Trudy Parsons

Regional district analyzes skills gap

Regional district addresses labour shortages in the region

A launch event was held to introduce stakeholders and community members to the Regional Skills Gap Analysis project at the Vineyard Church in Burns Lake on Nov. 19, 2014.

The project is aimed to develop strategies that would address the regional skills gap. According to a report by the Regional District of Bulkley-Nechako (RDBN), many communities struggle with high unemployment while companies are having difficulty in finding workers with the right skills.

To address this dilemma, the regional district took action to understand this dynamic and respond with a set of initiatives by creating the Regional Skills Gap Analysis project. The project’s main goals include identifying and filling labour market gaps; increasing the skill level of residents in the RDBN to secure employment; attracting skilled employees to the region; supporting regional businesses by sourcing skilled labour; and enhancing programming options at regional colleges.

The project was completed in January 2014, and the final report that identifies recommended goals and strategic actions was adopted by the regional district’s board of directors.

Approximately 30 individuals from across the region are part of the Strategic Workforce Opportunities Team (SWOT), a group responsible to ensure the implementation of actions recommended in the Regional Skills Gap Analysis. The SWOT includes regional stakeholders representing education, industry, employment, economic development, local government and First Nations.

The regional district hired the services of a community development consulting firm called Millier Dickinson Blais to assist them in the creation of this project. Trudy Parsons, director of workforce development for Millier Dickinson Blais, was the speaker during the launch event in Burns Lake, helping the community understand what steps have been taken to develop the project.

The first step to develop the Regional Skills Gap Analysis was to hold consultations with different groups in order to understand the dynamics of labour supply and demand. Later, “consultation themes” were defined in order to summarize the key findings of the consultations. A set of strategies were then created, as well as recommended actions for each strategy. Some of the strategies include supporting small and medium enterprises to address human resources needs and preparing local labour force through career engagement and skills development.

However, the project doesn’t specify how each recommended action is going to be implemented, nor does it provide specific timelines apart from classifying them into “short, medium or long term.” The RDBN did not comment on this regard by press time. For more details about the project, visit


Just Posted

Charlie Rensby wins council seat in Burns Lake

He received 55 votes while Bruce Martens received 43

Fire department currently recruiting

Four additional members are being sought

Bill Konkin Citizen of the Year nominations open

Editor: This prestigious award is presented annually to residents of the Lakes… Continue reading

Trio performance delights Burns Lake audience

“This is the kind of performance that shows the value of live… Continue reading

CN train derails near New Hazelton

The cars were carrying approximately 100 tons of coal each

Initiation tournament in Burns Lake

The littlest Burns Lake Bruins hosted a tournament at the Tom Forsyth… Continue reading

VIDEO: Fuel truck and train collide in B.C. causing massive fire

More emergency crews are still arriving on scene of a massive fire at the Port Coquitlam rail yard.

Back to work: U.S. government shutdown ends after Democrats relent

Short-term spending measure means both sides could see another shutdown stalemate in three weeks

Man lives despite malfunctioning defibrillator at B.C. arena

A middle-aged man went into cardiac arrest after at game at Pitt Meadows Arena last Wednesday.

Cause of Northern B.C. seaplane crash released

TSB releases report on seaplane crash during a water landing in 2016 near First Nations community

Vancouver police crack down on pop-up pot vendors

Officers raided merchants’ tables on Robson Square late Sunday

Bell Media, NFL take appeal over Super Bowl ad rules to top court

At issue is a ban on substituting American ads with Canadian ones during the game’s broadcast

Crown seeks 4.5 years jail for B.C. woman convicted of counselling tax evasion

Debbie Anderson the latest from group to face jail for teaching debunked ‘natural person’ theory

UPDATE: Brother of B.C. teen killed by stray bullet says the death left a void

Alfred Wong, 15, was gunned down in Vancouver while on his way home from dinner with his family

Most Read