Regional skill needs
Accommodation and food services
Roles in accommodation and food services attract young and often less qualified staff. There is a strong reliance on migrants and a seasonal workforce into roles on the West Coast, particularly at peak times of the year. This results in a low employee retention rate.
Despite staffing pressures easing the sector is still struggling to attract trained chefs. There is also local demand for regional-specific storytelling to enhance the visitor experience.
- Hospitality and tourism training with a focus on chef training.
- Training that incorporates or focuses on local story telling.
- Micro credential for employability and soft skills that creates a pathway onto further study and can be offered across industries.
Health and social care assistance
There are currently approximately 50 FTE vacancies within nursing roles across the region. There are significant vacancies across much of allied health - physiotherapy, social work, occupational therapy, and laboratory, and also a lack of permanent and locum GPs. The Māori and Pacific workforces are also in great shortage, compromising access to healthcare for these population groups.
The region is highly reliant on tertiary provision from out of region. This includes shortages of more developed cultural skillsets that are urgently needed to grow and support kaimahi Māori and kaimahi Pacific.
- Micro credentialing and/or qualifications/units for registered and administrative staff.
- Training offered at high schools to enable a pathway into tertiary study, for example, Micro credential.
- Pre-health science papers delivered regionally.
- Programmes that support the kaiāwhina workforce.
- Training that enables the ability to complete distance learning. The Bachelor of Nursing, Enrolled Nursing, Return to Nursing and the 2-year master’s pathway are great opportunities to ensure education and training can be completed at, or close to a student’s home.
- Earn while you learn for nursing that could mean TEC-funded transition placements.
- Distance learning options for all tertiary qualifications. Studying at distance removes one of the major financial barriers to education and enables access to remote learning. This would potentially improve retention and collaboration, enabling more remote training of health professionals so they can remain in their local communities as much as possible.
- Enabling access for rural and remote populations for existing qualifications that cannot be delivered in the region. This could include ring fencing positions for people who come from rural and remote locations.
- A local hub to ensure support for employers and students. CAP and Allied Health Return to Work, particularly Physiotherapy return to work could be streamlined. Ongoing collaboration is the key to success.
- Pastoral care - Peer support for students not always available if only 1 student here on placement away from their colleagues. AHST may be a way to provide a remote framework for this.
- Initiatives that address attrition rates for Māori and Pacific people and enable success including postgraduation.
- Change of classification of programme related and student related costs to allow for travel, food, and accommodation to be covered for programme placements.
Approximately 25% of those working in the construction industry on the West Coast are self-employed. While the construction industry is expected to grow businesses and there are a few large construction projects planned for the region, on the ground businesses do not expect demand for staff to grow as significantly as projected by the 2028 Informetric forecasts.
Civil construction training is often in house and non-formal. Infrastructure jobs often require employees to operate various workplace machinery that requires a licence and endorsements. Technical roles are often the most challenging to recruit, for example, cable jointers, line mechanics and water treatment operators.
- Micro-credentials with learner-focussed modes of delivery.
- Initiatives that remove barriers to further study.
- Driver’s licences in schools.
- Plant operator training (including licence and endorsements).
In-house training is common across the manufacturing industry as training needs are often specific to bespoke machinery used by the business. Digital technologies are being integrated into larger business to improve productivity.
Food manufacturing companies are experiencing difficulties in attracting staff due to the lack of accommodation and a high minimum start out wage with staff wanting to work 4 days a week rather than 5.
There is a training gap in forestry for training of staff in middle management/leadership.
- Micro credentials that support the manufacturing industry.
- Initiatives that remove barriers to further study.
- Training that supports digital technologies.
- Leadership and management training.
Conservation and biodiversity
Te Tai Poutini West Coast is 84% public conservation land, the largest proportion of any rohe in New Zealand. Conservation (Nature Based) is an emerging industry on the West Coast. There is a desire to ‘Grow our Own’ people and staircase them to opportunities in the industry on the West Coast. A pipeline from high school onto tertiary study is currently lacking. Key stakeholders support the noted provision.
- Certificate in Conservation Skills (operations) Level 4
- Certificate in Pest Management Level 3
- Project Management Skills
- Geographic Information Systems
- Conservation Field Skills Training Scheme
- Regenerative Destination Management
- Pest and Predator Control Technologies
- Cultural Capability for Māori Tourism Guides
- Conservation Leadership
Food and fibre (Agriculture, horticulture, forestry, aquaculture)
The dairy industry is experiencing significant workforce shortages. Approximately 22% of the workforce are migrant workers and the industry does not have enough people with the right skills to meet workforce demand.
The sector is heavily reliant on people to operate with a significant component of their workforce in entry level positions. Gaps in labour exist around seasonal work while the number of people entering apprenticeships has fallen. Specific training needs include milk quality, health and safety, effluent, and animal welfare. micro credentials at diploma level covering the use of technology on farms to improve business processes such as the use of drones or halters.
- Introduction micro credentials that incorporate soft/transferrable skills that can also be delivered in schools to create a pipeline and pathway for students into the industry.
- Micro credentials that support compliance requirements.
- Micro credentials that support the use technology on farms to improve business processes.
- Training for migrant workers for ‘essential service’ industries.