Projected regional skills outlook

This section has a predominant focus on forecasts that provide an indication of the skills required to fill the future workforce needs for the previous and current focus areas of the Hawke’s Bay RSLG – the Primary (Horticulture and Meat Processing), Construction & Infrastructure, and Health sectors.

This picture is created by looking at:

  • The size of the workforce (number of kaimahi)
  • Predicted job openings (brand new jobs and replacement jobs for kaimahi retiring or leaving the industry
  • The corresponding qualifications needed to fill new job openings (Level 1 to 7+)

This data is compared to 2022 current workforce information.

Health

Workforce pressures in the health sector are not new to Hawke’s Bay, and with a new public hospital planned for Hastings, these workforce pressures are expected to increase. There is ongoing demand on the Kaiawhina (unregulated) workforce across the aged care and community mental health and addiction services, with differing skill needs and increased patient workloads. Due to the importance of the sector and the health of kaimahi in all sectors a focus for the RSLG, this sector remains a focus.

Forecasts 2028

The Health Care and Social Assistance sector[1] for Hawke’s Bay is predicted to be 11,432 by the year 2028. This predicted growth will mean that the Health Care and Social Assistance sector will account for 12.1% of the regional workforce.

It is estimated that this sector will have 3,592 job openings over the next 5 years to 2028. This includes 950 new jobs and 2,642 replacement roles (roles previously filled by kaimahi who have retired or moved to a new sector).

In order to fill these job openings, the following predictions indicate the qualification requirements to match job openings:

Qualification level Number of people
Certificate (Level 1-3) 1,324
Certificate (Level 4) 130
Certificate (Level 5-6) 471
Degree (Level 7+) 1,665

Current 2022

The Health Care and Social Assistance workforce for Hawke’s Bay currently sits at 10,482, which is the third highest employing sector in the region (11.7% of the total workforce). Workers are estimated as being distributed across the following 6 areas set out in the table:

Area of work Number of workers
Personal Care Assistant 1,371
Registered Nurse (Medical) 1,353
Community Worker 413
Early Childhood (Pre-primary) Teacher 393
General Medical Practitioner 338
Age or Disabled Carer 308

Reflecting a national trend, the large majority (79.2%) of kaimahi in this sector identify as European, with only 18.3% identifying as Māori. There are slightly more kaimahi identifying as Asian (6.6%), than are represented across all industries in the region (5.6%). Only 15.4% of kaimahi identify as male in the health workforce in Hawke’s Bay (down from 19.4% in 2003).

Construction and infrastructure

Mounting workforce pressures in the Construction and Infrastructure sector are a result of significant public and private sector investment. This workforce pressure will be compounded by the repair and rebuild programme as a result of Cyclone Gabrielle. 

Social procurement, pre-employment programmes and leadership initiatives provide opportunities for growth, especially for the Māori kaimahi and businesses who operate in this sector. The Hawke’s Bay RSLG have heard that industry has absorbed as much inexperienced labour as they can, so attention needs to be focussed on upskilling and development of employer’s existing kaimahi, ensuring the new workforce supply are well-prepared for employment, and looking at different approaches to construction methods.

Forecasts 2028

The Construction sector[2] for Hawke’s Bay is predicted to be 10,025 by the year 2028. While this is similar to current levels, there is a strong rebound after an expected decline period from 2024 onward.

By 2028, it is estimated that this sector will have 1,988 job openings. It was forecast, prior to Cyclone Gabrielle that new jobs would reduce by 511 roles, while the sector would require 2,509 replacement job openings (job openings due to kaimahi retirement or moving to another sector). 

In order to fill these job openings, the following predictions indicate the qualification requirements to match job openings:

Qualification level Number of people
Certificate (Level 1-3) 645
Certificate (Level 4) 536
Certificate (Level 5-6) 215
Degree (Level 7+) 602

Note: These projections are likely to underestimate the overall need due to the impacts of Cyclone Gabrielle.

Current 2022

The Construction and Infrastructure workforce for Hawke’s Bay currently sits at 10,537, accounting for 7.5% of the total workforce. Workers are estimated as being distributed across the areas identified in the table:

Area of work Number of workers
Construction Trades Workers 1,874
Specialist Managers 1,719
Electrotech & Telecoms Trades Workers 756
Design, Engineering, Science Professionals 743
Construction and Mining Labourers 495

Reflecting a national trend, the large majority (84.9%) of kaimahi in this sector identify as European, with only 18.4% identifying as Māori. From 2013 to 2018 there was an increase in 641 more kaimahi identifying as Māori within the sector.

Only 18.6% of kaimahi identify as female in the construction and infrastructure workforce in Hawke’s Bay.

Primary sector

Notwithstanding the recent cyclone, Hawke’s Bay’s Primary Sector is the largest contributor to the region’s economy. While Hawke’s Bay had a significant economic reliance on horticulture, the impact of Primary Processing and wider farming practices deserve consideration in economic and workforce planning. Both the Horticulture and Primary Processing Industries struggle to attract and retain kaimahi. The Hawke’s Bay RSLG is continuing to work with industry to identify and support initiatives that address the barriers to creating sustainable workforces.

Forecasts 2028

The Food and Fibre Sector[3] in Hawke’s Bay is predicted to be 13,864, by 2028. This estimated figure would have the sector accounting for 14.7% of the total regional workforce.

Between 2022-2028, it is estimated that this sector will have 4,892 job openings. This estimate includes 1,080 new jobs and 3,812 replacement jobs (job openings due to kaimahi retirement or moving to another sector). 

Primary Manufacturing was not included in the ‘Food and Fibre workforce’ data; however, this industry is projected to be 5,160 by the year 2028. For new roles in 2028, over 65% will require a Certificate (Level 1-3), showing a significant shift in skills needs within the Primary Manufacturing Industry.

In order to fill these job openings, the following predictions indicate the qualification requirements to match job openings:

Qualification level Number of people
Certificate (Level 1-3) 2,838
Certificate (Level 4) 394
Certificate (Level 5-6) 256
Degree (Level 7+) 1,397

Current 2022

The Food and Fibre workforce for Hawke’s Bay currently sits at 12,784 people, which is a drop of 4.1% from 2021. Workers are estimated as being distributed across the 6 areas set out in the table below.

Area of work Number of workers
Mixed Crop and Livestock Farm Worker 874
Fruit or Nut Farm Worker 772
Fruit or Nut Grower 628
Mixed Crop and Livestock Farmer 558
Agricultural and Horticultural Mobile Plant Operator 433
Labourer 432

Pasifika account for 11.4% of the Food and Fibre workforce (but only 5.3% of the total reginal population). From 2013 to 2018 there has been a decrease of 11.2 percentage points of Europeans in the sector, and an increase of 5.2 percentage points for Māori in the sector.

45.4% of the sector report having no post-school qualifications in 2018 (down from 57.9% in 2013).

Within Primary Processing in particular, the following occupations make up the current workforce:

Top 4 primary processing occupations Number of workers
Meat Process Worker 599
Labourers 514
Slaughterer 307
Meat Boner and Slicer 188

Māori are significantly overrepresented in the Primary Manufacturing sector, making up 48.8% of the workforce in 2018 (compared to 22.4% of regional makeup). 24.7% of the Primary Manufacturing workforce report having no qualifications in 2018.

Footnotes

[1] For the purposes of this analysis, the Health Care and Social Assistance Sector includes employment in the following occupations: Hospitals, General Practice Medical Services, Specialist Medical Services, Pathology and Diagnostic Imaging Services, Dental Services, Optometry and Optical Dispensing, Physiotherapy Services, Chiropractic and Osteopathic Services, Ambulance Services, Aged Care Residential Services, Child Care Services and other Allied Health Services (Kaiāwhina).

[2] For the purposes of this publication the classification of Waihanga Ara Rau’s sector has been selected. This includes Construction (retail, on site and wholesale), off site manufacturing, electrotech & telecoms, finishing trades, access trades, plumbing, drain laying and gas fitting, civil infrastructure, three waters, energy and telecoms and construction and infrastructure services.

Waihanga Ara Rau(external link) — Construction & infrastructure Workforce Development Council

[3] This sector has been defined using the definitions from Muka Tangata – People, Food and Fibre Workforce Development Council. They represent 14 industries including dairy, sheep, beef, deer, pork, poultry, and other livestock farming; arable farming; vegetables and fruit growing; viticulture and winemaking; forestry; seafood; apiculture; equine, dogs and racing; veterinary; nursery, turf and gardening; and food and fibre support industries.

About us: Muka Tangata(external link) — People, Food and Fibre Workforce Development Council

Last updated: 24 July 2023