Australia Seeks 80,000 Workers in Next Five Years

Australia is already anticipating a structural shift in job market as demand for skilled labour as well as service providers is growing larger each day in the country. A recent report from the government has revealed that the country needs 80,000 new workers in order for the country to sustain its current economic growth.

Recent Reports on Skilled Labour Shortag

A recent report from Claudius Skills Index revealed a shortage of 2300 skilled labour in the June quarter itself. The index was based on 20 occupations across 2.6 million Australians out of which 9 occupations reflected a serious shortage.

On the other hand, businesses are still a little wary of increasing the work force unless the economy is more stable and moving at a faster pace than now. "A lot of companies are quite sceptical about additional hiring and increasing their labour costs and I think that's because we've had a couple of false starts," said Clarius chief executive Kym Quick.

There has been a serious demand for skilled labour in engineering sector, mining, corporate services, Information technology and marketing. The highest demand has been recorded for the engineers.

Currently, a cut down in the work force has added more burden on the current employees which may result in heavier employee turnover when the economy recovers. Added work load has seriously affected employee loyalty for the company.

Debate on Hiring Foreign Skilled Workers

There has been a serious debate in the country going for hiring foreign skilled workers for the mining companies in Australia. Eventually the debate has been settled in favour of the mining companies. The erstwhile Gilliard government policy favoured the Enterprise Migration Agreements (EMA) that allowed miners to bring in foreign workers to fill in the labour shortage in the booming mining sector.

Currently, the Roy Hill Venture owned by world’s richest woman Gina Reinhart was allowed to bring 1700 skilled labours for their mining company. The Minerals Council of Australia stressed that it has an Australians-first policy but added there are not enough local workers with the proper skills to fill the short-term requirements of construction projects in the mining industry. The council vowed to continue training thousands of Australians to help build and run new projects, but emphasized that it needs skilled workers now.

Australia’s Demand for Skilled Workers

According to government sources, Australia is witnessing an increasingly high demand for skilled workers especially in the resources sector. The resources sector in the nation is in a big boom calling for growing number of workers to work at various projects. Currently the government has decided an annual intake for skilled foreign workers of 190,000.

Present Australian quota for skilled foreign workers is 185,000 under Australia skilled migration program. The new quote will bring in new 130,000 skilled manpower and 60,000 foreigners for family reunion.

Growing Demand for Skilled Labour Force

Australian employers have alleged that shortage of labour has led to cost pressure on the companies. There is a consistent widening gap between high demand and poor supply of well-trained and experienced labour force. This could prove to be detrimental for the poor supply of the skilled labour force.

"Support for temporary skilled migration is sound government policy, something recognised by wise and experienced heads across the political spectrum," stated an advertisement in leading Australian newspaper.

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