Skills shortage holding back Australian businesses

A serious skills shortage is hampering business growth and opportunity in Australia with new research finding that Small to Medium Businesses (SMEs) cannot find the right staff to grow their company.

  • 48% of SMEs believe there is a clear skills shortage in their sector.
  • 68% of Australian SMEs worry Australia isn’t properly training our workers.


Soft skills for business success

Australian workforce has a strong soft-skill base, yet demands for soft skills still exceeds supply by up to 45%. Soft-skill intensive occupations expected to account for two-thirds (63%) of all jobs in Australia by 2030, according to the report Soft skills for business success report by Deloitte Access Economics. company.

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Nothing soft about the key skills

The Boston Consulting Group's global practice leader, digital and technology transformation in the public sector, Miguel Carrasco says of his own organisation: "We've always recruited for soft skills. Domain expertise is something you acquire over time by working in the same industry.

"The demand for expertise is as strong as ever so we won't see technical domain skills replaced by soft skills but perhaps what we're seeing in the broader economy is the elevation of some of the soft skills as not greater but of equal importance as other skills."


Soft skills training can and does work, new research shows

Working with Shahi Exports, a garment manufacturer, they ran a randomized controlled trial across five Bangalore factories. Not only did their training program prove effective, the benefits extended to both the company and its employees...The results are pretty astounding. The soft skills training program returned approximately 250 per cent on investment within eight months of concluding. So it more than paid for itself, mostly through increases in staff productivity. The other factors included increased retention during the training, and short-term gains in improved attendance.


6 job-ready soft skills you need to succeed

“To be job-ready, you need to offer a complete package of advanced technical skills, which remain in high demand, as well as progressive soft skills,” says Nick Deligiannis, Managing Director of Hays in Australia & New Zealand.



Using enterprise skills to land my dream job (for now)

Navigating these shifts requires a portfolio of skills and capabilities which enable us to move between jobs more easily — including transferable enterprise skills and career management capabilities.



Soft skills are increasingly attractive to organisations. So why haven’t job seekers received the memo? 

Employers desperately want soft skills – but the workforce hasn’t caught up yet.

Data from Workible and LinkedIn show that 69 percent of HR decision makers in Australia and New Zealand reported that the top reason (45 per cent) they found it difficult to fill leadership roles was due to a lack of soft skills among job applicants.

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