First published November 15, 2013
Pembrokeshire is a diverse place, well renowned for the natural beauty of the environment, the beaches, the castles, the activities and attractions. Throw in a good mix of farming and the contrast of the energy sector, and it really does make for a ‘patchwork’ of work and play.
Of course people involved in all of the above, and those who perhaps aren’t, need somewhere to live, and somewhere to shop. In the last few weeks there has been news of various developments, both housing and retail, that will of course bring with them a flurry of new jobs.
A new housing estate, and Sainsbury’s store, are due to build in Haverfordwest. Reports indicate that there will be something in the region of 700 jobs created. There are, as always, divisions within the local community about the project – some welcome it, and the promised jobs, others are less keen, fearing that it will have a negative impact on the community, and in turn that jobs will be displaced and lost long term.
Without a crystal ball, it is very hard to determine who is right. Perhaps both sides have a point. Of course there will be a run of job creation in the first phase, as construction workers are required to build the homes, build the supermarket, and all the infrastructure around that. Once the build is complete, obviously there will be some job losses, but who knows, maybe by then there will be another project happening somewhere else in the county that will require those workers.
When the supermarket is completed, it will need staff to run it. Yes, the senior store management team is likely to be brought in from elsewhere in the country in the first instance, but over time those posts could be filled by local workers. The store staff from cleaners, to section assistants, to checkout operators, will be local. Now it is well known that retail can be a tricky trade, the basic contracts are sometimes fairly low, and as with many sectors there are seasonal fluctuations which will see jobs being created on a short term contract basis.
However, in an economic climate where things have been ‘tight’ for some time, news of job creation is a good thing. The knock on effect of those new jobs is also good. As people are able to earn more, they then have more to spend. They will need somewhere to spend it. Many people locally will want to spend their money locally, which in turn will create a demand for new outlets. And so the cycle goes on.
The key thing to remember though whenever you consider new jobs, is the vitally important ‘people’ element. Recruiters will be looking for the right people for the right job, and candidates will be looking for the right job and right employer for them. As such, now is the time that candidates and clients alike need to think about what they are really looking for – it is far more important to take a little more time when creating and filling a job to make sure that the right person is in post, than rush to fill a vacancy then find the person leaves a few weeks or months later and end up spending more time and money on the process.
Over the next few weeks, we’ll be looking more closely at the jobs being created by the housing development, the supermarket, and of course the Debenhams department store also due to open in Haverfordwest. Just what will these developments mean in real terms? What opportunities will they bring? What potential challenges may need to be overcome? We’d love to hear your thoughts too, so please do get involved via the comments below.