The employment rate increased in February, as hiring for full-time positions surged. The number of new jobs added to the Australian economy slightly missed the forecast of 20,000, coming in at 17,500. Despite these results, the unemployment rate managed to creep up to 5.6% in February from 5.5% in January, as more and more people look to make changes in their careers.
We are seeing an increase in demand for National Account Manager and Category Manager roles, however, there is not enough talent to fill the gap. Businesses across the country are therefore turning to international talent. This is putting pressure on local businesses to look outside of local talent pools. We are also seeing retail talent entering suppliers in some cases - this will further diversify as the retail channel sees new entrants such as Kaufland and Lidl.
In April last year, the 457 Visa was abolished due to concerns that Australians were not being prioritised for Australian skilled jobs. Earlier this month, further changes were made as part of the official replacement. Some of these changes include increased requirements for employers to advertise jobs in Australia before reaching out to workers overseas, strengthened English language requirements and instituting a requirement for sponsored applicants to have at least two years of work experience (with some adjustments for specific occupations).
We have seen a number of senior moves in leading FMCG organisations which illustrates confidence in the market and organisations reviewing their logistic networks and 3PL partnerships. This means candidates with both 3PL and client-side logistics expertise are in high demand.
Organisations are keen to develop and mould talent from within to drive a culture of progression, development and opportunity. We are seeing businesses developing programs at MBA level as well as bachelor and graduate level. This has been effective in plugging gaps at a leadership level and bringing in commercial capability. An internal focus also creates greater opportunity to share talent cross functionally and build a diversity of skill sets within an organisation. Well managed, structured internal development programs are successfully creating high-performance cultures and consistently high technical capability within organisations.