Skills shortage near critical

Skill shortages appear to be reaching a critical level in the South Island while skilled vacancies advertised in the North Island continue to fall.

Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment figures released yesterday showed Canterbury and the rest of the South Island were the only two regions to show growth in online advertised skilled job vacancies.

Canterbury vacancies, as measured by the ministry, rose 0.2% in May from April.

In the rest of the South Island, vacancies increased by 0.6%. With North Island demand for skilled vacancies falling, the New Zealand total was a 2.7% fall in skilled job vacancies for the month.

However, annual figures showed Canterbury vacancies rising 10.2% and the rest of the South Island rising by 22.5%.

The annual increase in Auckland was 4.2%, Wellington had a fall of 2.5% and the rest of the North Island had a rise of 1%. Combined, that gave an annual rise of 4.4%.

The ministry report is part of a monthly series.

The highlights of the report showed the trend for online job vacancies was down in May with skilled jobs falling 2.7% while all vacancies falling by 2.6%.

Online advertisements for vacancies fell in all industry groups.

The largest falls were in accounting, human resources, legal and administration and information technology industries, all falling by 4.2%.

Vacancies fell in all occupation groups in May. The biggest month-on-month fall was for professionals, down 3.3%.

In the year ended May, the demand for environmental scientists, mixed crop and livestock workers and butchers and small goods makers grew.

The fastest growing occupations were in industries related to construction, agriculture and food manufacturing.

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