Territory Stories

The Northern Territory news Sat 10 Sep 2011



The Northern Territory news Sat 10 Sep 2011

Other title

NT news


The Northern Territory news; NewspaperNT




This publication contains may contain links to external sites. These external sites may no longer be active.




Community newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin; Australian newspapers -- Northern Territory -- Darwin

Publisher name

Nationwide News Pty. Limited

Place of publication



Copyright. Made available by the publisher under licence.

Copyright owner

Nationwide News Pty. Limited



Parent handle


Citation address


Page content

4 NT NEWS. Saturday, September 10, 2011. www.ntnews.com.au P U B : N T N E W S D A T E : 1 0 -S E P -2 0 1 1 P A G E : 4 0 4 C O L O R : C M Y K CAREERONE.COM.AU l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l l ntnews.com.au Six steps to follow SKILLS SHORTAGE 70 per cent of organisations in Australia are already experiencing skills shortages: 82 per cent of the public sector 73 per cent of large organisations 64 per cent of small business 62 per cent of medium organisations 60 per cent of not-for-profit organisations H AYS Recruitment hosted a seminar about skills shortages in the workplace at NT Parliament House. Hays director Kathy Kostyrko joined forces with Department of Training and Education executive director Kim Jenkinson and Hays NT regional director Simon Lance late last month to talk about overcoming skills shortages and securing top talent. Ms Kostyrko said there are six strategies employers can apply on a daily basis to help meet human resource needs: Step 1. Be flexible in order to adapt to the changing market. This includes considering existing employees, who are not only a rich source of information but who have also already demonstrated their commitment and fit with the organisation. Other flexible strategies include considering transferable skills and recruiting based on candidate potential. Such flexibility helps to open a vacancy to a larger pool of candidates who have experience, suit the company and can become a valued asset with a little training. In addition, embracing flexible working options allows an organisation to retain critical skills and widens the pool oftalent to include those that need flexibility to remain in the workforce. Step 2. Have a plan to identify the key roles and likely requirement patterns in your organisation. At the most basic level, this means examining where you are heading and comparing this to the skills and the skill gaps you currently have within your organisation. Recruitment planning, the development of a succinct process, a tailored offer, the effective use of temporary assignments and mobile technology should also be part of the planning process. Step 3. Create an employment brand to attract candidates aligned to your values. If in doubt about this strategy, consider BRWs Great Place to Work list; organisations on this list have strong employment brands and despite widespread skills shortages they receive unsolicited applications from people who want to work for them. Step 4. Source far and wide and include the underutilised talent pools of overseas skills, mature-age candidates, female candidates and former employees. In addition to these underutilised talent pools, new technology is also a factor in a comprehensive search. Step 5. Training and development involves open communication with staff and upskilling existing employees to build a more talented workforce capable of handling the required workflow. But training doesnt always have to be in the classroom. Step 6. Focus on retention and start with the benchmarking of great performers, then recruit to these criteria. A retention plan also includes training people well, career development, succession planning and engagement. Also critical is assessing managers; people join companies and leave. Skills shortage is amajor crisis for NT businesses Two-thirds of company executives say they have difficulty in filling vacancies T HE skills shortage is prevalent throughout the Territory and many industries are seeking talented employees. Hays director Kathy Kostyrko says the skills shortage is now the greatest long-term economic challenge facing the NT. According to Australian Industry Group and Deloitte research, one-third of company executives say the risk of skills shortages restricting the effective operation of their business is high or extreme and two-thirds have difficulty in filling vacancies. According to Ms Kostyrko, industries with critical skills shortages in Darwin are: o Accountancy and finance: Financial and business analysts are sought to analyse business trends and assess growth potential as the economy moves forward. Finance managers, financial controllers, financial accountants, credit controllers and accounts receivable staff also are needed. o Architecture: The increasing use of Revit software con tinues to create demand for candidates with strong Revit working experience. Health architects and planners are also wanted. o Construction: Fee-earning candidates such as estimators, senior contract administrators and project managers who can either bring work with them or who have strong trade links are in high demand. o Energy: Demand remains high within transmission and distribution and in particular the primary and secondary substation design areas as large capital works programs create projects. o Engineering: An increase in mining projects has fuelled demand in building services for electrical engineers at the senior level and for specialist fire engineers. Within heavy industrial, bulk materials handling drafters and designers as well as mechanical engineers are needed. o Facilities management: Senior managers within contract management, commercial building management and projects are needed. o Human Resources: Learning and development professionals are needed due to an increased focus on employee development and retention. HR project consultants are also needed, while upcoming changes in legislation have created increased demand for occupational health and safety professionals. o Information technology: Across the development space there is a demand for candidates with experience across ms.net 4.0. There has also been an increasing demand for professionals with iPhone/Android and mobile web development skills. o Office Support: Sales reporting, KPI monitoring and order processing skills are sought. Candidates experienced in SAP, Oracle and Pronto and with excellent communication and interpersonal skills are also in high demand. o Property: Given new budgets, demand has risen for retail project managers, residential and retail property managers, valuers and client side project managers. o Resources & Mining: There is still strong demand for mining professionals with openpit mining experience, including mine planners, engineers and surveyors. Other areas of demand are sales and marketing and trades and labour. Its a job allowing women a fairer go Womenwishing to return towork, remain an under utilised group Hays director Kathy Kostyrkos views on the importance of women in the workplace: Women are one of four under-utilised talent pools that employers can access to help fill their skills gap. According to a Harvard Business Review survey on gender-parity initiatives, both men and women aspire to be senior leaders, but fewer women make it. Rather than losing women from the workforce, we should develop strategies to ensure this talent pool can remain in employment. Research conducted in 2008 by Hays for the Equal Opportunity for Women in the Workplace Agency (EOWA), found that women in the Australian labour force, including women wishing to return to work, remain an under-utilised group of skilled workers. One of the most interesting findings was that both women and men feel employers are failing to provide workplaces that enable women to fully participate. When asked to list the top three challenges facing women in the workplace, 24 per cent of men said women must work harder to gain equality and respect among peers, 31 per cent said women struggle against boys clubs and 20 per cent mentioned the difficulty of balancing their work and family commitments.