By Nick Carne
The Hahndorf Inn has found that since employing two young Chinese graduates to help with marketing and business development two years ago, it has had to almost double its total staff numbers to cope with the growth generated.
Annual sales have risen by $2 million, driven mainly by Chinese tourists who are finding it easier to learn about the historic hotel, like the look of what they see, and appreciate the attention to their needs when they get there – a direct result of the influence the Chinese graduates have had on business operations.
That’s the kind of success story that is driving an innovative new Study Adelaide campaign to link more local companies and organisations with students or new graduates who have unique skills and market knowledge. Via an Employer Portal, employers can be put in touch with the right people at Adelaide’s universities and higher education providers to discuss their needs and find out what pool of talent is ready and willing to assist.
“It is a winner all around,” said Chief Executive Karyn Kent. “We know many international students want to stay on in Adelaide and there are roles they are uniquely equipped to fill because they have the language and the international cultural insights. And if it helps businesses to grow, that creates more jobs for others.”
Jobs can be full-time, part-time or temporary. In some cases, they could be work placements that students need to complete as part of their course. And under new visa rules, businesses don’t need to sponsor graduates who have obtained the post-study 485 visa; they can be employed in the same way as an Australian citizen or permanent resident, for up to four years.
Chinese students are an obvious target, and the Hahndorf Inn’s success is mirrored by that of Wines by Geoff Hardy in McLaren Vale, which attributes a huge increase in orders from China to its decision to employ a Chinese graduate.
However, Ms Kent says there are plenty of other opportunities for businesses wanting to explore new markets. She points to FCT Flames, the Adelaide-based company which has become the world’s dominant supplier of flame effects since grabbing global attention for creating the cauldron at the Sydney Olympics.
The company recently had a Saudi Arabian student research the World Expo in 2020 in the UAE and the FIFA World Cup in Qatar in 2022 and a Peruvian student provide insights into major sporting opportunities in South America following the Rio Olympics.
You can read more about these three success stories – and the campaign – at the Study Adelaide Employer Portal.