An aggressive marketing strategy and a national website to funnel local jobseekers to seasonal work have resulted in 181 jobs filled in Tasmania.
The federally funded and managed Harvest Trail website was launched in July to help labour-hire companies attract and fill the hundreds of seasonal agriculture jobs across the country.
In Tasmania, the Harvest Trail website is part of a marketing campaign launched by the state government, to encourage locals to give seasonal work a try, ahead of a predicted shortfall of workers due to border controls.
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The website launched in July and has had 234,731 pageviews and 154,031 unique pageviews nationally.
There were 7346 Tasmanian horticulture positions advertised on the website by employers and employment service providers.
Harvest season will begin in the next few weeks in Tasmania and a national report released last week showed the agricultural workforce has significantly contracted since this time last year.
The report, by peak national industry body AUSVEG, predicted a shortfall of 26,000 people across the country due to COVID-19 border restrictions.
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A spokeswoman for Minister of Employment, Skills, Small and Family Business Michaelia Cash said the website aimed to address harvest recruitment needs across Australia.
"The website provides information for harvest job seekers about working in harvest jobs, details about employment rights and workplace conditions.
"In addition to this, it aims to inform job seekers about what harvest work involves and provide a basic understanding of the work and conditions before they apply for harvest jobs."
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The spokesperson for the Minister did not directly answer a question about whether the Harvest Trail website was doing its job, or if the number of positions filled was an indicator of its success.
However, they said one of its objectives was to increase the number of Australians employed in harvest work "and to improve community understanding of the legal requirements for for and safe harvest work."
The new Harvest Trail services program builds on a previous program called the Harvest Labour Services, which has run for the past 20 years to connect workers with growers and address seasonal labour demands.