Job vacancies on rise in New Zealand

The number of jobs advertised online in New Zealand grew by 1.9 per cent in March 2014, following a 1.3 per cent decrease in February, according to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s latest Jobs Online report.

What’s more – over the past year, vacancies advertised increased by 18.4 per cent, while skilled vacancies increased by 16.5 per cent.

The monthly growth is largely driven by a bounce back of skilled vacancies in the healthcare and medical industry. These increased by 4.3 per cent in March, following a fall in February.

Skilled vacancies also increased in the sales, retail, marketing and advertising (up 2.0 per cent) and information technology (up 0.9 per cent) industries. The growth for the period is offset by decreases in other industries, with hospitality and tourism experiencing the largest fall of 2.6 per cent.

Skilled Vacancies Index (May 2007=100)

Annual figures however show a different picture for some of these sectors. The biggest yearly growth in skilled vacancies was in hospitality and tourism (up 36.7 per cent) and sales, retail, marketing and advertising (up 21.7 per cent) industries. The healthcare and medical industry (down 4.5 per cent) had the only decrease over the year to March.

Regionally, Canterbury (up 3.6 per cent) leads the growth in March, followed by Auckland (up 1.0 per cent). North Island (excluding Auckland and Wellington) experienced the biggest fall of 4.9 per cent.

Ministry Labour Market and Business Performance Manager David Paterson says the figures are consistent with the overall performance of the national economy and the labour market.

“Despite the monthly fluctuations, we can see a healthy trend in vacancies over the past year, across all regions and most industries,” he says.

The upward trend in vacancies over the past year is consistent with the results from the latest Quarterly Survey of Business Opinion. A net 29 per cent of firms found it difficult to find skilled labour, representing a 4.1 percentage point increase over the last year.


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