Regional Local Content Advisers supporting business and jobs in WA

Three people standing in front of event banners
Wheatbelt Regional Local Content Adviser Megan Creagh (right) talks to Moorditj Yaakiny RDA Wheatbelt Noongar Enterprise Development Scheme project officer Rob Miles (left) and Main Roads regional manager Craig Manton at a recent enterprise forum to boost opportunities for small and medium sized businesses.

The Local Content Adviser Network (LCAN) is assisting regional businesses throughout Western Australia to capture opportunities for public and private sector contracts to generate growth and jobs.

The LCAN works with State Government agencies and regional small to medium enterprises (SMEs) to improve business competitiveness, by boosting their capacity, capability and confidence to bid for contracts and tenders.

The initiative is being delivered via the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development’s Local Content Advisers, based in the State’s nine Regional Development Commissions.

The program reaches across the State, encompassing rural and remote communities and, a range of SMEs, including Aboriginal businesses.

Connecting suppliers and buyers

Local Content Advisers are experienced facilitators, who work with a range of stakeholders throughout the supply chain to connect suppliers and buyers, while also assisting regional SMEs to be aware of and seize business opportunities in regional WA.

In June this year, the State Government announced $300,000 in funding over three years to boost local content capacity though activities, including events, procurement training workshops, briefings and networking forums to connect buyers and suppliers.

These practical measures are designed to assist SMEs in the regions overcome the tyranny of distance and the lack of opportunities to build capacity and competitiveness in regional WA.

Local Content Advisers can assist regional businesses to:

  • better understand how to sell to government
  • find assistance to build supply chain capability and capacity
  • identify upcoming government supply opportunities
  • identify State and Federal Government financial assistance programs
  • understand their rights and responsibilities under the Western Australian Jobs Act (2017)
  • connect head contractors with subcontractors
  • participate in productivity and business capability activities.

Regional activities

Each of the nine regions in WA has a Local Content Adviser, who has an understanding of the unique nature of the business environment within that region.

The LCAN is tailored to meet the needs and operating environment, given the diversity and scale between the regions of the State.

In the past year, the LCAN has facilitated connections through more than 2470 engagements and interactions with businesses, government and industry stakeholders.

The LCAN has identified the value of regionally based tender briefings, supplier and buyer awareness programs and the opportunity to improve online tender information.

The success of the network can be seen in the Wheatbelt, for example, where businesses won more than 55 per cent of the total worth of single region based contracts last month (July), which is a big win for regional potential, capacity and growth.

The contracts totalled almost $200,000 – which may appear reasonably small but when multiplied through the region, will make a significant difference economic growth and expansion in the community.

Boosting regional growth and jobs

The LCAN is an essential component of the State Government’s broader commitment to drive regional economic growth and jobs.

It supports the government’s Buy Local and Aboriginal Procurement policies, as well as the WA Industry Participation Strategy.

The department and the Commissions have a strong commitment to the LCAN and efforts to grow regional business expertise and entrepreneurship.

By supporting business growth in the regions, the investment will generate flow-on benefits for employment, local economies and community wellbeing.

For more information about the LCAN click here, while more localised information about program is available from Regional Development Commissions.