Back in the 1980s, when there was a massive increase in university enrolments and attainment, the folk wisdom was that a trade was a good thing to fall back on, if your professional career or business failed, and hence it was probably still worth getting one. The idea that a trade is only something to fall back on seems silly now, with the massive demand for trade skills caused by the resources boom. It will become even harder to find tradies, particularly electricians, and no doubt their rates will substantially increase, as similar stories to this one in Bundaberg emerge across Queensland cities and towns (Hands off our tradies):
A BUNDABERG tradesman has called on mining companies to train their own apprentices, saying their poaching of skilled workers will push Bundaberg into a trades shortage.
In the past six to eight weeks, Laser electrical Bundaberg has lost about half of its workforce to the attraction of mining pay packets.
Managing director Matthew Kummerow said despite having no staff retention problems previously, in the past few weeks two qualified electricians and two apprentices had left for jobs with the mines.
“In the last few months (the mining companies) have been extremely actively recruiting,” he said.