Skills Active and fellow service ITOs join forces to go to bat for service professionals

May 1, 2017

Skills Active and its fellow service industry training organisations are putting forward a united front to lobby for the importance of training and upskilling for New Zealand’s service industries, under the banner of At Your Service Aotearoa.

The joint initiative is between Skills Active (the ITO for sport, recreation and the performing arts), Careerforce (aged care, health and social services), ServiceIQ (hospitality, travel and retail) and HITO (hair and beauty). Business NZ is also a partner to the project.

The mission of At Your Service Aotearoa is to raise awareness of the size and value of New Zealand’s service industries, which contribute an estimated $47 billion to national GDP, and employ some 590,000 people and counting.

Ultimately, the group’s vision is for coordinated national action to provide increased access to high-quality on-job training for these people, many of whom work in highly skilled and challenging roles, and all of whom do important work that touches the lives of New Zealanders every day.

Service professionals are not going anywhere

Skills Active chief executive Grant Davidson said the service industries sometimes risked being forgotten as government attention was channelled towards science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

“While the STEM sectors are undoubtedly important, the service workforce represented by At Your Service Aotearoa is a huge driver of the New Zealand economy,” Dr Davidson said.

“And this industry is not going anywhere – we will need an estimated 200,000 extra staff by 2020 to fill new and vacant roles. Furthermore, these are critical jobs – they are diverse, meaningful and require broad and deep skills.

“In the case of Skills Active and our sport, recreation and performing arts occupations, those skills cover everything from delivering exercise prescriptions to clients with special health needs, to helping kids grow through outdoor learning, to managing world-class events and venues.”

Dr Davidson said Skills Active was proud to be part of At Your Service Aotearoa, and was looking forward to engaging with a range of stakeholders in the coming year, to champion careers and training for New Zealand’s vital service professionals.

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Media contact for Skills Active

Esther McLaren
esther@skillsactive.org.nz
0220 371 012

About Skills Active

Skills Active Aotearoa is the industry training organisation (ITO) for sport, recreation, exercise, outdoor recreation and performing arts. We promote sport and recreation careers and workforce development, create world-class, nationally-recognised qualifications, and support workplaces to train staff.