Advice to the Tertiary Education Commission

Advice provided by the Manawatū–Whanganui RSLG to the Tertiary Education Commission (TEC) in April 2023 to inform supplementary guidance and investment for 2024.

Whanganui River looking west - Manawatū-Whanganui

Whanganui River looking west

Regional Skills Leadership Groups (RSLGs) are part of a joined-up approach to labour market planning that will see our workforce, education and immigration systems working together to better meet the differing skills needs across the motu. They are a fundamental part of the drive to build productive, inclusive, sustainable and resilient regions.

RSLGs have the ability to inform the TEC investment of tertiary education organisations in 2024 through the provision of specific regional advice. This report is the vehicle for this advice.

About this advice 

Broadly, this advice will include:

  • key labour shortages in Manawatū-Whanganui and the 7 districts within
  • an overview of current engagements with relevant Workforce Development Councils and Tertiary Education Organisations around tertiary education related activities
  • tertiary education specific advice as it relates to direct investment for TEC.

This advice is in support of the Regional Workforce Plan, which includes a wealth of qualitative data as it relates to the first sector area of focus for the Manawatū-Whanganui RSLG; the kaiāwhina health workforce.

Manawatū–Whanganui Regional Workforce Plan

The release of the 2023/24 Regional Workforce Plan will cover the additional areas of the seasonal aspects of the horticulture industry, and the freight, logistics and warehousing sector.

With 7 distinct districts, the Manawatū-Whanganui region has distinct challenges and opportunities when it comes to tertiary education provision and uptake. The region boasts a high-level of highly skilled workers compared to the national level (38.8% vs 38.4% respectively), the region also has a high level of low-skilled workers compared to the national level (35.4% and 34.9% respectively). At a district-level, variances to skill levels are also noted, with 38.1% of workers classified as highly skilled in Rangītikei and 34.4% in Horowhenua. Despite the high level of skilled kaimahi, the region’s productivity lags behind the national average (2.1% vs. 2.3% respectively), and with increasingly high levels of investment and growth within the region’s main industries, there is an opportunity to close these gaps.

This report will draw on relevant labour market statistics and projections, paired with knowledge and advice from employers, iwi, unions, local and central government, Workforce Development Councils and other labour market influencers.

While the primary purpose is to inform the TEC on the RSLGs recommended investment in the region, the RSLG welcomes training providers, industry and kaimahi to use this information to make informed decisions around training pathways and skills attainment.

Last updated: 22 June 2023