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Launching into opportunities

Staff shortages have long been an issue in Gisborne but one company is ready to help while also growing itself.

Recruitment and human resources company People Plus has operated out of Trust Tairawhiti's co-working space Launch! for the past 12 months. Company director Jenny Currie says Launch! provided excellent facilities and networking opportunities to grow their business, and they now need larger premises.

“We are preparing to move to our new office on Stanley Road. The future for us will be focused on supporting our clients with all stages of the employment life cycle and ensuring businesses meet their obligations under employment and health and safety legislation.

“Pre-Covid, the Gisborne region was experiencing a labour shortage which put pressure on employers seeking qualified staff to meet operational requirements. For some sectors this will change, but for the majority of our core local industry this will remain a challenge for employers.

“It's now more important than ever to focus on recruiting the right employees and ensuring you can provide them with opportunities to grow and develop with your business.”

Launch! manager Simon White said the co-working space was now two years into its operation and had managed to come out of the Covid-19 lockdown in good shape.

“It really could have gone either way. When we closed down due to Covid-19, I wasn't sure if people would be coming back after getting used to working from home.

“When we reopened, we had numerous Launch! whanau continue to work from home. However, an increase in new individuals joining has created a lot of positive vibes.”

Put simply, co-working residents (who are often self-employed) pay for shared use of facilities such as meeting rooms, printing and coffee, but perhaps most importantly, the chance to work collaboratively with other residents.

“The value of our space is largely in the people who work here.”

Some events in the pipeline for Launch! include e-commerce workshops and start-up support events to help people mitigate the chance of failure through validating their ideas.

“The goal of these events is to get people talking about business and increase our region's ability to seek out and find new opportunities.”

Simon has signalled that Launch! co-working is looking to host more events that support business growth, substitutability, and innovation.

CO-WORKERS: Launch! co-working space manager Simon White is pictured with People Plus team members Summah Thorpe (left, HR partner), Jenny Currie (director), Micky Fenn and Megan Newman (business support partners). Picture by Liam Clayton