How International Skills Shortages are Impacting Australia

Posted on: 14.09.2012    09:27:03

Good news stories don’t get much coverage wherever you are in the world. Bad news sells newspapers and features highly in all forms of media and Australia is no different except everything takes linger down under and that it part of the problem.

Three month ago you couldn’t pick up a press report from down under without reading of the imminent collapse of Australian commercial enterprises lead of course by the miners enjoying the rump end of a commodities boom that was bound at some point in time to slow down with a price correction as supply and demand came more into kilter.

Australian thinking needs to be on a global platform as other countries begin to recover and compete for international talent. This involves better planning, professional communication and above all making prompt decisions when talent is made available. Australian HR is poor on all fronts but leads the world in indecision and time wasting and it pays to select your clients wisely otherwise they will damage your brand as well. Coupled with this is the visa requirements and when candidates discover the reality of this aspect many give up and go elsewhere, as talent has choices, something that many Australian employers have yet to recognise.

Top talent is a global market and cross border recruitment is something that is occurring daily and whilst Australia remains a popular destination it is no different than choosing your holiday destination. If flights are to expensive, the package on offer not good enough,  then individuals will look elsewhere. Employers need to be out there competing on an international platform but even getting a basic job description can be a challenge. Australians have had it too easy for too long and need to wake up to the fact that the BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India and China) countries together with others in Asia the Middle East and North America are hunting the very same people because there are global skills shortages in:

  • Aviation, particularly Commercial pilots and Maintenance
  • Education. The global demand for ESL Teachers is incredible
  • Engineering. The USA and Europe, particularly Germany have shortages
  • Healthcare. Everywhere has issues and it is a global merry-go-round
  • Information Technology. Emerging technologies need the right people in the right place at the right time and is ever changing
  • Natural Resources. it might have slowed down in Australia as global demand slows and Australia might find it tougher to compete against lower cost producers but the skills will still be needed somewhere around the globe.

Now a slow down in mining has not changed the chronic skills shortages that continue to exist in Australia so if you are still attracted and have patience as well as the professional and trade skills recognition needed then here are the top 10 jobs still needed in Australia:

  1. Chefs – not even on the skills shortage list , but there are opportunities right across Australia
  2. Commercial Airline pilots – you need a minimum of 1500 hours TT to get a look in
  3. Healthcare, in particular Dentists and Dental Technicians are needed now
  4. IT professionals, but your skills need to be a close match
  5. Mechanics, car , HGV and Aviation are all short
  6. Accountants, a claimed shortage of 20,000
  7. Engineers, mainly electrical and mechanical
  8. Logistics/Warehousing
  9. Top end construction – Architects, Surveyors , Project Managers
  10. Everything Else but only if you have certified trade skills or in demand professional qualifications. Check out this link  if your skills appear there is probably an opportunity.

We are here to help but employees should downloadthis link and be prepared to provide this level of detail before approaching us.

For employers we provide links about getting prepared but are happy to provide informal advice up front because if the total package is wrong there is no point in starting the search.

Australia remains a country of huge opportunities but no country is an island when it comes to recruitment.


Author: Chris Slay

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