Despite soaring demand for engineers, many qualified migrants in Australia can't find jobs. At the end of a long day, Yaning Tang still has work to do at his company's workshop in Ingleburn in Sydney's outer west.
Key points: Nearly half of migrant engineers looking for work are unemployed, a new report from Engineers Australia saysBut demand for engineers is soaring, with job vacancies up 97 per cent in the past 12 monthsThe report found the biggest barrier was Australian employers wanting "local experience" There is sheet metal to be hammered and air conditioning units to be prepared for installation in the coming days. Mr Tang likes his employer and the work. But he wants to be doing much more. "If I say I'm satisfied with my present job, I'm lying, because, you know, I'm an engineer," he said. Mr Tang came to Australia in 2019 with a wealth of engineering experience in China. None of that meant anything when he applied for engineering jobs here. "During the process of application in Australia, I found nobody cared about that. Victorian restaurant owner faces cancelling Christmas bookings amid 'dire' staff shortage.
For much of the pandemic, COVID restrictions have been the main reason creperie owner Michel Dubois has had to close his doors, but now he has a new problem to contend with: staff shortages.
Key points: Business owners say a lack of overseas workers is holding hospitality backSome restaurants are shutting or running at reduced hours due to staff shortagesHospitality workers are using the opportunity to ask for better pay and conditions Mr Dubois, who runs multiple businesses specialising in crepes and French-style toasties across Melbourne, said he was five staff short of being able to open at full capacity. Hospitality venues start to raise prices as worker shortage, goods costs hit hard after COVID. Your morning coffee or the next cocktail on a night out could be about to cost you more, thanks to some lingering effects of the pandemic.
Key points: Worker shortages and rising costs of goods are forcing price hikesOne hospitality industry group says prices could go up by 20 per centIt is estimated that there are 100,000 hospitality jobs currently vacant Some businesses have already introduced price hikes due to the rising costs of goods, combined with businesses struggling to find staff because of ongoing border issues. But it is expected to get worse and more widespread soon. Restaurant and Catering Industry Association chief executive Wes Lambert said people could pay up to 20 per cent more than what they have in the past. "Consumers will need to prepare their wallets for increased menu prices into 2022," he said. "It certainly is a continued covered hangover for the industry. " What is 'Striketober'? Americans are fed up and walking off the job — and more are likely to follow. Across the United States, tens of thousands of organised workers are on strike amid one of the country's most visible industrial uprisings in decades.
Throughout October, walkouts were so widespread some pundits dubbed the month "Striketober", a colourful shorthand for dozens of strikes that even has its own hashtag. Since the start of the month: 1,400 Kellogg's factory workers have stopped work in four states10,000 John Deere manufacturing workers have walked off the job for the first time in 35 yearsthe union representing 60,000 film and TV crew members only narrowly averted a strike, which could have caused chaos in Hollywood. Pacific Islander workers save blueberry crops on Coffs Coast amid labour shortage. Workers from the Pacific Islands have brought much-needed relief to blueberry growers on the Coffs Coast, saving their crops from going to waste for a second year.
Key points: Berry grower cooperative OzGroup has welcomed more than 200 workers from the Pacific Islands to help with harvestA lack of backpackers means farmers have struggled to find workers to pick their cropsBlueberry growers say the Pacific Island workers have saved their fruit from being left to rot When COVID-19 hit and international travel was restricted, hardly any backpackers were around to pick fruit for the region's blueberry harvest last year. Stephen Thandi, who runs a commercial blueberry farm at Woolgoolga, said the overseas worker shortage meant fruit was left on the trees to rot. How Queensland's strawberry growers planted a $100k prize to help solve a labour crisis. The Queensland Strawberry Grower's Association is crediting a competition for warding off what it feared would be its worst labour crisis on record.
COVID-bruised strawberry growers are celebrating a sweet plan to attract and keep workersTen farm workers had a one-in-a-hundred chance to win $100,000Thousands of pickers and packers registered Each season, Queensland produces about 42 per cent of Australia's annual strawberry crop, with a farm gate value of $435 million last year. But with international borders closed, the industry faced a huge challenge to get enough pickers and packers to stop ripe fruit rotting in the fields.
Seasonal workers from the Pacific hard at work at NT mango farms less than a month after arrival. Just weeks after arriving in the Northern Territory as a seasonal worker, Samoan woman Tavai Tofaeono already considers Australia her second home.
The 34-year-old arrived in Darwin in September and works at a packing shed in Berry Springs, where she has been picking and sorting mangoes. "Life in Samoa is really tough," she said. "I have a lot of family … I am supporting them. "The company we [are] working [for] … we love their hospitality. Former recruiters tell of their industry's dark side, as more Australians are likely to need their help. Recruiters say the jobs market is seeing more activity now than it has in years — that is, many positions are being made redundant, and job seekers are looking to find other work.
There's also a large cohort of workers who are switching roles, according to the Recruitment, Consulting and Staffing Association. The role of the recruiter is to place these candidates into a role that suits their experience and skill set. Ideally, the successful candidate also fits into the new workplace culture. Several former recruitment agents though have now spoken out about what they say is the industry's dark underbelly. Amazon Flex delivery drivers tell of insecurity, low pay and safety concerns in 'uber for parcels' scheme. Truck driver strike at Toll Group on Friday set to cause road block for transport giant. Thousands of truck drivers will put a stop to wide range of product deliveries on Friday as part of a planned national strike at transport giant Toll Group.
Key points: Around 7,000 Toll truck drivers will go on strike for 24 hours on FridayThe Transport Workers Union accuses Toll of seeking to hire lower paid contractors Toll has offered workers a 2 per cent pay rise and has urged the union to return to bargaining The Transport Workers Union (TWU) said that "crisis talks" over a new enterprise bargaining agreement with Toll had collapsed. As a result, it said 7,000 truck drivers will strike for 24 hours on Friday after the negotiations broke down. The strike means there will be disruptions across a wide range of industries including retail and beverage businesses. Toll is one of the nation's biggest transport operators and its customers include major retailers, healthcare firms, and the chemical, agribusiness and mining industries.
The great skilled worker shortage crisis and how to solve it. Repetition is a powerful weapon when it comes to psychology.
Say something often enough and eventually it becomes accepted as truth, or at least the conventional wisdom. Last week, right on cue, as our unemployment rate dropped yet again, the same old arguments were trotted out about what ails our workforce. Australian workers, we are told, lack the required skills to get our economy back on track and hurtling into a new era. What's required is a renewed intake on a mass scale of skilled workers from offshore to plug the gap. The shortage of empirical evidence to back up these claims seems irrelevant. If it really is the case that skilled labour is in such short supply, why aren't wages being bid into the stratosphere by desperate employers?
Stagnating wages is the single biggest factor behind the Reserve Bank's inability to fire up the economy. Skilled migrants the missing link in Australia's post-COVID recovery. Plenty of economic reports come across my desk on a daily basis. Some stand out more than others. This one, from SEEK, caught my eye. It begins like this: "Overview of March 2021: Highest number of job ads posted in a month in SEEK's 23+ year history. Applications per ad at lowest level since 2012. " Sydney Uber Eats drivers earn less than minimum casual wage during peak times, gig economy inquiry told. Uber Eats delivery riders in Sydney earn less than the casual minimum wage during peak meal times, a NSW Upper House inquiry has heard. Committee chair Tony Sheldon said "insecure work" is having a major impact on AustraliansUber said most of its drivers did not want to become employeesRideshare platform Ola indicated it would accept some regulation The Select Committee on Job Security has opened with the first of its public hearings into the gig economy, hearing from representatives of Uber, Uber Eats, Ola and Deliveroo.
In its submission to the committee, Uber said its Uber Eats delivery riders earned $21.55 per hour in Sydney through the app over peak meal times. The amount earned by riders was raised by committee chair Tony Sheldon to Uber Eats general manager Matthew Denman. Labor picks fight with farm piece rates in a move critics say could drive producers to the wall. The federal opposition says farm workers need to be guaranteed a minimum wage if they are paid according to how much produce they pick.
Key points: Workers paid according to how much fruit they pick are being exploited, say unions The opposition says workers must be guaranteed a minimum wage The National Farmers' Federation says piece rates drive worker productivity Labor has thrown its support behind a union campaign to amend the horticulture workers award in a move farmers claim could drive them out of business. Speaking in Sydney today, Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese said fruit pickers must be assured of earning the minimum wage of $19.84 per hour.
"What we're saying is there should be a minimum rate," he said. Under the award, the piece rate allows workers to be paid according to the amount of fruit they harvest, and must offer the average worker up to 15 per cent more per hour than the minimum wage. Government abandons bulk of industrial relations package in effort to save definition of casual work. The federal government has been forced to abandon the bulk of a controversial industrial relations bill, failing to negotiate it through the Senate. Key points: Only one measure in the government's suite of reforms has passed successfullyThe government has been locked in negotiations with the Senate crossbenchSenator Michaelia Cash says the government agreed to make changes to get the most critical part of the bill through.
Online food delivery deaths prompt calls for better worker's compensation for gig economy workers. Four-year-old Azka is getting used to a new phrase in his vocabulary: "My father has passed away. " They are an enormous five words for a small boy to carry. Key points: Over recent months there have been five deaths involving food delivery ridersAs independent contractors, delivery riders are not entitled to the same rights as employeesThe deaths have underscored a union campaign for stronger protections for gig economy workers. Protesters call for wage theft crackdown in Adelaide's Chinatown following alleged assault. Would-be fruit picker calls for more flexible hiring practices as growers seek answers to worker shortage. Superannuation cannot rise without stalling wage growth, RBA documents reveal.
Working more doesn't always mean more output, according to these researchers. In many ways, working too much was not a bad problem to have in 2020, when you consider the 1 million Australians who were out of work. Key points: Shearer shortage due to COVID restrictions sparks 'unofficial auction' for workers. A worker shortage crisis has kicked off a bidding war between farmers and contractors for shearing crews.
When backpackers went home, these Australians gave farm jobs a go. Here's how they went. As soon as it became clear COVID-19 was going to wreak havoc, most backpackers hastily left Australia and made their way back home. Fearing the nation's fresh produce would be left to rot, the Federal Government and agriculture bodies lobbied young Australians to take up farming jobs instead. Unions take Qantas to High Court over alleged misuse of JobKeeper scheme, underpayment of staff. Unions are taking their fight against Qantas and its use of the JobKeeper wage subsidy program to the High Court. JobKeeper subsidy drops today before it disappears entirely in March, and some workers are worried.
Hundreds of thousands of Australians face a pay cut of up to $100 per week from today as employee wage subsidy JobKeeper is wound back. Key points: Former Huawei employee speaks out on Shenzhen's '996' culture as Chinese city enforces paid leave. For five years, former Huawei employee Zeng Meng embraced China's infamous "996" culture of working from 9:00am to 9:00pm, six days a week. Key points: Shenzhen becomes the first Chinese city to mandate that workers in "special industries" take paid leaveThose industries will now also be required to pay overtime or give extra annual leave daysBut experts fear the new policy may not change the overwork culture in the tech hub.
NSW Health employee was suspended from his job on the Mid-North Coast for talking to his union. Farmers look to retain piece rate work despite union push for minimum award wages. AWU takes fight over fruit pickers' pay to Fair Work Commission - ABC News. Job ads targeting migrants overwhelmingly offering below the minimum wage - ABC News. Canberra massage parlour owner accused of threatening to kill employees' families denies wrongdoing - ABC News. Who would have thought John Setka could be such a unifying force - ABC News. TWU lodges Federal Court case against Qantas over company's decision to outsource 2,000 jobs - ABC News. Fair Work Commission could allow agreements which make some workers worse off - ABC News. Part-time workers to be offered more hours but without overtime under proposed industrial relations shake-up - ABC News.
Changes to casual work including options for permanency and leave loading proposed in new industrial relations reforms - ABC News. Farm labour incentives failing and the result could be crops left unharvested - ABC News. Calls for royal commission as report details allegations blueberry farmers pay workers $3 an hour - ABC News. Virgin Australia workers asked to accept pay freeze, but promised their jobs won't be outsourced - ABC News. Unions lobby governments, Industrial Relations Minister to halve insecure work by 2030 - ABC News. Job recruitment algorithms can amplify unconscious bias favouring men, new research finds - ABC News.
Australian berry and citrus farms most at risk of having slave-like working conditions, Woolworths modern slavery report finds - ABC News. Ahead of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, Oxfam releases report on Australian fashion brands - ABC News. 'Hidden' garment workers in Australia are vulnerable to exploitation while sewing from home - ABC News. Outsourcing Qantas jobs is 'un-Australian', say workers, as they make last-ditch bid to save more than 2,000 positions - ABC News. Victoria announces trial program offering sick and carers leave to casual or insecure workers - ABC News. Coles shuts major Sydney warehouse as hundreds of Smeaton Grange workers strike over redundancy conditions - ABC News. Crown whistleblower demands apology from casino giant over 'gold-digger' attack ads - ABC News. How 'Saint Monday' hangovers and the football helped bring us the weekend - ABC News. Drakes Supermarkets facing underpayment claims in class action lodged in Federal Court - ABC News.
Gig economy under the microscope as former Deliveroo driver takes company to Fair Work Commission for unfair dismissal - ABC News. Seafarers forced to spend up to 18 months on ships, International Transport Workers' Federation says - ABC News. Cambodian garment factory workers demand rights after coronavirus closures - ABC News. Universities accused of 'sham contracting' as wage scandal in Australia's higher education sector deepens - ABC News.
Being monitored by your boss while working from home — necessary trade-off or 'stupid' surveillance? - ABC News. Coronavirus pandemic a cover to try and weaken workers' pay and conditions, unions say - ABC News. Commercial laundry discovers it has 25 migrant workers with 31 untapped degrees - ABC News. Qantas workers face the axe as COVID-19 grounding of flights opens outsourcing loophole - ABC News. Job ready university degrees may not be the tertiary education solution we are hoping for - ABC News. 'There are no human rights here': Inside the Government's 'exploitative' backpacker visa scheme. Hofmann Engineering looks to wrest work from China as it fights to save jobs amid coronavirus pandemic - ABC News. Backpackers warn of horticulture industry 'underbelly' of dodgy labour hire providers and illegal wages - ABC News. Can your boss cut your pay or conditions without asking you? How does coronavirus affect workplace rights? - ABC News.
Some jobs lost forever as coronavirus pandemic accelerates structural change - ABC News. Coronavirus recession, not robots, set to take jobs from future workforce - ABC News. Melbourne company withdraws its Fair Work case against staff over coronavirus outbreak - ABC News. 'Eye-watering' coronavirus debt is 'manageable' but unemployment levels remain troubling - ABC News. Coronavirus quarantine guards in Melbourne hotels were recruited via WhatsApp, then 'told to bring their own masks' - ABC News. Keeping the focus on Australian manufacturing after coronavirus - ABC News. An arts degree has long been the butt of predictable joke but there's another side - ABC News.
Generation Z employees pose dilemma for some employers, and technology is key for retaining younger staff. Crown Casino shows corporate Australia still doesn't get it on excessive pay. I haven't even started teaching yet, but it's already cost me $700 — and I'm not alone. Farmers and workers both claim to lose out in changes to horticultural labour rules - ABC Rural - ABC News. Aussie firm's 'no-work Wednesday' concept goes global. A working-class family finds fresh hell in the gig economy in Sorry We Missed You. Federal Government urged to axe 'better off overall' test to streamline EBA process. George Calombaris's MAdE Establishment underpaid workers $7.8 million. Cheap migrant worker cut-off slips as regional push brings further discounts for employers - Politics.
All work and no play the US way. Living like a super-productive chief executive is harmful to your health. SA public school teachers vote to go on strike for better pay and conditions. Hairdressers unionise and unite for fight against proposed cut to penalty rates. Struggling retailers say penalty rate cut offers them a lifeline. Federal election 2019: Vote Compass finds support for Sunday penalty rates and higher minimum wage - Australia Votes - Federal Election 2019 - Politics. Pine Gap spy base contractor Raytheon locked in redundancy payout dispute. Why are Australian workers getting the smallest pay rises since WWII? Small workplaces and corporate profit are driving wage stagnation. High Court to determine whether your employer can dictate what you can say. Part-time work is a full-time problem for younger workers. Farmers in Northern Territory left out of latest skilled migrant worker scheme despite high hopes.
Are you in your 20s and struggling to find full-time work? You're not alone. Uber accused of 'wage theft' by drivers. Deliveroo's new contracts shift liability to workers, riders allege. Unlimited paid annual leave seems tempting, but is it a gimmick or good business? Deliveroo threatens to terminate workers after losing their contracts. Major blitz of Sydney's 'cheap eats' precinct found 176 employees were underpaid. Foodora dishes out punishment to injured riders in 'oppressive' policy, ABC investigation reveals.
Ichi Group threatened, fired restaurant workers who requested award rates, ex-employees claim. 'Bonded like a slave': Workplace watchdog investigation into labour exploitation reveals poor conditions - ABC Rural - ABC News. Online food delivery company Foodora facing legal action over alleged underpayment of staff.