0034 Motor Trades Association of Australia Limited (MTAA)

General information

Submitterʼs name
Motor Trades Association of Australia Limited (MTAA)
Submitted on behalf of
Professional body or industry association

About the submission

Is your organisation an Approved Sponsor for any of the following programs?
  • Temporary Work (Skilled) (Subclass 457) visa program
  • Employer Nomination Scheme (Subclass 186) visa program
  • Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (Subclass 187) visa program
  • Labour agreements
Please select the industry your submission is in relation to. If required, you may select multiple industries.
Education and Training
Retail Trade
Transport Postal and Warehousing
Wholesale Trade
Please identify which occupations your submission relates to:
Certain categories of occupations (eg professionals, managers or tradespeople)
What occupation categories does your submission apply to?
Technicians and Trades Workers
Machinery Operators and Drivers


1. Are there additional labour market factors, for which there are national datasets available (ideally aligned to 6-digit ANZSCO occupation level), that are relevant to future refinements to the Departmentʼs analysis and methodology?

What is the frequency of data release?

Official industry and occupational statistical classifications such as ANZSIC and ANZSCO now work poorly for the automotive industry as they fail to adequately categorise and enumerate sectors such as Marine, Bicycles, Agricultural Machinery Retailing and Repairs, Outdoor Power Equipment, Towing and others nor discrete professions considered integral, or unified by the same qualification and /or skills training requirements, to the automotive industry.

MTAA and Members undertake extensive modelling of available automotive industry data (including ABS); develop other sources of information, including automotive business surveys; to better identify the economic and social footprint of the automotive industry and give added rigour to trends including skills shortages.

This modelling and research in 2017 have shown the highest ever recorded skills shortage at 27,377 across numerous automotive professions and expected to worsen in 2018. The decision to remove vehicle painters from the skilled occupation list that underpins the new Temporary Skill Shortage Visa is demonstrated to be flawed when this sectoral research clearly shows that ANZSCO and advertising statistics did not reflect the actual sector shortages in this discrete profession and inability to satisfy demand from existing labour market.

There are significant labour market issues impacting the automotive industry, which cannot be reflected in national datasets alone.

2. The Department is also seeking submissions on suitable datasets that are disaggregated by region. Please provide details if you are aware of such a dataset, including whether it is aligned to ANZSCO occupations and how often the dataset is updated.

The Department should engage in a strengthened relationship /partnership with the MTAA and its Members, who have thousands of business constituents nationwide in almost every community. The Associations have grassroots access to the automotive industry at a State by Territory and local government jurisdiction level which provides significant capability in drilling down to matters impacting the automotive industry.

The Department is strongly encouraged to examine the MTAA and Members automotive industry directions report released in August 2017. This comprehensive report is an amalgam of ABS data, other sources of industry data and qualified and quantified through industry participant surveys and consultation.

This report breaks down key indicators including skills shortages nationally and on a State and Territory jurisdiction level. Some gathered data can also be further examined on discrete businesses in discrete locations and regions.

MTAA suggests that with the automotive industry and sectors within it undergoing a significant structural adjustment, the revised methodology being investigated by the Department must contain the capacity to use other available sources of information in determining outcomes.

The MTAA and Members elected to undertake this modelling and analysis with the cessation of industry scans by the then skills council. In the opinion of the MTAA is the only current reliable data on the automotive industry.

3. Is there any other advice or evidence that the Department should consider in its review of the methodology?

Skill shortages in the Australian Automotive Industry are at the particularly severe within the automotive industry and are forecast to intensify over the next two years.The lack of supply of
suitably skilled labour is impacting almost half of all automotive businesses, holding back both business investment and growth.

The Automotive Industry and almost all sectors within it are undergoing significant transition and a 'one size fits all' or economy-wide solutions, will not assist this industry as it adapts through structural adjustment. Significant influences are impacting traditional employment channels including diminishing labour pool, the transition of qualified professionals into their own businesses, perceptions of some automotive trades, changing professions, quality of labour, and retention. While it is the desire and objective of MTAA, Members and their business constituents to employ Australians, encourage apprentices and retain them, this is proving extremely difficult and alternative options must continue to be available.

Some sectors have long since given up on traditional or online recruitment advertising for skilled automotive professionals in many discrete trades. Yet job placement advertisement statistics have remained in use in methodologies for determining inclusion on the skilled migration list.

National datasets are not conclusive. Periodic consolidation of ANZSCO codes has had the impact of some entire sectors and many discrete professions not being recognised at all. Overlay this baseline with characteristics of a transitioning industry, sectors, and professions within it, it becomes even less reliable.

The MTAA strongly suggests that for an industry like Automotive that the Department, in addition to the methodology, utilises strategic partnership with the MTAA and its Members to not only gather information but to evaluate strengths and weaknesses of future arrangements and outcomes. The MTAA and Members have significant reach into urban, rural and regional Australia in terms of the Automotive industry and the role of this industry.

The MTAA strongly recommends the Department analyse the Automotive Directions 2018 report released in August 2017 and the underlying research and analysis contained in this report. MTAA believes it to be the most comprehensive examination of the automotive industry in recent time and extends beyond the reference terms adopted in previous Department of Industry environmental scans.

This report, as well as the grassroots feedback and input from thousands of automotive businesses nationwide, gives the MTAA its belief of the need for specific, targeted and beneficial skilled migration to enable the industry to continue to maintain a 20 million strong national vehicle fleet.
Do you have any supporting material for your submission?
Yes (see attachments)

These files have not been modified and are published as supplied

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Last modified on Friday 10 November 2017 [38991|92471]