May 2022

Delay of 3-5 years before immigrants, international students and seasonal workers return to pre-pandemic levels?

By: Odyssey General, Outsourcing
Tags: Australian Accountant, australian accounting, immigration, labour shortage, Offshoring, Outsourcing

Despite the Australian borders being open, there has been an unremarkable number of new immigrants flooding into Australia, with an indication that Australia might not be winning the competitive global war for talent. There are indications that there is a slowdown in offshore visa processing, with older and more experienced workers being discouraged and an out-of-date priority jobs list.

There are some indications this might have something to do with the upcoming election. As usual, the preservation and creation local jobs are a key strategy deployed in an election year.

There seems to also be issues with the attraction of seasonal workers to Australia, with a story recently of a restauranteur offering $13,000 worth of free flights, accommodation and sponsorship with no takers.

With a real concern as to the number of zombie companies operating in Australia, as well as concerns about specific industries such as the building industry, it’s no wonder there may not be a “full steam ahead” instruction from those in charge.

International student numbers still seem to be down by 2/3 compared to pre-pandemic levels. It was reported 50,000 international students arrived in February 2022 compared with more than 150,000 who came to Australia before the pandemic.

It’s expected with lockdowns in some countries there will continue to be issues with international students arriving from those countries. This means the delay of international students graduating and moving into the Australian workforce will continue. At the moment Australia should be looking at a minimum 3 year shortage of this resource.

There are continued issues for Australian accounting firms in finding resources from the usual “pre pandemic” sources, and the expectation is these resource shortages are expected to continue into the 3-5 year time period.

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