2018 is shaping as being a busy year in the recruitment landscape of Townsville and North Queensland. 2015 and 2016 were somewhat dormant years for the North’s recruitment. Business confidence was low, as were job numbers. Unemployment spiked out to close to 15%.
2017 though has been a much brighter, transitional year, with a number of key projects being confirmed and business confidence swelling. We were coming off a low base with high unemployment, so roles remained comparatively easy to fill. There were lots of quality candidates looking.
Regional unemployment presently sits at 9.1%, and a number of those large projects that injected business confidence into NQ have yet to really kick off in earnest. Projects like the stadium build, Adani, the port expansion, the Burdekin pipeline – all will require large numbers of people across a wide array of skillsets.
This also has secondary impacts for a vast number of other businesses. More customers with more cash to spend makes for busy business conditions. And so many businesses across the North are still running incredibly lean having cut costs and hunkered down during 2015 & 2016. They too will need more people.
So here at TP Human Capital we’re forecasting unemployment to drop down to 5-6% during 2018. Positions will become very hard to fill and that in turn will drive upward pressure on salaries. It also makes it all the more critical that companies are really focused on staff retention.
Author Greg Pankhurst – Recruitment Consultant