Skilled job vacancies fell in August

By Ben Chapman-Smith

Most skilled industry groups saw a drop in job vacancies last month, led by a 9.6 per cent decline in the healthcare and medical industry.
Most skilled industry groups saw a drop in job vacancies last month, led by a 9.6 per cent decline in the healthcare and medical industry.

Skilled Kiwi workers on the hunt for a job had fewer positions to choose from last month, according to latest figures.

The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) today released its Jobs Online report for August, which brings together numbers from the Seek and Trade Me Jobs websites.

All online job vacancies fell by 3.7 per cent in August and the number of ads for skilled jobs fell by 2.1 per cent.

Over the year to August, all vacancies increased by 6.3 per cent and skilled vacancies by 2.4 per cent.

Most skilled industry groups saw a drop last month, led by a 9.6 per cent decline in the healthcare and medical industry. The number of accounting, human resources and administration roles fell 6 per cent.

The biggest gain was in the construction and engineering industry, up 5.8 per cent, followed by the hospitality and tourism industry, up 1.4 per cent.

Auckland and Canterbury both suffered, down 3.4 per cent and 1.5 per cent respectively.

The biggest fall was in the South Island (excluding Canterbury), which slumped 13.3 per cent.

Ben Wallace, a spokesman for MBIE, said there had been an upward trend in skilled vacancies over the year.

"However, there are regional disparities, with Canterbury, Auckland and the rest of the North Island (excluding Auckland and Wellington) growing, while other regions have declined," he said.

Vacancies for skilled workers in Auckland have increased 4.7 per cent this year, and Canterbury by 4.5 per cent.

Employment site Seek.co.nz last week released job ad figures for the second quarter of the year, showing 91,000 jobs were posted in the four months to August.

That was nearly 8,000 more than in the first quarter of the year and white collar industries were the big standout in the period.

Meanwhile, another report out yesterday indicated workplaces were continuing to face a shortage of quality talent.

The Michael Page NZ Salary & Employment Forecast found 48 per cent of surveyed employers expected a professional skills shortage in the next 12 months.

"New Zealand continues to be impacted by a shortage of professional talent across a range of industries, and employers are tightening their focus on attraction and retention strategies as a result," said regional director Pete Macauley.

More than 50 per cent thought the skills shortage would cause salaries to rise above inflation.

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