Our workforce aspirations

Developed collectively by our Otago RSLG, our aspirations capture what the group hopes our region’s labour market will become.

Our aspirations focus the group’s energy into the areas where they believe there is the biggest opportunity to affect change. Our subsequent actions are then based around interventions designed to address each of these overarching aspirations.

Through these aspirations, we commit to working towards enabling Otago to strategically plan for its current and future skills and workforce demands, taking into account factors such as our diverse and rapidly changing society and our changing climate. The Otago RSLG recognises that these changes will evolve as everyone in Aotearoa New Zealand continues the journey to honour Te Tiriti, which guides the nation to deliver on its potential to all citizens, across generations.

Our overarching aspiration is:

to develop an equitable, responsive, and sustainable labour market system that supports everyone in Otago to thrive.

View across steep tussock-covered hills towards a small bay

Pilot’s Beach Towards The Otakou Marae. Image Supplied By Aukaha (1997) Ltd

Aspiration 1: Whole of region coordination

We will be a conduit for effective regional coordination in Otago’s labour market. To achieve this, the RSLG will collaborate across the region to ensure the workforce in all communities have the right skills and capabilities to meet current and future labour market demands, including working with mana whenua and Māori entities to focus on their particular labour market opportunities.

This aspect of our mahi aims to see strategic opportunities in the labour market realised by facilitating mutual commitment and partnerships, through agreed collective impact and the consistent influencing of key stakeholders. We will ensure that the future labour market will be prepared for the skills they need.

In progressing this, we will produce robust analysis that draws on rich sources of data and knowledge to measure progress towards desired results.

Aspiration 2: Transformational change in education

Otago is a region of education. We aspire towards everyone in Otago having visibility of all the career options available to them, as well as access to the support they need to navigate transitions within education and into employment.

We want our rangatahi to have full visibility of career pathways and learning options available to them before leaving school. We also want to establish benchmarks for what workforce-ready skills people should have at every stage throughout their schooling years.

Key to this is ensuring that nobody is left behind – we will support system changes that enable Māori and Pasifika students, as well as other priority groups, to succeed in our education system.

This aspiration is pertinent given that our RWP informs government investment in the education system. We want this system to be more informed by industry and learner needs, providing greater alignment with the skills we need as a region.

Aspiration 3: Building capability across the labour market 

We will build capability across the labour market. In doing this, the Otago RSLG will focus on eliminating the barriers that hold people back from accessing the training opportunities they need to fully participate – and respond to changes – in work.

We will ensure that our regional responses to skills needs are agile, and that we assist training providers to engage with workplaces to embed new, improved models of managing their operations and workforces. We will work to ensure that the next generation of leaders in our training providers and workplaces, adopt a practice of continuous upskilling and therefore equip the workforce to have the right skills when needed. We want Otago to be an exemplar region for preparing its workforce to deal with digital disruption, the e-economy and other future changes such as climate change and decarbonisation.

Secure in the knowledge that living Te Tiriti partnership will benefit all in the Otago labour market, we also want to ensure te ao Māori is embedded, including utilising mātauranga Māori, in workplaces and education throughout the region.

Aspiration 4: Quality (and equality) of life

Our fourth and final aspiration centres around enabling our communities and whānau to live well in vibrant and well-serviced communities across all parts of Otago.

Creating even greater ‘liveability’ in Otago means workplaces supporting workers with flexible working options so they can balance work with life and play. It also includes fair wages to enable decent living standards and ensuring that our workplaces are safe, culturally strong and inclusive as well as somewhere where wellbeing is valued and supported.

Improved physical and digital connectivity between Otago’s sub-regions will also assist in improving the quality of people’s lives and their ability to work, as will improved accessibility to appropriate housing and social services. Removing barriers to labour market participation for the current under-utilised workforce will also enhance workforce opportunities for the region.

It is also recognised that effective climate change mitigation initiatives are key to our ongoing quality of life.