A regular and exclusive series addressing some of the major challenges facing SMEs today. Icehouse Insights also highlights some of the possible solutions you can weave into your business to solve common issues.
Is your business suffering from a skills shortage? What can you do to solve it?
Let's ask if, and why, the shortage exists, and whether it's time for businesses to consider solving present and future skills/talent shortages by implementing a find, develop and nurture-from-within model for recruitment.
New Zealand's employment landscape became incredibly uneven in early 2020 as organisations across all sectors adjusted to new ways of doing business amid the shifting sands of rapid economic upturn and downturn.
COVID-19 also brought about a renewed focus on recruitment, as some sectors experienced great upheavals in the job market while others remained unchallenged. A major discussion point emerging among our alumni, programme facilitators, coaches and advisors, and wider network is a perceived skills shortage. As a result, finding, retaining and nurturing talent to mitigate against a skills shortage is now front and centre for the nation's SMEs
A skills shortage in terms of meeting the needs of a nation's long and short term and regional skills gap occurs when there are not enough people available with the skills needed to do the jobs which need to be done. At The Icehouse, we believe that a skills shortage in terms of meeting the needs of New Zealand's SMEs occurs when there are not enough people available with the "right" skills needed to do the jobs which need to be done.
Is there a skills shortage in New Zealand?
There is no official, simple or reliable measure of the existence of a skills shortage because official unemployment figures (as at 31 March 2021, New Zealand's employment rate stood at 4.7%) do not tell the complete picture.
So specialists use industry insights, anecdotal evidence from recruiters, business owners and hr specialists, plus more quantifiable measures such as the time it takes to fill vacancies to explain current trends. So, by these measures, it can be argued that there is a skills shortage in New Zealand...
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