[4 December/Stuff]

A recent employment survey in the Marlborough region shows the province is desperately short of skilled full-time staff.  Wine Marlborough advocacy manager, Vance Kerslake, said many Kiwis consider themselves too good for seasonal work and are only interested in taking permanent positions. Wine Marlborough surveyed 55 Marlborough employers across a dozen industries and found 85 per cent of respondents had vacancies for permanent, skilled positions. According to surveyed employers, their biggest challenge was getting applications from people with the right skills. Accommodation was also identified as a barrier to attracting and retaining talent. Lawsons Dry Hills General Manager Sion Barnsley said they preferred people who were resident and established in the province as their vacancies are more in the winemaking area of the business. He said that they preferred tertiary qualifications for winemaking positions, but for operating machinery, they wanted people who were reliable and practical. A global shortage of diesel mechanics had many employers in the region taking on apprentices and battling for qualified mechanics of any discipline.