Local insights report: February 2023

Marlborough's local insights report for February 2023.

Regional activities

Marlborough recently launched the skills attraction campaign #WELOVEITHERE

It is for roles paying $70,000 and over, and was run to coincide with the Marlborough Wine and Food Festival in February 2023. Local businesses joined forces with the Marlborough District Council, Marlborough Chamber of Commerce, Ministry of Social Development and Hortus to show visitors, and remind locals, of the amazing opportunities to build a career in Marlborough. The campaign included advertising with a brochure at the airport, ferry terminals, cafes and shops; and was also supported by a website, Instagram and a social media competition. Job opportunities showcased included engineers, IT professionals, accountants, project managers, environmental scientist, data analyst, logistics manager, teachers and a variety of roles in the wood processing, aquaculture and wine industries. The photo at left, taken at the Marlborough Wine and Food Festival, and featured on the Stuff news website, shows Alison from Oklahoma USA, Suvey from Mexico and Jess from California USA. Attracting people to Marlborough is one of the focus areas in the Marlborough Regional Workforce Plan – Te Mahere Ahumahi ā-Rohe o Te Tauihu o Te Waka-a-Māui.

A new Bachelor of Nursing will be available through flexible delivery in Marlborough

NMIT|Te Pūkenga is offering a new blended, flexible delivery approach for Marlborough students enrolling in the Bachelor of Nursing programme. From February 2023 first year students can attend video-conference lectures and some tutorials on the Marlborough Campus 3 days a week, and attend the remaining classes, labs and all practical sessions on the Nelson Campus 2 days each week. Students will also be able to complete their 4-week clinical placement locally in the second semester. The establishment and delivery of a Bachelor of Nursing course in Blenheim was a recommendation in the Marlborough Regional Workforce Plan – Te Mahere Ahumahi ā-Rohe o Te Tauihu o Te Waka-a-Māui.

Labour market opportunities

Te Kotahi o Te Tauihu Charitable Trust is seeking sustainable funding to continue their mahi

Te Kotahi was set up in February 2021 by the 8 iwi of Te Tauihu o Te Waka-a-Māui (top of the South Island) to advance health and wellbeing, alleviate poverty, ensure adequate food and housing is available and promote education and skills using a kaupapa Maōri approach. Te Kotahi have supported whānau through the Covid-19 pandemic, major flooding events on both sides of the Whangamoa Saddle and the rising cost of living. In the last financial year, the iwi work brokers worked with 107 whānau members, found employment for 51, supported 18 into training, and 17 were referred back to Work and Income. The lack of sustainable funding threatens the ability to continue this mahi. Sustainable funding would be ‘evergreen’ contracts rather than the current fixed term funding model. The RSLG has an action to advocate for Mā Māori, Mō Māori, ki a Māori solutions (for Māori, by Māori, with Māori) to workforce and skills issues.

NMIT|Te Pūkenga is not going ahead with the relocation from RNZAF Base Woodbourne to nearby Ōmaka airport

(As reported in the October 2022 local insights report).

Escalating costs, resource consent capacity limits and zero projected growth in student numbers for 2023 caused the decision. NMIT|Te Pūkenga acknowledges the shortage of skilled aviation staff and is committed to expanding aviation training. Unfortunately, this decision does not address the existing and projected skills shortages in aviation engineering or support Marlborough’s aspiration to unlock Marlborough’s potential and to build a productive and resilient economy that is well resourced by its workforce, skills and training.

The Marlborough region

  • More than 6 months on from the floods in August 2022 (and July 2021) many businesses and residents remain affected by damaged roads and limited or no access. This continues to impact the viability of business and the wellbeing of communities.
  • Jobseeker numbers in December 2022 (1,173) remain higher than pre-COVID levels (945 in December 2019). There is still some underutilisation in Marlborough’s tight labour market.

Our focus for the next 2 months

The focus for the Marlborough RSLG is implementing Te Mahere Ahumahi ā-Rohe o Te Tauihu o Te Waka-a-Māui | Marlborough Regional Workforce Plan.

Over the next t2 months the RSLG is also working on a Regional Workforce Outlook to provide investment advice to the Tertiary Education Commission for 2024.

Marlborough Regional Workforce Plan

Trends at a glance

  • 0.6%* Unemployment rate the lowest unemployment rate in the country for the December 2022 quarter (*this is an estimate only as the sample size is too small).
  • There are no figures for Māori, Underutilisation or NEET (Youth 15-24 not in employment, education or training) for the quarter due to the small sample size.
  • The lack of information on the unemployment rate for Māori is a concern because it affects the ability to monitor and respond to Māori unemployment.

As in previous quarters many of the figures for Marlborough are estimates or unable to be provided. The chart below shows the 10 year trend for the Unemployment Rate.  We cannot be certain what the unemployment rate is for Marlborough. However, it is clear from the chart that the overall trend over the last decade (following the recovery from the Global Financial Crisis in 2008) has been down and current levels appear to be the lowest in the last 10 years.

Marlborough unemployment rate – December quarters 2012 to 2022

Chart depicting showing Marlborough unemployment rate (%) for the December quarters of 2012 to 2022.

Source: Statistics New Zealand, Household Labour Force Survey, December 2022

The RSLG has 2 actions in Year 1 (2022 to 2023) to address this need:

  • Advocate for local data collection, presentation and insights that are relevant to Marlborough.
  • Advocate to central and local government for Māori/iwi data for Te Tauihu to ensure that there is an evidence base for interventions to inform planning and to identify gaps in service provision e.g. consistent data sets across agencies.

Prepared by the regionally led Marlborough Regional Skills Leadership Group.

For further information, please contact: MarlboroughRSLG@mbie.govt.nz

Last updated: 28 February 2023