New Zealand is suffering from critical skills shortages. Change needs to happen, and happen quickly. To help politicians advance this goal, every Member of Parliament has been sent a set of valuable documents that articulate how to tackle this urgent need.

The package of 20 ServiceIQ documents include Regional Roadmaps for the service sectors in each of the country’s regions and an over-arching service sectors Workforce Development Plan, as well as national Māori, Pasifika and LLN (Literacy, Language and Numeracy) Action Plans.

Dean Minchington, ServiceIQ CEO, said that ServiceIQ is calling on all politicians, in both central and local government along with regional development agencies to work together and get behind actions defined by industry to change things for the better.

“Without scaremongering, there’s a very real crisis around the corner. It puts our successful service sectors at risk, and unless things change soon, New Zealand will be worse for it,” said Minchington. “The service sector is crucial to the New Zealand economy, as it employs 25 percent of all workers in New Zealand and contributes almost $40 billion annually to GDP.

“Action is needed to fill, and upskill for, around 200,000 jobs that will be opening over the next two to three years. This is more than an industry being a victim of its own success. Employment is booming, and declining polytechnic rolls suggest education is moving into the workplace even more than ever. In fact, if we approach this together and take ownership to find a solution, it could be an opportunity not just for the education industry but for the country.”

The Regional Roadmaps and Development Plans have defined actions that will help businesses overcome challenges that include attracting and retaining staff; transitioning capable young people from school into work and on-job training; increasing productivity through core skills development; and improving business and management capability.

“We look forward to working with local and national government politicians and officials to help them solve the problems that they’re grappling with, and helping every New Zealander who wants a career in one of our service sectors to achieve that goal through on-job upskilling.”