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Using TikTok to connect all ‘jobstars’

A Gisborne tech start-up is helping the nation’s horticulture picking shortage by taking to social media platform TikTok to fill “hundreds” of jobs.

The fledgling company, founded by Gisborne’s Candice Pardy, has launched a three to six month social media campaign, after bringing five top Kiwi influencers together in Gisborne to assist in signing up new ‘Jobstars’ to fill hundreds of live jobs in Horticulture around Gisborne and the rest of New Zealand.

“The influencers have a combined TikTok following of over 2.9 million @uncletics, @unclejacktai, @judaxx, @whoisbuskey & @nixonsto with many Gizzy locals rushing up to them on the main street to take pictures during meal breaks,” the company’s head of marketing and community Kristy Burden said.

“We spent a couple of hours visiting different orchard sites in the region where the team of content creators all in their early to mid-twenties directed, shot and edited a variety of exciting content for us. The content creation was quick — these guys can produce a final version in minutes, a true craft.

“After the mahi was done we spent time meeting local school children at Kaiti Mall, Wainui and the skatepark, who were so excited to see the crew who they instantly recognised from TikTok in their hometown.”

Jobloads is a job marketplace helping people find meaning and thrive at work. The app puts respect for the human rights of every worker in the supply chain at its centre. Miss Burden said the new campaign, which is independent of the government’s Help the Harvest campaign to recruit pickers, would run for three to six months.

“We are an app connecting growers with a screened workforce, we just identified where our audience was and that was on TikTok and so we took the plunge to give it a go, something that really hasn’t been done before.

“It was quite a big investment but it’s already paying off and we have had 15 new Jobstar applications just in the first ten hours.

“We are hiring for hundreds of jobs — there are 15 live jobs in Gisborne but there are hundreds in Auckland, Taupo and most of the North Island.”

Job vacancies were for apple and kiwi fruit and potentially wine growers in Marlborough also.

“We also verify the growers we work with and we are really trying to lift standards in terms of pay and the environment and what people are learning on-site. So, we are not just verifying the people who are going to work, we are also verifying the growers to make it better for everybody,” Miss Burden said.

Jobloads: Influencers: Leighton Clarke (Uncle Tics) Jack Tai Poa (Uncle Jack) Nixon Stoddart, and Bhaskar Sharma (Buskey) and Judah Metu-Teaukura (front). Picture by Andonov Agency.