Accenture's Timoti Wharewaka on hiring Māori and Pasifika staff and TupuToa (listen)

Accenture's Timoti Wharewaka, who was hired after taking part in the TupuToa internship programme, chats with Ben Mack about his journey so far, why businesses should hire Māori and Pasifika staff, and offers advice for young Māori and Pasifika people interested in tech careers.

Top image: Timoti Wharewaka.

Young professional Timoti Wharewaka, 21, of Ngāpuhi descent, is well on the way to becoming a Māori leader of his generation in the information technology space.

In November 2017, Wharewaka began an internship at global management consultancy Accenture, after completing the TupuToa internship programme aimed at Māori and Pasifika tertiary graduates.

Based in Auckland and founded in 2016, the TupuToa programme takes tertiary graduates through a pathway programme that prepares them for a career in the corporate sector. It’s the first of its kind in New Zealand, modelled on an Australian programme called CareerTrackers, which aims to increase indigenous representation in corporate Australia. With 29 partners across the corporate and government sector, TupuToa’s programmes are primarily funded by partners.

TupuToa CEO Anne Fitisemanu says it operates across a range of sectors, responding to the needs of corporate New Zealand. She says graduates are coming out of university with conjoint degrees in law and Māori business development, meaning graduates can work in many sectors.

Daniel Lund, Accenture’s head of Cloud First (yes, that’s one of his titles) and Corporate Citizenship in New Zealand, believes that the partnership with TupuToa encourages diversity of thought, and sees it as a major driver of business growth.

Wharewaka says he was hired by Accenture as his internship was coming to an end, and now has been working full-time for the company for the past few weeks. Have a listen below to what he has to say about his journey so far – and why more businesses need to promote diversity and embrace Māori and Pasifika staff.

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