20 A total of 140 Public Service positions were reported by departments as being vacant for more than three months due to skill shortages9 in the year to 30 June 1999. In the same period, Public Service departments recruited just over 5,500 people. These 140 skill shortage vacancies represented an increase on the number reported in the year to 30 June 1998 (97 vacancies), but less than the number reported for the year to 30 June 1997 (207).
21 Figure 4 below shows skill shortage vacancies reported for the year to 30 June 1999, classified by occupation group10. Social workers, policy analysts, and finance and accounting professionals each formed more than 15% of the reported vacancies. These occupations, along with computing/information technology staff and legal professionals, have featured consistently in the skill shortage surveys. A number of occupations have been reported as skill shortage vacancies for the first time in this year's survey, including debt collectors, scientists, emergency management staff, and labour and mining inspectors.
Figure 4: Skill Shortage Vacancies for year to 30 June 1999 by Occupation
9A skill shortage is defined as a vacant position meeting the following criteria:
10Those occupations classified as 'other' include administrative/clerical, psychologist, scientist, human resources, researcher/statistician, surveyor/cartographer, conservation staff, emergency management staff, labour and mining inspectors.