Business going 'gangbusters' in Bay

By Victoria White

2 comments
Dickey Boats owners Tristian and Jason Dickey (right) with some members of their rapidly growing numbers of staff.
Dickey Boats owners Tristian and Jason Dickey (right) with some members of their rapidly growing numbers of staff.

When Dickey Boats started six years ago the business consisted of owners Jason and Tristian Dickey and one staff member.

Now the Napier-based business has 21 staff with five of these hired in the past year, and are still looking to take on more staff.

"It's important to offer great jobs and great opportunities in the Bay, whether for locals or those from somewhere else," co-owner Tristian Dickey said.

"There are good jobs and opportunities to develop here, and it's important people know they don't have to go to Wellington or Auckland to get a great job because they do exist here."

After an 18 month recruitment drive the business had recruited a fabrication employee, an operations manager, a customer service manager, a CAD draftsman, and a cabinet maker.

They were still looking for a senior boatbuilder and two others to support the workload, and a senior fit out technician.

But the thriving business wouldn't be stopping there.

"From there once we've got those senior people in place we'll be bringing in more people to work underneath them."

According to the latest ANZ data, Hawke's Bay is "going gangbusters" with a 22.6 per cent increase in job ads versus a year ago.

Tukituki MP Craig Foss said the increase in job ads was a fantastic result.

"Every recent economic survey and statistic is showing the same result: Hawke's Bay is really moving ahead, and the harvest season is only just beginning.

"Every industry is realising the benefits of free trade agreements, low interest rates and low inflation creating more jobs and more opportunities for our families."

Ikaroa-Rawhiti MP Meka Whaitiri said the jobs may be in a specific sector where specialised skills were required, and there were a number of people looking for jobs in the labour sector.

She said the area still had a huge problem "on our hands" with a number of people unemployed, or living on the minimum wage.

Business Hawke's Bay CEO Susan White said many businesses had been working on improving their business over the past few years.

"We're all delighted to see all that hard work that needs to happen to enable new jobs to be making an impact, it's fantastic.

"Every new job added to a business is an investment."

Hastings Business association manager Susan McDade said she had noticed an increase in businesses hiring.

"It all comes down to business confidence."

Icehouse business development manager Kate de Lautour specialised in working with small to medium Hawke's Bay businesses, and said there were a lot of projects on the go in the region.

"The market seems very productive, and they're taking the opportunity to develop new products, which will lead to new hires."

Job ads lifted a further 1.1 per cent in December, the fourth consecutive monthly rise of over 1 per cent month on month and the first time this has occurred since early 2011.

ANZ senior economist Sharon Zollner said: "The lift in job ads in recent months reflects a broad-based acceleration in the economy in the second half of last year.

"Stronger growth is now clearly encouraging firms to hire; that's a good sign for growth becoming more self-sustaining.

"Hawke's Bay is going gangbusters, with a 22.6 per cent increase in job ads versus a year ago. Auckland is a distant second with exactly half that rate of growth.

"Canterbury is dragging the chain with job ads down nearly 15 per cent year on year by the same measure."

Ms Zollner said they expected the unemployment rate to ease over 2016, subject to the normal caveat that growth prospects remain respectable.

Labour demand in Hawke's Bay continued to be exceptionally strong, with job ads up an astonishing 22.6 per cent year on year, by far the strongest growth since their data began in 2012.

- Hawkes Bay Today

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