CEO Update October 2019

I am very pleased to report that the installation planning for the CCTV installation at Halifax has gone extremely well.

The support from local businesses to this project has been encouraging and we have finalised the 22 locations of the Cameras. In addition we have also secured funding to increase the general illumination of the Business Park and on the approaches the CCTV Cameras. To the Businesses who have agreed to host these cameras and lights we thank you for your involvement.

Installation will commence very shortly and BTS will be very active in the area during November installing the equipment to make the park a safer place to do business.

I have been very active on the airwaves recently with the talk about the South West having a Designated Area Migration Agreement (DAMA) to prepare ourselves for the looming skills shortage due to the increased industrial activity and the increase in tourism to flow from the flights into Busselton. Whilst the Chamber supports planning and preparation for DAMA the push for such an agreement must come from the Industrial and Business sector. The investigations I have done on existing DAMA agreements is that they are expensive to set up, expensive to process the applications and still time consuming in getting an overseas employee into your business. On the radio I encouraged business to utilise the many ready for work schemes available to train our younger community members for these jobs, we still have time if we start now. Unemployment levels amongst the 17-25 age group are still unacceptably high and there is a pool of local people looking for opportunities.

I was challenged on this that training young people resulted in them leaving the region once trained. I am reminded of the saying “What happens if we train our staff and they leave? What happens if we don’t train them and they stay?” Contact the Chamber if you require introduction to an agency that supports these schemes.

One area of potential employees that can be trained to meet this looming demand is from the disability sector, we do a lot of work with Forrest Personnel and I know that they are keen to speak to anyone who is willing to give a trainee on their books an opportunity. So whilst planning for a DAMA is still required I would urge employers to be more active in employing trainees and engaging with our local agencies to find staff rather than waiting for overseas employees to become available or just relying on seek to throw up candidates.

Finally be on the lookout for our Chamber adverts hitting GWN7 channels and the MMM radio airwaves from November. The Chamber is seeking the support from a wider cross section of the business community to attract new members and to maintain ongoing membership. The adverts highlight the benefits membership of the Chamber brings to your business and to the community.






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