By Tanya O'Shea, IMPACT Community Services Managing Director

Stronger Together is a weekly column where Tanya explores key issues.  Today Tanya looks at the current job climate.

There has been much discussion in the community regarding the job market here in Bundaberg recently.

Here there is a contradictory and confusing situation. While some business owners are finding it hard to find suitable staff, record numbers of people are collecting unemployment benefits.

It is easy for some to conclude that “no-one wants to work”, but like most things it is more complicated than that.

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On any given day there are about 320 job vacancies advertised on Seek in the local area.

Competing for those positions are approximately 6000 jobseekers consisting of both the unemployed or under-employed (the situation where someone is working, but not enough hours to free themselves from social security) and those in full employment who are looking for a new opportunity.

There is also a misconception about the demographic of those looking for work; mature-aged people are almost as likely to be unemployed as the youth cohort.

With the job market so crowded, it makes sense and may be valuable for those not working to upskill, rather than feeling frustrated at home.

Find your purpose

It is important to find a purpose. The question for many, is upskill in what? What jobs and industries are in demand currently in Bundaberg?

Qualified chefs and short order cooks are always in demand.

Boilermakers and skilled welders are also highly sought after.

Currently, the agricultural industry is finding it difficult to attract labour due to the collapse of the backpacker workforce after prolonged border closures.  This is another place to consider employment.

Another industry that is often overlooked is the care industry. Aged care, disability care, home and community care and child care are increasingly on the lookout for good staff and offer a rewarding career for the right person.

If you want a vocation rather than just a job a Cert 3 is a good place to start.

If you are feeling inspired to study and would like more information on what is available check out our training courses.