HASANZ report highlights challenges

19 December 2019

In November, the Health and Safety Association of New Zealand (HASANZ) published the ‘Building the Professions’ report which provides a picture of New Zealand’s health and safety workforce, as well as future challenges and demands facing the profession across both public and private sectors.

Read the ‘Building the Professions’ report(external link).

The report provides an overview of issues for seven health and safety professions including health and safety generalists. It identifies current capacity and capability gaps across all disciplines and estimates demand for health and safety professionals in New Zealand will grow by at least 2,100 people over the next 10 years.

The report also highlights low maturity across the profession, with most disciplines lacking appropriate competency frameworks, access to quality education and training, and continued professional development.

The HASANZ report reaffirms the findings of the Government Health & Safety Lead (GHSL)’s Workforce Survey published earlier in 2019, around the demands and challenges of recruiting, remunerating, developing and retaining H&S professionals, particularly in the generalist space.

To address these issues, the GHSL has started to work with HASANZ, other sector groups and government agencies to improve systemic gaps in internal processes and develop sector wide initiatives. The Government Health and Safety Intern Programme, which is now its third year, and a pilot graduate programme which will be launched in 2020 are two initiatives that aim to address the issues around long-term capability and capacity.

The GHSL has also started working on a competency framework and career development pathway to provide a platform for common job roles, in addition to regular forums and events which will continue to build professional development and create a strong community of practice across Government. Keep an eye on our website for more in the space as work progresses.

For more information on the Government Health and Safety Intern Programme and the Graduate Programme contact our Senior Advisor Workforce and Development, deborah.bridge@mpi.govt.nz.