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Industry must do more to tackle skills shortage

Australia’s oil and gas industry is failing to offer enough entry-level opportunities, information and advice to jobseekers to address the growing skills shortage in the resources sector, according to Jody Elliott, Director of The Resource Channel (pictured alongside).

The skills shortage that threatens to leave Australia’s resources sector 36,000 tradespeople short by 2015.

Elliott believes one of the greatest obstacles in attracting skilled workers to Australia’s oil and gas industry was the lack of clear communication by the industry about where jobseekers should train, what skills they should train in, and how they can increase their chances of getting a foot in the door.

“As an industry we are happy to cry poor from a skills perspective, but reticent to share information to the job market which would significantly assist those seeking a start and us, as employers,” she saidt.

While the Australian government, along with the Western Australia, South Australia and Queensland state governments, had implemented programs and initiatives to address the skills shortage, there was still a lack of entry-level positions available.

“The gap now appears to sit squarely with industry. Numbers seem to suggest little evidence that entry level or trainee opportunities have significantly increased from previous years, despite the known demand,” she said.

It’s anticipated that around 3,200 new operational jobs will be generated from the liquefied natural gas (LNG) trains due to be constructed by 2015. With another 61,500 new jobs required in the mining industry and 45,000 in resource construction, Australia’s resources sector is facing a skills shortage that far exceeds that experienced in the ‘boom’ period of 2003 to 2008.

Matthew Underhill, Global Managing Director of Hays Oil & Gas, will discuss the findings from Hays’ 2012 survey.

The AOG Conference will be the first public release of the survey and Underhill will make specific reference to the Australian skill shortages and suggest a six point plan for employers seeking to navigate their way through a skills short recruitment market.

AOG will also join forces with leading universities and energy employers to encourage the next generation of oil and gas leaders at the AOG Careers Day.

AOG 2012 is happening at Perth Convention and Exhibition Centre from 22-24 February 2012. To register visit

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