Consulting firm Mercer says the global financial crisis won’t solve New Zealand’s skills shortage.

Like many other countries, New Zealand has an aging workforce and a severe shortage of workers with key skills.

On top of these problems, there’s a brain drain as skilled workers travel overseas to find better rates of pay, lower taxes and brighter opportunities.

The report says that New Zealand’s employers need to focus more on older workers to maintain a viable workforce. Not only are there already more older workers than younger workers, but their numbers are growing faster.

If anything, the problem is less pronounced in New Zealand than many other first world countries.

In my experience, New Zealand employers have been slower to recognise the shift towards an older workforce than their counterparts overseas. In particular, Australian employers seem keener than New Zealand employers to hire older workers.


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