Regions lead jobs charge
The best chance of securing work is to look beyond the city limits, CareerOne Editor Cara Jenkin reveals.
THE top places to find jobs are proving to be in regional South Australia, where workers are needed to fill the thousands of vacancies created by strong economic growth led by the mining sector.
The heads of South Australia’s seven country Regional Development Australia organisations say many residents need to upskill to take on the work but new skilled residents also need to move to take up jobs in the regions.
Trade and health workers commonly are in demand but there also is a need for small businesses to establish in niche service industries.
Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations figures show the unemployment rate for South Australia outside Adelaide already is lower than that of the metropolitan area. It now stands at 4.8 per cent, compared with the Adelaide metropolitan average rate of 5.5 per cent.
Agriculture and food production offer just a slice of the regional employment which is available, with jobs up for grabs for any worker in any industry. Mining is leading the charge in demanding staff, which also leads to opportunities in construction and services.
Federal Jobs and Skills Minister Chris Evans has said it will be a challenge to get people into regional jobs that are not directly associated with the mining sector because of the ability for business to match the high wages on offer. It means skilled workers wanting work outside the sector will be snapped up.
RDA Murraylands and Riverland executive officer Brenton Lewis says there are many opportunities for skilled workers in regional SA.
They include diesel mechanics, which are needed in mining, transport, agriculture and manufacturing industries.
Getting long-term unemployed into jobs will be a particular focus for the Murraylands and Riverland regions, he says.
‘‘We’re certainly looking at upskilling and anything for small and medium business to take on someone who might work out to be a good employee,’’ he says.
The Riverland’s reliance on horticulture, viticulture and irrigated agriculture made it susceptible to the drought, so new businesses are being encouraged.
Many new workers will need to move to the region to support its population increase target of 7000 people.
‘‘It’s about attracting new busi- ness, expanding existing business or being innovative or different, integrating business – we’re trying as hard as we can to diversify the business in the Riverland,’’ Mr Lewis says.
Small-business owners also are encouraged for the Yorke and Mid North region.
RDA Yorke and Mid North executive officer Kelly-Anne Saffin says there are many services, such as finance, which are required by people and existing businesses in the regions.
‘‘In the hospitality industry, we have a particular need for cooks and chefs,’’ she says.
Workers with HR, heavy vehicle and forklift licences also are high in demand. RDA Whyalla and Eyre Peninsula executive officer Mark Cant says the emerging mining industry is providing employment in trades.
RDA Limestone Coast skills, career and workforce development manager Helen Strickland says many industries require new people to come to the region.
Opportunities await Motor Trade Association Group Training Scheme diesel mechanic apprentices Scott Montgomerie, left, and Jarden Stoetzer.