As we head into the new year, it is worth congratulating everyone for their ongoing persistence and support over the last twelve months as we dealt with and continue to adjust to new working norms with COVID-19.

During the last twelve months, we continued our advocacy work, supporting local industry while participating in a number of virtual events during this time.

Most recently, Local Jobs First Commissioner, Don Matthews headed into retirement. We wish him all the best in this exciting new chapter and thank Mr. Matthews for his ongoing commitment to supporting local industry and his exceptional leadership skills in supporting the Office over the last two years. In the interim, John Butler will take on the role of Acting Local Jobs First Commissioner. John is currently the Executive Director, Global Partnerships & Projects for Global Victoria in the Department of Jobs, Precincts & Regions. John will continue in his current role while managing the Office of the Local Jobs First Commissioner.

The Office of the Local Jobs First Commissioner will continue to focus on its advocacy and engagement functions while providing ongoing opportunities in government procurement for the local industry.

Whilst advocacy and engagement are important components to the work of the office, we also place a strong emphasis on the monitoring and compliance of the Local Jobs First policy.

To date, the Commissioner has ninety-three strategic projects under his remit.

The Office is committed to working in collaboration with all levels of the supply chain to address any concerns or questions regarding the Local Jobs First policy and to support the delivery of these projects.

The Local Jobs First Act 2003 grants the Commissioner compliance powers, enabling the Commissioner the ability to monitor, review and enforce compliance of the Local Jobs First Policy and related commitments and obligations.

All contractors within the supply chain have a legal obligation to adhere to their contractual requirements relating to Local Jobs First. Whilst compliance can be a difficult task, we are here to help.

Compliance provides an opportunity for businesses to streamline organisational processes, identify operational gaps and provides an opportunity to examine the quality of data and information throughout the organisation.

We look forward to continuing our work with you all and encourage you to get in touch should you have any questions.