Queensland unveils new employer guide to address labour shortages

Image credit: qld.gov.au

Minister for Multicultural Affairs Leanne Linard has revealed an updated manual for employers to address the critical skill shortages that Queensland’s engineering industry has been experiencing as a result of massive infrastructure investment and shifting labour market demographics.

Dubbed “Attracting and Retaining Engineers from Migrant Backgrounds: A Guide for Employers,” the guide was developed in collaboration with the Queensland Government, Engineers Australia, and Consult Australia.

The government emphasised the need for a new employer guide, pointing out that Queensland already has one of the nation’s tightest labour markets and that the situation is likely to worsen given the state’s anticipated economic development and demand for qualified workers.

The minister said the guide is focused on assisting employers in attracting, retaining, and supporting engineers from migrant backgrounds who are here in Queensland or who are ready to relocate interstate to fill these gaps.

“We want to break down barriers by providing practical tips, advice and information for employers so they can better access the incredible pool of skills and knowledge available right here in Queensland,” Mr Linard stated. 

Minister for Employment and Small Business and Minister for Training and Skills Development Di Farmer said it is vital that the government access all talent pools to satisfy industry workforce demands, so that the government will see “people with the right skills in the right job which is at the heart of any thriving Queensland industry.”

“Queenslanders from migrant and refugee backgrounds with engineering qualifications and skills can make significant contributions to businesses and can be part of the solution to workforce shortages currently being faced across the sector,” Mr Farmer stated. 

Meanwhile, Engineers Australia General Manager Stacey Rawlings is very hopeful that the upcoming ten years will bring major infrastructure investment and demographic changes in the labour force.

“We are proud to have partnered in the development of this guide which will support Queensland’s engineering sector to access local and global skills to meet the demands of today and long into the future,” Rawlings said. 

Kristine Banks, Queensland manager of Consult Australia, said the guide will help employers bridge the knowledge gap with practical strategies that will open doors to more skilled migrants who are not currently working in the occupation they are skilled in.

“We know there are increasing demands on our labour market – this tool will help us fill those gaps while proactively breaking barriers for our migrant communities,” Ms Banks concluded.