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Randstad Calls for Investment in Skills

Randstad Calls for Investment in Skills

Future investment in training and development critical to the New Zealand economy

Thursday, 19 May 2011 – Randstad New Zealand’s General Manager, Paul Robinson, welcomed the efforts of the Government to address national debt repayment in its 2011/2012 Budget, but is calling for ongoing investment in training and development to ensure New Zealand’s return to long term economic prosperity.

“Schools and early childhood education will receive a $1.4 billion increase in funding over the next four years, and we would expect a percentage of that to go towards the training and development of teachers and administrators. Not only will this improve the education system, it will help engage more workers in the sector,” said Mr Robinson.

The announcement will also see further training and development opportunities for workers in the healthcare industry, with the Government announcing it has earmarked an extra $1.7 billion for growth in this sector between 2011/2012 and 2014/2015.

“With an increasing skills shortage in a number of sectors, employers are finding it progressively more difficult to find workers with the right skills to support future growth. The education and healthcare sectors will welcome the financial boost announced today. Jobseekers looking for employment in these areas may see this budget announcement as a relief with the potential for more jobs to be created,” said Mr Robinson.

Mr Robinson said New Zealand could take a greater lead from its Australian neighbours, who have committed to a $AUD3 billion investment in training across all industry sectors. “While the New Zealand government has wisely chosen to focus this budget on debt recovery, the increasing skills shortage will need to be given careful consideration in the future.”

However, changes to KiwiSaver are likely to hit the pockets of both employees and employers, with the Government announcing people will need to contribute more of their own money to the scheme. Individuals and employers will have to contribute a minimum of 3 per cent, up from 2 per cent with the current scheme.

“The good news is that the changes will not be implemented until 1 April 2013, giving both employers and employees almost two years to adjust and implement plans and strategies to manage the rising cost of the scheme,” added Mr Robinson.

ENDS

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