The Orana region is bucking a national unemployment trend with a figure of just 2.7%, according to the latest Small Area Labour Market data.
While low unemployment in the region reflects a stable economy, RDA Orana Director of Regional Development Megan Dixon said there is a critical labour shortage that needs to be addressed.
“At a time when we expect our numbers to be going up, the Orana region bucked national trends and the numbers went down,” she said.
“There are 591 vacancies in our region in a range of areas,” Mrs Dixon explained. “Employers are working harder to recruit, which can have a detrimental impact on their time efficiency and overall business operation which in turn has a ripple effect for productivity and supply of services.”
Mrs Dixon would like to see more action taken on a government level to shift the labour market in areas such as the Orana where core industries such as agriculture, mining, health, construction and manufacturing have continued during the COVID-19 pandemic and more workers are needed.
“Our region has dropped to 2.7%, with several Local Government Areas below 3%. While it is a good sign for employees, the issue remains critical for employers in the region.”
“It’s all about focusing on the issues being experienced, identifying gaps and promoting access to workforce.”
RDA Orana regularly communicates with the government regarding economic development and will be formalising the issue with a submission.
The Small Area Labour Markets (SALM) data has been compiled by the Australian Government Department of Jobs and Small Business (DJSB) incorporating the three primary datasets of Centrelink, the ABS Labour Force Survey and ABS Census of Population and Housing.