2023 Skills Shortage Survey: good talent is even harder to find

2023 Skills Shortage Survey: good talent is even harder to find

The EMA (Employers and Manufacturers Association) Skills Shortage Survey for 2023 has just been released. 543 businesses across 17 different sectors throughout New Zealand responded to the survey.

The results are sobering – it was found that:

  • A staggering 90% of businesses are struggling to fill vacancies.
  • 30% of businesses had been advertising for vacancies for over 6 months. That’s a really long time to have key skills missing from a business.
  • 44% of respondents said that the situation in terms of filling vacancies and talent gaps has worsened in the last 6 months – with just 22% saying that things have improved.
  • 71% of respondents said that highly skilled jobs were the hardest to fill.
  • 71% of businesses are lacking in people with technical skills.
  • 72% of job applicants are lacking in basic digital skills.
  • Work readiness skills are a considerable issue, with communication skills (83%), initiative (73%), teamwork (66%) and problem solving (66%) being at the top of the list.
  • There’s been a huge decrease in literacy skills since last year: 44% of businesses and job applicants are lacking in literacy skills in the 2023 survey, compared to 22% last year.
  • Similarly, there’s also been a huge decrease in numeracy skills: 43% of businesses and job applicants are lacking numeracy skills this year, compared to 19% last year.

What are businesses doing to combat the on-going skills shortage?

The shortage of skilled workers in New Zealand isn’t a new phenomenon; and the survey reveals the situation is getting worse. So it’s important that businesses have strategies in place to overcome these challenges. Here’s what NZ businesses are doing:

  • 71% of respondents are investing in training and upskilling current employees to close any knowledge gaps.
  • 47% of employers are recruiting from overseas – with the Accredited Employer Work Visa (AEWV) being the most popular route, with 87% using this pathway.
  • 39% are implementing youth engagement/apprenticeships and similar programmes.

Is your business planning to recruit from overseas?

If international recruitment isn’t on your radar yet, it definitely should be if you’re struggling with skills shortages and recruiting talented workers. There’s a good chance your competitors are already doing this, or are looking into it.

Besides, there’s no point in missing out on business growth just because something seems too hard – especially when you have RecruitNZ and our People Inc partners here to take care of the whole process for you, from start to finish. Here’s an overview of what’s involved with international recruitment.

At RecruitNZ, we love recruiting workers from the Philippines, as they tend to have exceptional skills, good work ethics, and generally fit in very well with the NZ workforce. Find out why we like to hire from the Philippines.

The very first step in hiring skilled migrants – from the Philippines or any other country – is to become an accredited employer. Read more about employer accreditation, and yes, that’s a process we can most definitely help you with.

For those already recruiting skilled migrants

If you need any help in streamlining your international (or domestic) recruitment processes, whether it’s the interview and selection procedure, trade testing, work visas, or any of the documentation involved, please get in touch to see how we could help.

What our clients say about RecruitNZ

“Our Concrete Company engaged the services of Recruit NZ to help us find some Filipino concrete contractors to join our busy company. We have been extremely happy with the process that Recruit NZ has in place and we felt fully informed of what was happening the whole way through this journey. It is not a quick process and we could not have done this without a company like Recruit NZ on board to sort out all the legal requirements needed to employ someone from the Philippines. We are also thankful for the ongoing support we have had from Recruit NZ in helping out with the transition for the Filipino guys into our business. We would recommend this process to anyone looking to employ someone from the Philippines as we are more than happy with our 2 new workers. We are now looking to employ a few more candidates in the near future to help us grow our company.”

Jodie Wallen - Wallen Concreting Ltd

Contact us to find out how we can help your business.

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Tanya Gray is your strategic HR partner, passionate about driving clients’ productivity with innovative solutions and collaboration.

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