With 30 plus years focusing on the recruitment of Engineering Trades particularly in Victoria, it was interesting to read the December 2015 Labour Market Report for Engineering Trades in Victoria from the Department of Employment’s Labour Economics Office that highlights a significant decrease in the number of training completions of Certificate III or higher for the 2015 of 800 which seems a significant decline from 1164 in 2014.
Although no surprises to any of us involved in Engineering Trades and employment, I think this report highlights that the future ability to successfully recruit Engineering Trades for vacancies will continue to be challenging for employers exemplified by the statistics that only 68% of the vacancies in 2015 for Engineering Trades in Victoria where reported as being filled in comparison to 80% in 2013 and the large percentage of 82% of applications for vacancies are unsuitable.
With 92% of employers stating that a ‘formal trade qualification is a minimum requirement’ it is reasonable to expect that the 2015 average of 1.6 suitable applications to the 15.5 application will in the long run further deterioration once the short term effect of the availability of trades labour due redundancies with the closures of car manufacturing industry subsides and the significant decrease in training completions for Engineering Trades.
I think we all know that we are faced with firstly the challenge of creating new training opportunities for Engineering Trades occupations with the flow on effect of the car industry and then secondly the challenge to attract trainees to Engineering Trades roles who can successfully obtain completion. As stated by this report, many employers reported multiple attempts to obtain suitable applicants for their roles. The likely implications of these multiple attempt are cost of lost productivity let alone the cost burden of advertising and screening unsuitable candidates. This supports RPR Trades long term strategy of focusing on particular industry sectors such as Engineering Trades to minimise these effects by a focused strategy of establishing talent pools to quickly identify candidates who are either actively or passively seeking alternative employment opportunities to their current employment. It will certainly be interesting to monitor the trend of proportion of vacancies filled for Engineering Trades over the next 5 years.