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Foreign workers answer skills shortage

Melbourne-based automation and process consultancy Mainstay Business Services will be sourcing engineers from the UK following the Australian government’s perceived failure to provide adequate industry training.

Under an agreement with Apex Engineering Solutions specialist recruitment company in the UK, Mainstay Business Services will be sourcing overseas staff to fill vacant positions in Australia providing consulting and support services to local customers in the industrial automation, process control, electrical, mining and marine industries.

These services include alliance contracting, employee satisfaction programs, specialist market research and industrial recruitment.

The agreement was signed in Headingley, England last week, with Mainstay Business Services managing director, Bill Ellerton, suggesting the new relationship will “further broaden Mainstay’s ability to source highly skilled Engineers and other professionals to help Australian companies in what has become a very tight market as a result of the mining boom.”

According to Ellerton, the Australian government has repeatedly failed to “accept responsibility” for training sufficient engineers and technical trades people in the process and control engineering industry, forcing companies like Mainstay to look abroad for staff.

“It is no use the current government blaming the last [for the skills shortage], as neither side of politics has done anywhere near enough for a couple of decades,” said Ellerton.

Ellerton began his career as a Technician in Training (TiT) with the former Postmaster General’s Department.

“There were more than 300 TITs in Melbourne alone in the year I started. Many went onto engineering or management careers as I did,” he said.

“There are no organisations, private or public, training the number of technical or engineering people there used to be. It sickens me when I hear of universities offering degrees in surfing and such stuff when we are in such desperate need of skilled resources to develop our great country.”

Ellerton says some of the best engineers in the world are bred in the UK.

“I am delighted that we have been able to forge this relationship with Apex Engineering Solutions, which I believe will assist us with our goal to help our customers succeed.”

Apex Engineering Solutions is a specialist recruitment consultancy working in the construction, engineering and architectural industries.

Mainstay Business Services provides consulting and support Services to industry bodies including alliance contracting, employee satisfaction programs, specialist market research and recruitment.

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