28 July 2010

Recruiters warn of skills shortage if Australian immigration is reduced

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Immigration stances of both major parties are cause for concern, recruiters have said.

Australian Visa

Recruiters are warning of an IT skills shortage if Australian Visa numbers are reduced.

While both Prime Minister Julia Gillard and opposition leader Tony Abbott have vowed during the election campaign to cap annual migration, recruiters are warning that Australia could face a skills shortage.
 
The IT recruitment sector in particular is predicting a major skills shortage and is calling for a larger intake of overseas IT workers.

Professional Recruitment Australia chief executive Jane Bianchini said Australia was approaching one of the tightest skilled labour markets in recent history and tightening skilled migration would only make recruitment of workers more difficult.

Large national resource and technology projects such as the national broadband network has seen demand for skilled labour high-tech and engineering fields far exceed supply, she said.

Peoplebank chief executive Peter Acheson said the IT sector would face a talent shortage by the end of the year, with pressure already emerging in Sydney and Melbourne.

Mr Acheson said if immigration policy meant a tightening of Australian skilled migration, all of corporate and government Australia would be concerned because not only does it hamper the country's future, but it arguably makes it unsustainable.

The recently released Michael Page Technology salary and employment forecast shows that 51 per cent of employers are planning to hire IT staff over the next six months.

The technology forecast surveyed more than 800 senior managers, showing that 39 per cent of employers believe an IT skills shortage will be an issue for their business within a year.


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