NBN to create hundreds of telecommunications, health jobs

JOB seekers on the Sunshine Coast are winning this week, with announcements that hundreds of telecommunications and health jobs are coming our way.

NBN (formerly NBN Co) yesterday announced it would create 850 telecommunications jobs in Queensland, including hundreds on the Coast, while the Palaszczuk Government committed to boost public hospitals with 30 new "nurse navigator" positions.

Adding to the jobs boom was Bunnings Warehouse Maroochydore's new store opening, which led to 50 new jobs on top of the 200 existing employees who moved from the former store.

NBN CEO Bill Morrow said the Career Start campaign would not only kick start many telco careers for young Queenslanders, but it would be a key plank in future-proofing the Australian telecommunications workforce.

The telecommunications company, which is responsible for the rollout of Australia's high speed internet infrastructure under the National Broadband Network, will also set up and maintain a national skills register as part of the initiative.

"The NBN is Australia's largest infrastructure project and it is absolutely vital that we have enough people to construct the network as we increase the pace of the rollout," Mr Morrow said.

"At present a large proportion of the Australian telecommunication industry workforce are due to retire in around five years' time.

"Without the Career Start campaign, we believe that we would be potentially staring down the barrel of a telecommunications skills shortage in Australia."

The announcement was welcomed by Maroochydore-based training agency Gold Training, which has delivered training for NBN workers in previous years although it was not listed as one of the eight endorsed training providers in yesterday's announcement.

Gold Training business development manager Les Shaw said Career Start presented a fantastic opportunity for those who are facing barriers in gaining long term, meaningful employment on the Coast.

"This program will create an opportunity to learn new skills that they can carry with them for life," he said.

"The program will also provide individuals with an opportunity to be part of a large national project which will provide them with a sense of pride and achievement which is sometimes the boost that those facing barriers need.

He said programs such as Career Start had the potential to "build someone's confidence which can change their lives".

"A program that provides an opportunity of employment, training and industry exposure can only be a good thing," he said.

Mr Shaw said there was a shortage of quality trained skilled workers on the Coast.



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