Upskill West Coast

16 December 2020
Development West Coast
The West Coast's regional employment and training scheme, Upskill, was launched in July to support a robust and resilient West Coast economy that can respond to and recover from the economic impacts of COVID-19.

Upskill West Coast

The Upskill project is managed through Development West Coast, and is supported by funding managed by the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment's Provincial Development Unit.

The Upskill team consists of Project Manager Tania Washer, Employment and Training Consultant Hannah Bailey and Recruitment Coordinator and Administrator Alice Moynihan.

The team are experienced in recruitment, staff training and people development. Targeting skills shortage areas across the region, the team has been working with employers, employees and job seekers to create sustainable employment opportunities, and develop current staff to keep both people and businesses in the region.

The services and support the Upskill team provide includes workplace training support, funding for training of new recruits and working closely with the Ministry of Social Development. Upskill also provides human resource support recruiting unemployed West Coasters into new job opportunities.

Since July, Upskill have had over 200 people register their interest in the initiative and over 80 West Coast businesses are registered.

“Our team has been absolutely flat out working with all kinds of businesses across the West Coast from Karamea to Haast," says Project Manager, Tania Washer.

"So far, we have provided funding and coordinated training plans for 40 people to develop into new roles and progress in their careers.

"We have a further 15 candidates we are in the process of finalising employment placements and training plans for. The benefits of investing in employee training and development are well known, giving our West Coast companies a competitive advantage over others.

"It has been good to build a strong relationship with the industry-training sector of Tai Poutini Polytechnic, as well as bringing in specialist industry trainers as required to the region," says Tania.

DWC Economic Development Manager, Jo Birnie, says: "the Upskill team are making a great impact and assisting businesses to rethink their staffing development for the growth and retention of their business."

Find out more about Upskill

Upskill case studies:


The Upskill team, from left: Tania, Alice and Hannah