Posts Tagged ‘multimedia’

 

Geelong is a city going through a turbulent transition, stranded between its history and its future. Its modern legacy as a stronghold of heavy industry – led by Ford, Alcoa and Shell – is fading fast.

Ford has been closing its Geelong manufacturing works for some time, with the final jobs to go by 2016. Alcoa has announced that its ageing aluminium smelter and rolling mill would close in August, at a cost of 800 jobs. Last year Qantas axed just under 300 maintenance jobs at the nearby Avalon Airport and Target sacked 260 workers from its Geelong head office.

Geelong has a long history as a city, and with that, a long history of being able to rebuild itself from problems past. There is little doubt Geelong will reinvent itself as a smart city of the future on the back of its tourism, agriculture and, service industries, as well as its role as a port, and  its role as a hub for new industry, such as carbon fibre manufacturing.

The inevitable and immediate pain of future uncertainty looms for Geelong’s recently unemployed. One of the major problems with widespread job cuts to similar industries to an area in a short period of time is that it creates a situation where there are too many workers looking for what little work is still available. As Professor Louse Johnson explained during my interview with her, about one third of workers will find work in a similar industry, maintaining a similar standard of living; another third will find work in lesser jobs, reducing their standard of living. For the other third, it’s unlikely that they will work again. The question of whether to remain in Geelong, the bedrock of many workers’ lives, beckons also.

Fitter and turner Jay Craven, 24, was made redundant by Ford in Geelong in an early wave of job cuts. The atmosphere of redundancy is not a good one. The media seem to know information before the workers do, and there’s a general sense of despondency in the air as colleagues and friends turn on each other in a battle for job survival.

Whilst many of his colleagues tried to find work in and around Geelong to varying degrees of success, Jay decided to apply for a jobs in Melbourne. After a period of applying for jobs without luck, a family friend suggested he apply for a maintenance job at Yarra Trams. When he found out that he got the job, the decision to head down the highway was an easy one. Unlike some of his colleagues whom were rentrenched in Geelong with homes and young families, Jay’s only attachment was a sentimental one, having lived in the area his whole life.

Jay now lives in Preston with his sister, who also works in Melbourne. He is really enjoying the change, believing his fresh start will allow him to better develop a career and grow as a person. No one likes seeing people lose their jobs, but for Jay, redundancy was was the catalyst for a positive change in his life.

Although our nation is a developed one, driven by the revolution of technology and communication, the force that social media extends upon many industries is one that is often overlooked. The many ways that it impacts social elements in everyday contexts are one thing, but the ability it has given the unemployed is another. With many people still struggling to find work, moving the search to this online format has opened up a range of opportunities to job seekers that was never available before.

Traditional job boards such as Career One and SEEK have long upheld the employment search on the internet, but with the integration of social media into the business world, these websites are beginning to give way to a new kind of interactive tool for the unemployed. Those who are comfortable enough to use social media to find potential vacancies within their skillsets and job fields are finding work easier than they ever had previously. Additionally, businesses are able to minimise the efforts and costs of associated with traditional employment procedures by headhunting in circles of networks within their own social media professional networks.

Australia currently sits at one of the lowest rates of unemployment in the world, but the challenge for those without jobs is still a more prominent issue. Being able to spot work where it is available demands attention and constant monitoring of print medias, but the rise of the social media-business relationship means followers of certain companies can be contacted as soon as perspective job opportunities become available. Social media websites like LinkedIn are dominating the traditional resume and CV by enabling users to display their skills, experience and connections in a public space, whilst allowing those who view their profile to endorse them for their work efforts—what better way to advertise your abilities than to show them off in a global context?

Businesses are flocking to online sources to fill openings within their companies by using social media forums liked the aforementioned LinkedIn, the infamous Facebook and even Twitter to personally headhunt the perfect individual to become a part of their team. No longer do they have to go through the tedious task of interviewing without knowing what they’re truly going to get.

Not all Australians feel satisfied yet with replacing the face-to-face communication of traditional job seeking with social media, but its bound to become a major player in the way businesses go about driving their futures.