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(AU) Skills hot shot

Skills shortages can, be met if workers transfer their abilities to new industries, writes Daniel Hoy.


TRADING UP: Cafe2U franchise owner Mark Andrews transferred his skills into the hospitality industry

The skills shortage is the hottest issue on the employ­ment landscape today. But what skills are in short­age? What jobs are available?

 A survey by Right Manage­ment finds these are questions that more than 50 per cent of Australian jobseekers ask. It shows 53 per cent of them wanted to change industries when moving into a new role, with 49 per cent turning that wish into a reality. To do so, they have a better chance by meeting skills vacancies in the industry and transferring skills they hold. Regional general manager Bridget Beattie says the trend towards industry moves has been growing for some time. "Jobseekers are becoming increasingly savvy about where their skills are rel­evant," Beattie says.

 To increase your chances:

KNOW what you can offer. Audit your skills. Pull together some examples of how those skills have been used in differ­ent fields and the experiences you have that would assist you in a new role in a new industry.

RESEARCH the industry. Show you understand the in­dustry you want to move into by reading widely for current events, trends, challenges and industry news.

ACKNOWLEDGE soft skills. When assessing your skills, make sure you include readiness to learn new skills.

Having a clear idea of your career goals and the learning and development required to get there will help prove to employers that you are both eager and well motivated, with a willingness to learn.

 A new government body is being fast-tracked to match workers to industries with high demand. The Skills Connect initiative will link apprentice­ship, workplace literacy and training programs.

 Cafe2U franchise owner Mark Andrews. 53. has transferred his skills into an indus­try in need, retraining as a barista after tiring of spending all day in an office. Andrews says it is easier for mature workers to gain new skills: "It is never too late to learn something new..."

This story appeared on 1 October 2011 in: The Herald Sun, the Daily Telegraph, The Courier Mail and the Adelaide Advertiser.