The Great South Job Search for 2020 highlighted the extensive range of employment opportunities and support available for job seekers across the Southland region.
The free employment expo was held in Gore and Invercargill late last month and included employment seminars, the opportunity for job seekers to receive free employment advice and job boards that advertised over 700 vacancies across a wide range of sectors.
Great South GM for Business Services Ben Lewis said the number of vacancies was very pleasing given it showed a return to the number of opportunities that were available in Southland pre-COVID-19.
“Showcasing the opportunities on offer has helped to give both the current and future labour-force a renewed sense of confidence, with people benefiting from the valuable support, networks and advice on offer,” he said.
In total, over 750 people attended the events in Gore and Invercargill with 431 people attending one of the job-seeker seminars on offer in Invercargill which included topics of CV writing, interview tips, understanding how recruitment agencies work, employment rights and budgeting.
Mr Lewis said the high level of engagement reflected the uncertainty that had been created in the wake of COVID-19 and the recent Tiwai closure announcement.
The event received significant support from local agencies and Mr Lewis said this collaborative approach provided job seekers with a full support system.
“The event gave local agencies and employment advisors the opportunity to speak with job-seekers and identify potential employment pathways, benefiting both the jobseeker and the wider region’s workforce. Already we are aware of a least one success story with AWF Invercargill connecting a jobseeker with employment in the days following the event” he said.
The Great South Job Search for 2020 built on the foundation created by previous Southland Pop Up Job Shop events which were held in 2017, 2018 and 2019. In comparison to the 2019 event, the Great South Job Search had an increase of over 100 attendees.
Mr Lewis said the event was just one of the many initiatives Great South is involved with to help retain a skilled workforce, encourage business development, and support the region’s overall economic recovery and future success.