Labour Market Update - Nov 2016
Now is an exciting time for businesses and individuals to be living in the Bay. Not only are we approaching the festive season and a predicted sunny summer, but our economy is thriving – meaning more jobs for more of our people.
Indeed, many believe the Bay of Plenty punches well above its weight when contributing to the national economy, thanks to key sectors such as forestry and tourism.
There has been much talk of unemployment over the last couple of weeks off the back of Statistics New Zealand’s third quarter figures, which show that the national unemployment rate is down to 4.9%, the lowest level it has been in the past eight years.
Labour Market Statistics for the September 2016 quarter also showed that more young people have joined the national workforce, with the most employment growth in the 25 to 29-year age group, up 7,200. This will be a much-needed boost to our ageing workforce, particularly for the regions.
Unemployment in the Bay of Plenty dropped to 5.1% in the third quarter, down 0.7% from the same period last year, and SEEK figures for September show an increase in online job listings of 6.5% compared to the same time last year. We are seeing these new roles being created across the board, not just in the traditionally strong summer seasonal sectors often associated with third-quarter data leading into busier summer months - which indicates true growth.
Sectors that have seen the most growth recently in the Bay have been around tourism, hospitality and retail, as well as not-so-seasonal sectors such as trades and services, construction, and manufacturing, transport and logistics.
At Talent ID we have seen steady growth in the jobs market over the past two and a half years, particularly in Rotorua – this is not a flash-in-the-pan type of growth, but more permanent and we should see it continue.
With business growth and the creation of new positions comes the inevitable challenges of competing for talent and employing the right people who will be with you for the long term. Despite a number of people looking to relocate from larger centres, particularly Auckland, a general ageing workforce and slowing migration means skills shortages already exist in some sectors and we are likely to see this increase.
To combat skills shortages, many companies will need to take a focused step to look at the bigger-picture view of the next five to 10 years and what you want your company to look like, as opposed to hiring people for the here and now. Part of this includes looking at increasing training staff on-the-job, through the likes of apprenticeships and graduate development programmes.
Who do you want in key roles? What skills will those people need? How will you support them to achieve that? Can you find people who have similar goals and ambitions that you can then help to up-skill in line with your business objectives?
Skills shortages means training the right people into businesses will become even more important going forward. Yes, some people you have invested in will inevitably leave, but you can help to minimise this by offering incentives and rewards, and creating a value proposition that people can’t ignore.
With more people looking to relocate from main centres to the Bay, lifestyle and work-life balance are as big a drawcard as roles themselves and we have the opportunity to attract talented people to the region. The age of wellness and wellbeing means more people are putting more emphasis on things outside of work.
What we can offer in the Bay of Plenty is hugely unique and gives us a competitive advantage over other regions – not only in terms of beaches, lakes and forests all on our doorstep, but affordable housing and quality schools. These things can hold as much value as salary for people either looking to move here or wanting to stay put.
We have the ability to sell the ‘whole package’ when it comes to creating roles and attracting people – don’t underestimate your value proposition!
To be a part of this exciting growth in our region and help local companies to put the right people into the right positions is a real privilege. If you would like to talk about how we can help you, we would love to hear from you.