Professor Peter Dawkins AO, Director of Jobs and Skills Australia will Address the National Press Club of Australia.
Over the last two years Australia has experienced widespread skills shortages reminiscent of the 1960’s. Looking forward, digitalisation, the growing care economy and the decarbonisation agenda will have a huge impact on skills needs over the next thirty years. Jobs and Skills Australia’s first Annual Jobs and Skills Report examines Australia’s skills needs and the adequacy of the national skills system in meeting those needs. Current skill shortages are analysed, employment projections for the next ten years are presented, and findings of Jobs and Skills Australia’s Clean Energy Capacity study summarised.
Analysis of Jobs and Skills Australia’s Skills Priority List reveals remarkable persistence in many skill shortages. Further analysis reveals diverse causes of skill shortages that will require pulling different levers to alleviate them. This will involve varying combinations of increasing the throughput of the training system; reformed education and training and increased work experience; reform of jobs and their remuneration and career structures; and supplementation, where appropriate, by migration.
This is the start of a process of Jobs and Skills Australia working with business, unions, education and training sectors, state and federal governments, and Australia’s ten new Jobs and Skills Councils to develop a National Jobs and Skills Roadmap towards a world class, joined-up national skills system. The aim is for vocational education, higher education and migration to complement each other and operate in a collaborative and cooperative way. Jobs and Skills Australia will go on to monitor the progress along the Roadmap that will enable Australia to meet its skills needs and play its part in minimising unemployment, increasing productivity, participation, real wages and sustainable economic growth, while increasing equity and reducing disadvantage.