New Zealand businesses will have access to an international talent pool as a result of the bubble with Australia.

The Australian Government is inviting hotels and other employers of seasonal and casual workers, especially in regional areas, to have their say on addressing skill shortages through the Working Holiday Maker (WHM) visa program.

Hotels can contribute to the survey, which is being conducted through a collaboration between Flinders University and the Australian Trade and Investment Commission (Austrade). The poll is eager to speak to businesses which have either employed or tried to employ foreign workers taking part in the visa scheme. The survey was last conducted in 2009, with researchers eager to update their understanding about whether the program was delivering positive outcomes for visitors and employers.

From Flinders University, the survey is being conducted by a team of four researchers – Professor John Spoehr, Dr Ann-Louise Hordacre, Dr Sara Howard and Ms Cecelia Moretti.

Hotels are being invited to help shape the direction for the WHM visa to address labour shortages.

Key objectives for the study include examining the perceptions of Australia among the international community as a destination to work, travel and study; better understand the locations in which visa holders choose to go; and gain insight into the importance of the Working Holiday Maker visa program for businesses, taking into account the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“By providing input into this research, providing your perspective, you will play a key role in ensuring the WHM Program is as strong and responsive as possible in addressing the needs of WHM employers,” the study abstract reads.

“This will likely be of benefit to you if you intend to continue employing WHMs into the future.”

Responses will be entirely confidential and available completely online, with respondents unable to be identified. Findings will be compiled and presented to Austrade in a report to assist in their decision-making processes.

For more information on the study, CLICK HERE or to take part – CLICK HERE.