With 38.5% of local businesses reporting difficulties finding skilled staff, the statewide skills shortage is hitting Central Coast businesses hardest.

Business confidence remains positive despite being slightly down on last quarter, according to NSW Business Chamber’s latest Business Conditions Survey, which canvassed more than 1000 businesses across a number of topics.

“Current perceptions of the State’s economic performance remain upbeat, with more respondents indicating positive perceptions of the economy relative to those that perceive a weaker environment,” says Chief Executive Officer Stephen Cartwright.

“While confidence is down from the previous quarter, this is typical of the first quarter of the calendar year. What is potentially concerning is the significant drop-off in revenue and profits which could start to impact on expansion plans.
 
“This should serve as a reminder that we cannot take our success for granted and that we must continually push the envelope in making NSW the most competitive place to do business.”

The survey also showed that access to skills is a growing issue for businesses, with the number of business indicating they did not have access to suitably skilled staff increasing significantly. Accommodation, food services and manufacturing were among the sectors most affected.

“Businesses in regional NSW continue to report greater difficulty in accessing skilled staff when compared with their Sydney counterparts, with the gap increasing considerably over the last quarter,” Cartwright said.

The skills shortage is currently hitting the Central Coast hardest of all regions across NSW, with 38.5% (up 23.8%) of businesses reporting difficulties finding skilled staff. Murray Riverina and New England North West came in second and third places, with 37.9% (up 10.1%) and 37.7% (down 0.6%) reporting difficulties respectively.

Planning for the future
The future of business in the region is on the agenda of the Central Coast Innovation Summit, which will be held at Mingara Recreation Club in Tumbi Umbi on June 8.

The Summit will bring together some of Australia’s leading leadership thinkers to explore major emerging trends likely to impact Australian companies and examine ways to take advantage of the opportunities they present.

For more information or to book, click here.

Central Coast Council is also looking for input from local businesses into its new Community Strategic Plan (CSP) for the region. The CSP will capture the community’s vision for the Central Coast Community and identify economic, social and environmental priorities and long term strategies. A collaborative plan, it will be developed and delivered with government agencies, business and community. 

To get involved, jump onto Your Voice Our Coast to share your thoughts and ideas. 

Businesses in regional NSW continue to report greater difficulty in accessing skilled staff when compared with their Sydney counterparts, with the gap increasing considerably over the last quarter.