Business SA Today

Summit to kick start skills shortage and productivity solutions

Yarik Turianskyi
Monday, August 8th 2022

According to the June 2022 Business SA and William Buck Survey of Business Expectations, 70 per cent of businesses found it harder to source labour in the past quarter. This is a nation-wide problem leading to stagnant productivity, partially because of Australia closing its international borders to skilled migrants and students from March 2020 to December 2021. Although borders have re-opened, some migrants have decided to relocate to other destinations, for example Canada and the UK. Others have not arrived because of a considerable visa backlog. Low migration rates are coupled with low unemployment, so there are not enough workers to meet employers’ needs. The unemployment rate in Australia is a mere 3.5 percent, and while South Australia has the joint-highest unemployment rate, it is still only 4.3 percent. 

To address these labour market challenges and ultimately improve productivity, the Federal Government is in process of establishing Jobs and Skills Australia – an independent statutory body tasked with advising the government on workforce, skills and training needs. This body will focus on improving inclusivity in the economy, particularly of youth, women, older Australians and people with disabilities. Jobs and Skills Australia will replace and expand on the work of the National Skills Commission, aiming to address the country’s skills deficit and proactively work to prevent future worker shortages. 

Federal Government is also organising a Jobs and Skills Summit. Its purpose is to inform the work of Jobs and Skills Australia by bringing together representatives of different sectors, including unions, employers, industry groups and governments, to address economic challenges, find ways to deliver secure and well-paid jobs, and ensure sustainable wage growth to improve productivity. The Summit will recommend immediate actions for reform, although these are only likely to be effective in the medium- to long-term. Following this event, the Government will seek input for an upcoming Employment White Paper.

Business SA is working closely with the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI) and will shortly meet with the State Premier, the Hon Peter Malinauskas MP, to ensure that the views of the South Australian business community are represented in these discussions. 

Author

Yarik Turianskyi

Senior Policy Advisor
Recent Articles
7 Oct 2022 | Business SA Today
New South Australian Business Directory aims to be state's biggest listing of businesses
5 Oct 2022 | Business SA Today
Photo Gallery: Chamber Networking - The Duke of Brunswick, Thursday 28 September 2022
5 Oct 2022 | Business SA Today
Entrepreneur makes marketing work with Marketing Works
5 Oct 2022 | Business SA Today
Upcoming e-dollar pilot: bank account not required
4 Oct 2022 | Business SA Today
How will your team thrive?
4 Oct 2022 | Business SA Today
SafeWork SA – Electrical Safety Campaign