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Skills shortage reaching crisis levels in New Zealand’s service industry

Skills shortage reaching crisis levels in New Zealand’s service industry
July 17, 2017

Industry training organisation ServiceIQ has warned that a looming skill shortage in the service industry is going to affect all New Zealanders, across all regions, as well as visitors to the country.

Dean Minchington, Chief Executive for ServiceIQ, the Industry Training Organisation for the tourism, hospitality, aviation, retail and retail supply chain and museum industries, explains “without scaremongering, there’s a very real crisis around the corner (which will put) our successful service sectors at risk, and unless things change soon, New Zealand will be worse for it.”

Based on the latest At Your Service Aotearoa economic report, Minchington identifies a shortage of skilled labour needed to fill around 200,000 jobs that will be opening in the next two and a half years.

Most of this is due to extraordinary exponential growth across sectors that include tourism - New Zealand’s leading economic earner - hospitality, retail and aviation.

Minchington says ServiceIQ is calling on all politicians, both central government and local to work together to change things for the better.

In a related development, Minchington says the Government’s new investment of $50 million to help the most at-risk young people in regional New Zealand into jobs should be applauded, seeing a strong alignment between this initiative and the manifesto addressing the service sector skills shortage recently released by At Your Service Aotearoa.

Minchington explains "our sectors have an urgent need for talented people and a lot to offer New Zealanders who are yet to discover their potential or direct their talent."

He says ServiceIQ is well positioned to play a vigorous role as part of the solution, adding “getting paid a regular salary while getting an education and valuable experience on the job is the best way to get out from under and carve out a future.

“Working and training at the same time provide a real opportunity for people to discover and develop their talent which in turn can improve confidence, self-worth, well-being, and ultimately open other opportunities for a more satisfying and enjoyable life."

ServiceIQ is already involved with many organisations and working in partnership to address this major issue. 

Image: Jesse Roys of Taupo Bungy.

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