The Federal Government will invest $2 billion to help job seekers and school leavers learn new skills in transport, warehousing, manufacturing and retail industries.
Ports Australia has released its three priority policies, ahead of the 2019 federal election, that the organisation believes will save Australians money, increase our international competitiveness, strengthen the economy, create jobs in regional areas and help reduce congestion in our cities.
The policies also come with a warning of an impending maritime skills shortage.
According to Ports Australia, the three policies work together to promote a more efficient freight and supply chain through mode neutrality, smarter regulation and job creation.
“Ports are the starting and finishing points for exports and imports heading to and from Australian businesses and households.”
“With our growing population and even faster-growing freight task it is imperative that we start developing and implementing effective long-term plans for our freight network to support this country.
“We believe that an Australia with better-connected Ports that utilise the strength of each transport mode; the flexibility of trucking, connectivity of rail and capacity of shipping, can be a more internationally competitive country with a lower cost of living.
“Our policies also include a caution that poor national freight and infrastructure planning will have compounded negative results. Of concern is the dwindling pool of maritime skills in this country able to run the Ports, Australia’s trade and economic gateways,” Mike Gallacher, Chief Executive, Ports Australia said.
The three policies are:
1. Improving Lives Through Connected Ports
Currently 80 per cent of all freight trips to and from a port are conducted by truck adding to city congestion. By better connecting Ports with rail and road networks and planning approaches to allow for sensible development around Ports, governments can reduce overall congestion, pollution and maintenance costs while increasing road safety through efficient and strategic truck movements. Corridor protection and planning to link Ports with industrial zones and regions will also play a significant role in creating a liveable future for our cities.
2. Building Maritime Skills
Because Ports handle almost all our physical trade, Australia is particularly vulnerable to impacts created by a workforce lacking maritime skills. Ports require highly specialised people who have had decades of experience to fill crucial Ports roles; harbour masters, pilots, tugs masters, hydrographers and land side operators.
“Over 60% of skilled people in the sector are over 45 while the number aged under 30 is reducing. Ports around the country, particularly regional Ports, are struggling to recruit adequately skilled people for specific roles.”
“Government needs to find ways to increase opportunities for Australians to enter the maritime industry. Our Ports around the country already run cadetship, internship and graduate programs but more needs to be done given there is a shortfall in mariners not just in Australia but globally,” Mike said.
3. Using Australia’s Blue Highway
Australia’s freight task will double by 2030 after already increasing by 50 per cent over the past 20 years. Our current and planned infrastructure cannot handle the growth in freight movements. With over 80 per cent of our population living within 50 km of the coast Australians are connected by the Blue Highway, an underutilised transport mode.
“Unfortunately, only 15 per cent of our domestic freight task is moved by ship. We believe more non-time specific freight such as construction materials and fuel can be moved along our blue highway. This frees up space on our roads and rail while providing training opportunities for Australian mariners.”
“Ports are a part of Australia’s future success story and we look forward to working with the government on implementing policies to support Australians through their Ports.
“Freight cooperation and planning is also part of the story. We urge all political parties to reach a bi-partisan agreement on strategy and for the National Freight and Supply Chain Strategy to be released within in the first 100 days of the incoming government,”Mike concluded.
Blockchain technology, mass customisation, the demand for ethical practice and traceability are just some of the drivers rapidly changing how supply chains operate right around the world. As a direct consequence, the skills needed by individual workers are also evolving and while many are specific to a particular industry or process, others are recognised as being transferable between industries or common to several elements of a supply chain.
The Cross Sector Supply Chain Skills Project has been commissioned by the Australian Industry and Skills Committee (AISC). Its goal is to develop a series of skill sets and units of competency for those supply chain skills common to a range of industry sectors and in doing so, support the mobility of skilled labour and agility of the Australian workforce. It will enable the many individuals working along different parts of the supply chain to be skilled to the same world class standards and as a consequence, increase industry’s efficiency and productivity.
Ultimately, the cross sector skill sets and units of competency will be signed-off by the AISC and from that point on, form the basis for nationally recognised training throughout Australia in those skills.
Work is being led by a Project Reference Group comprising representatives from across a range of diverse industries. Oversight is by the Transport and Logistics Industry Reference Committee. Technical expertise and project management is by Australian Industry Standards.
How can you get involved?
It’s essential that the industry makes its voice heard on the skills needed by Australia’s supply chains. The 13 new draft units on which the committee really value your feedback are:
- Establish blockchain in a supply chain.
- Enable traceability in a supply chain.
- Compliance in supply chains.
- Manage outsourced supply chain operations.
- Monitor ethical supply chain practices.
- Supply chains supporting mass customisation.
- Customer focussed supply chains.
- Monitor digital supply chain services.
- Build digital supply chain capability in the workforce.
- Lead digital supply chain implementation.
- Employ supply chain risk management practices.
- Stock control and receivals.
- Manage stock and inventory systems.
Commenting on the draft units is completed online through a quick and easy process. An interactive model is used whereby once registered, you simply read through the unit/s you’re interested in, click on the word or sentence that you want to comment on and type your feedback in situ.
The draft units will be available for comment until Monday, 7 January 2019. If you’d like to read more about the work underway go to the project-specific website.
A new report from advisory service Deloitte Access Economics has found that Australia’s supply chain and logistics workforce will reach 161,000 people in 2021/2022, up from 145,000 in 2016/2017.
This represents an annual growth rate of 2.1 per cent, above the projected growth of the Australian workforce as a whole, 1.5 per cent.
The future of work: Occupational and education trends in supply chain and logistics in Australia also found that postgraduate qualification impacts the earning power of the sector’s professionals, boosting lifetime salaries by 48 per cent, compared to individuals with no post-school qualifications.
In 2016/2017, supply chain and logistics professionals with relevant postgraduate qualifications commanded an average annual income of $140,949 – 66 per cent more than workers in the sector with no post-school qualifications.
By 2021-22, this is expected to rise to $164,360, a 14.3 per cent hike.
According to Deloitte, technological revolution is driving jobs growth in supply chain and logistics faster than in the general workforce, putting pressure on managers to acquire new skills in e-commerce and data analytics.
“With new technologies such as drones, driverless vehicles, 3D printing and sensor technology seeing increased deployment across various supply chain functions, there will be greater opportunities for supply chain professionals to adapt business operations in procurement, production and distribution to effectively and efficiently use these digital tools,” said Professor Booi Kam, the Program Director of the Master of Supply Chain and Logistics Management at RMIT University, who consulted with Deloitte for the report.
“Technological developments are providing significant opportunities for applying data analytics to improve supply chain and logistics operations across functions such as demand forecasting, inventory management and supply chain visualisation. The use of data analytics to inform these decisions is increasingly being recognised as best practice in supply chain management.”
David Rumbens, Partner at Deloitte Access Economics, added: “The growing importance of digital technology means there is an increasing reliance on data-driven insights to improve supply chain efficiency and effectiveness.
“The evolution of the supply chain is also being accelerated by consumer-driven change, as customers move towards e-commerce away from traditional ‘bricks and mortar’ retailers to online purchases and e-commerce.”
Read the report here.
Australian Industry Standards (AIS) has been commissioned to lead a Supply Chain Skills Cross Sector Project.
AIS was established in early 2016 as an independent, government-funded ‘Skills Service Organisation’, a major component of the Australian Government’s reform of vocational education and training across Australian industry sectors.
AIS will work with a Project Reference Group of representatives from across the Industry Reference Committee (IRC) network on the project, looking to identify opportunities for cross-sector training package material to support the development of supply chain skills.
“Major change is under way across and within supply chains due to the impact of automation, robotics, big data and other new technologies,” the organisation said in a statement. “The addition of disruptive technologies to these changes has only increased the need of supply chain related industries to become innovative and seek new practices to increase efficiency, meet consumer demands and become more competitive.
“The skills needed to support innovation and the new technologies will be the key to the future success of industry throughout the supply chain.”
The Project Reference Group will review these major changes and the work will inform the development of a ‘Case for Change’ for submission to the Australian Industry and Skills Committee for consideration.
“AIS is excited to have the opportunity to work with a broad range of industry stakeholders on this ground-breaking project,” the statement added.
The Supply Chain & Logistics Association of Australia (SCLAA) has enlisted the help of 73 of its members and friends to become qualified mentors for the industry in Queensland.
The SCLAA said the need to qualify mentors has been apparent in the industry for many years, and with the help of the Transport and Logistics Industry Skills Council (TLISC), supported by the National Workforce Development Fund (NWDF), a pilot program is being established to trial this new skill set for the industry.
During September and October participants will attend workshops run by Queensland based training organisations, Major Operator and Driver Training and Strategix Training Group.
Vince Aisthorpe, president of the Queensland Division of the SCLAA, said that this skill set has become available just at the right time.
“At the SCLAA, we have had a focus on mentoring our members, but sometime the number of experienced mentors cannot meet the increasingly high number of mentees. This program will inject 73 new mentors into industry, all consistently developed to a high standard under the new skill set TLIM4004A Mentor Individuals and Small Groups.” Aisthorpe said.
Matt Tenkate, general manager at Major Driver Operator Training said that mentoring played an important role in up-skilling and retaining staff.
“Leadership is an important element of success in a business. Knowing how to mentor your teams and individuals is what can move good managers to great leaders,” Tenkate said.
“We are very pleased to be part of this pilot to increase mentoring capability across the industry.”
The pilot will be completed by October 2013.
With an eye on the polls the government appears to have set out a relatively pain-free budget. But what's in the fine print for industry?
New innovation centre for Australian manufacturing
A new $29.8 million Manufacturing Technology Innovation Centre is expected to bring together researchers and manufacturers to drive innovation through new and improved industrial products and processes.
The new Manufacturing Technology Innovation Centre will create, foster and leverage innovative Australian industrial design, engineering and product development, including through the spread of leading edge technologies, business processes and technical knowledge.
Retain $15.6 billion investment in skills and training over the next four years. The Government will also invest $18.1 million over four years to establish three Australian Skills Centres of Excellence in partnership with industry and training organisations.
The new centres aim to establish benchmarks of teaching practice and performance in selected fields of vocational education. Commonwealth funding will be supplemented by co-investment from industry or state and territory governments.
An investment of almost $55 million over four years to train more Australians to meet the future skills needs of the new economy.
A $35 million investment will support mature age workers to reskill or upskill, with a further $19.4 million funding to provide training to newly qualified tradespeople to help them establish their own businesses.
The new $35 million funding will be available from 1 January 2013 for businesses to provide training to new and existing workers aged 50 years and over. It is expected that at least 7260 mature age workers will benefit from this measure.
Employers hiring mature age workers for three months will be given a $1000 bonus.
However, the Government will discontinue the $1500 standard employer commencement incentive payment for existing worker Australian Apprentices in non-National Skills Need List occupations but increase the standard completion incentive by $500 to $3000. New employee Australian Apprentices and existing workers in National Skills Need List occupations will not be impacted by this change.
Tax reforms for small business
Provision of $27.5 million to extend the Small Business Advisory Service (SBAS) program for a further four years to continue supporting small businesses with advice and assistance.
The Government will also introduce a loss carry back initiative in 2012-13 to provide tax relief to companies struggling due to the high dollar. The loss carry-back will allow businesses to ‘carry back’ their losses, to offset past profits and get a refund of tax previously paid on that profit.
The new loss carry-back is estimated to benefit around 110,000 companies in its first four years.
Funds for Science and Research
Funding for science and research in universities will be increased by $126 million in 2012-13.
More University Places
An extra $23.4 million over the next four years to assist students from disadvantaged backgrounds or needing additional preparation to make the transition to university.
The Budget will increase the amount of loading paid to universities for enabling courses. By 2014, this funding will have increased the value of the loading by 50 per cent to $3068 for each full-time enabling place. These courses are provided free to students who need additional help preparing for a university course.
Reduced Defence Spending
The massive $5.5 billion cut in military spending impacts purchases of big ticket items and other hardware. But there is aslo a $1.2 billion cut in the capital works progaram which could have a flow-through effect on companies involved in defence-related projects.
No Company Tax Cut
The Government has reneged on its pledge to reduce Company Tax from 30 percent to 29 percent. The Australian Industry Group says this erodes industry's incentives to invest and innovate and that businesses in manufacturing will be hit hard.