posted on March 28, 2018

2 min read

The Royal Children’s Hospital (RCH) has played a critical role caring for some of the most vulnerable in our community – our children – for over 140 years, and the Good Friday Appeal helps continue this initiative. Get involved and give our children a brighter future.

Understanding the amazing professionalism and dedication of the staff at the RCH cannot really be appreciated until you have been personally touched.

Numbers only tell some of the story, and here are some that give an indication of the incredible work they do:

  • 85,991 emergency presentations
  • 322,291 specialist clinic appointments
  • 4,656 emergency surgeries
  • 437 children cared for on any given day

I’m proud that we are again the telecommunications sponsor for the RCH’s Good Friday Appeal which is happening this Friday, 30 March. This not-for-profit charity raises money to ensure the RCH can continue to care for our children and raised $17,605,662 last year. We are helping connect 200 phone lines for a 15-hour telethon, and you can also donate online.

A recent search of the archives has revealed that Telstra’s partnership with the Royal Children’s Hospital goes back further than we had originally thought. News articles dating back to 1955 have been found that a one Mrs. Roy Walters from the Postmasters-General’s Department, who had already been volunteering as a telephonist for ten years at that time (meaning Telstra’s involvement goes back to at least 1945), posits Telstra’s involvement at 73 years. Like this connected legacy, our involvement continues this year.

This year, our sponsorship involves setting up the telethon room for the event with the 200 phone lines needed for the 15-hour event, using our Telstra Cloud Collaboration Cisco Powered product, which is an easy way to set up a flexible and adaptable call centre. Last year we connected over 17,000 calls and we hope this year there will be many more. Open your hearts and give to the Good Friday Appeal so our children can have the care they deserve.

Advice from charity award winners: propel your business digitally

Telstra Business Awards Advice

Posted on March 27, 2018

3 min read

In light of our refreshed Telstra Business Awards program, we speak to some of our past Charity Award winners to find out the doors that have opened for them since taking home their title – along with their advice for prospective charities and social enterprises considering entering this year.

Now in their 26th year, the Telstra Business Awards have evolved to provide greater value to the Australian business community. We’ve updated the Awards program to better reflect current business trends, including replacing our previous Charity Award with a new Social Change Maker category.

This new category will recognise outstanding organisations where a positive social impact is at the core of their purpose and will be open to not-for-profit, social enterprise and profit-for-purpose organisations.

Celebrating social enterprises

There are currently around 20,000 social enterprises in Australia. With the number growing steadily, we recognised the importance of celebrating these organisations.

Simon Rowe, CEO of the 2017 Telstra Victorian Charity Award winner sleepbus, comments that the evolving social enterprise space is an exciting one. “Social enterprises are a powerful movement,” he says. “Not only do they innovate, disrupt and inspire, they are also creating hope, passion, jobs and above all, they’re making our world better by helping those less fortunate.”

“Social enterprises demand recognition because of what they are able to achieve financially and the social impact they can have,” Simon adds.

For Scott Rankin, CEO of 2017 Telstra Tasmanian Charity Award winner Big hART, ‘social’, ‘change’ and ‘maker’ are the three most important words in the English language. “Imagine the world without them,” he says. “This new category is important because building a better world is fundamental to continuing to be able to do business. Social change making results in sustainability.”

“Doors are flying open”

Our Alumni credit their Awards wins with opening up new opportunities and experiences for their organisation – almost from the moment their names were announced. For 2017 Telstra Australian Charity Award winner, MS Research Australia, that resulted in approaches from many more donors and philanthropists interested in their cause.

“The digital media exposure that came off the back of winning an Award has provided additional assurance to those affected by MS regarding our transparency, innovation, and our progressive focus,” says CEO Dr. Matthew Miles.

Similarly, Scott Rankin says since winning, doors have been flying open for Big hART. “From speaking to the Tasmanian State Cabinet about digital inclusion and prevention strategies for family violence, through to pitching our business to forward-thinking philanthropic bodies, we are continually searching for transformative projects that work,” Scott says.

Winning advice

For charities and social enterprises considering entering this year’s Awards, Dr. Miles says to use the opportunity for your own advancement: “My advice would be to enjoy the opportunity and meet as many people as you can. It’s a great chance to think differently about how you work.”

As for Simon Rowe, his advice is to ‘just do it’. “You literally have nothing to lose and everything to gain. It’s a fantastic opportunity to benchmark what you’re doing, engage with others and to learn from each other.”

To make this year ‘that’ year for your not-for-profit, social enterprise or profit-for-purpose organisation, be sure to submit your entry before 28 of March and enter by the 9 of April.

Anyone can nominate, so if you know a deserving charity or social enterprise, nominate them for a Telstra Business Award today.

Why green cities are smart cities

Business and Enterprise

Posted on March 19, 2018

3 min read

The opportunity to transform communities, suburbs and cities into smart spaces can result in less carbon and higher levels of amenity, productivity and social benefit. In simple terms, more cloud means less carbon.

Companies recognise sustainability as an essential factor for long-term success, and finding solutions to pressing environmental challenges is business critical. But do the latest digital solutions and advancements in IT infrastructure, networking and cloud offer businesses a solution to reduce their environmental impacts?

At a very practical level, technology has much to offer cities, suburbs and local communities – and this means that the cloud has a key role to play in providing innovative services and applications that meet growing demand from business, residents and tourists alike.

More broadly, smart cities are being conceived in a way that address real-world issues such as public safety and collision avoidance capabilities, emergency services, traffic congestion and environmental monitoring.

In short, our digital future comprises much more than internet-connected fridges and streaming video.

The Internet of Things (IoT) and its ability to support billions of connected devices worldwide is likely to positively transform industries, sectors and communities. IoT is a key element of smart cities and feeds into the total mix of activities which shape a community’s digital aspirations and demands.

The benefits of switching to cloud technology within a green cities context are multifaceted for enterprises. Cloud can help a business, tenant or landlord to enhance their competitive advantage, by enabling global connectivity, improving efficiency, and reducing networking costs.

What many organisations aren’t aware of is the benefits of cloud for reducing energy-related costs and carbon emissions. Our latest research study and whitepaper called Connecting With The Cloud – A Low-Carbon Future Is Ahead focuses on the potential of cloud to drive operational and cost efficiencies, while cutting carbon emissions.

Interestingly, the study found that if all Australian organisations moved to cloud technology, we could potentially reduce carbon emissions by 4.5 million tonnes a year. This would translate into approximately $1 billion savings in energy costs annually.

And these energy savings extend across the board, from small organisations to large multinationals. The study found that a small business with 1 to 19 employees can reduce carbon emissions by 78 per cent when moving their on-premises IT to shared cloud computing. For large organisations of over 500 employees, this can extend to a savings of as much as 80 per cent in carbon emissions.

Technology is a powerful force in creating positive environments and spaces. It’s also an opportunity to transform how we develop services and applications that are highly connected and deliver meaningful outcomes for communities. These are increasingly critical requirements as we move toward the creation and management of green cities.

We know that smart cities and IoT applications will be built on the foundations of state-of-the-art, superfast connectivity and cloud infrastructure, and this translates directly in high performance green cities.

Calculating what you can save by moving to the cloud is straightforward. Our Cloud Footprint Calculator is a business-friendly tool that can help you make smart decisions that are commercially sensible and customer-centric.

Find out what you could save by moving to Telstra’s cloud.

Connecting love: our stories from Midsumma


Posted on February 9, 2018

5 min read

One of the great things about working for Telstra is the opportunity to make a real difference in the community. I’m feeling especially proud of the role we’ve just played as the technology partner to Midsumma, Australia’s premiere queer arts and culture festival, held in Melbourne each year.

While I’ve enjoyed Midsumma before, this year was different. I am part of Telstra’s Diversity and Inclusion team, and worked closely with the organisers in the lead up the lead up to the festival. And I also jumped at the opportunity to be a Telstra Citizen Reporter, a voluntary role which saw me attending events throughout the three-week festival, sharing the Midsumma experience through my own social media accounts.

There was a lot to share. The three-week festival included some truly awe-inspiring events this year. Besides Carnival Day and Pride March, there was a wide array of shows to see – theatre, musical theatre, stand up, cabaret, art exhibitions. Midsumma truly caters to the wider LGBT+ community, and personally, I loved their stronger focus on the Indigenous LGBT+ community this year.

I was one of six Telstra Citizen Reporters in 2018. As we return to normal life this week, I’ve asked some of them to share a little of their Midsumma experiences this year.

Elana Monteleone is a sub-editor and copywriter in Telstra’s Knowledge Team, and a TV binge-watching, taekwondo enthusiast.

She keeps coming back to Midsumma as a Telstra Citizen Reporter for the variety of events and the welcoming people who attend them – even in heatwave conditions.

“Despite the blistering heat, this year’s Pride March had a more celebratory feel. With the Marriage Bill finally amended, participants and spectators took the opportunity to relish in the win. The determination now shifts to other matters, as there is still so much to work to do beyond the yes vote.”

Stephanie Dickson has been attending Midsumma since she was a child. Now an Executive Assistant, Consumer & Small Business, with three very different degrees to her name, she was delighted to share her ongoing enthusiasm for the festival.

“I felt more connected being a Telstra Citizen Reporter but I also think there was more awareness this year about the other events. Previously, people have been very focused on Carnival and Pride but I think there was more talk of the other events this year which is great.”

Another long-term Midsumma participant, Adam Sparnon is a Customer Experience Program Specialist by day and a sci-fi enthusiast and coach away from work. He found this year’s involvement of a wide variety of people from diverse backgrounds particularly inspiring.

“My greatest impression of Midsumma this year was the friendly, inclusive social nature of people attending events across the festival period. I’ve found the events both fun and at times deeply insightful.

“And I felt a sense of pride to be representing an organisation which visibly supports diversity and inclusion by actively participating in Midsumma.”

Pride in Telstra’s support for Midsumma is a common thread in all of our experience over the three weeks of the festival.

“It’s heartening to know that Telstra actively shows support for the LGBT+ community by partnering with Midsumma. Many can say they value and strive for diversity and inclusion, but actions speak louder than words,” said Elana.

I’ll let Sophie Stewart from our Copper Continuity Process Support team have the last word.

“As I’ve just recently moved here, this was my first ever experience with Midsumma and it has easily been my favourite thing about Melbourne so far. I was overwhelmed by the audiences at every event that I went to; it was such a breath of fresh air to be a part of a community who wants to support one another and support the parts of the community that deserve our support and understanding.

“Knowing that the company I work for played a part in sponsoring this festival filled me with great pride. I believe all people should be supportive of diversity and inclusion and I love knowing that my workplace is one of the ones leading the way. I was so grateful to Midsumma for giving me the opportunity to gain a better understanding of the lived experiences of people who identify as LGBT+.”

Midsumma is Australia’s premiere queer arts and culture festival, held in Melbourne each year. We have proudly partnered with Midsumma since 2011. We see the connection of queer culture and what we do as a company that connects people to the things they love as a natural partnership and as important in championing an inclusive culture for our people.  This is at the heart of why we proudly show up each year at Midsumma. 

As technology partner, we are proud to provide phone and internet services to the Midsumma team, enabling them to be brilliantly connected. Our volunteer social media reporters attend Midsumma events and promote through their social media accounts, encouraging others to attend the variety of events on offer.