Skills drought looming for construction, engineering sectors

Demand for skilled professionals across construction and engineering is set to escalate, as the recent floods in Queensland, New South Wales and Victoria place labour pressures on the already skills short industry.

According to the latest Clarius Skills Index, skills shortages in construction, engineering and building professionals and trades occupations continued to the end of 2010. The Clarius Skills Index, prepared by KPMG Econtech, measures the supply and demand of skilled labour.

The Index shows a shortfall of 4900 construction tradespeople, 600 building and engineering professionals and 100 building and engineering associate professionals in December 2010.

Phil Desmet, executive general manager of SouthTech, Clarius? engineering and building services division, warned that skill shortages are emerging in a number of key sectors.

?This will be heightened as aresult of flood recovery demands,?he said. ?While the demand from the floods is unknown, we expect it will be strongest in the mining and construction sectors. The biggest areas of demand will be for electrical engineers, while design skills will also be sought for transport related development such as rebuilding of highways and roads.?
Phil Desmet predicted promisesof infrastructure improvement policies made in the NSW election in March, coupled with the National Broadband Network, would add to the pressure for engineering and project management skills, sparking increased wage pressures.

Source: KPMG Econtech/Lighthouse Communications Group

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