These Are The Most In-Demand Jobs And Skills In Australia

These Are The Most In-Demand Jobs And Skills In Australia

This week, ManpowerGroup released its 11th annual Talent Shortage Survey which takes a snapshot of the most in-demand occupations in Australia. It found that 38 per cent of Australian employers are having difficulties filling job vacancies due to talent shortages. If you’re looking for work (or a high-paying career change), these are the skills you should be training up in.

This year’s result is down four percentage points compared to last year, making it the lowest level since 2007. Nevertheless, there are still plenty of professions that are failing to meet demand in Australia, with skilled trades and engineers leading the pack.

“It’s a positive sign to see this year’s results are at the lowest level since before the GFC, but that’s not to say there aren’t still challenges for employers when it comes to sourcing and securing the right talent,” Richard Fischer, ManpowerGroup ANZ managing director said in a statement.

“Looking at the current economic outlook for Australia, it’s unlikely this talent shortage figure will continue to drop significantly. Especially when looking at highly skilled industries such as the IT sector, where demand is likely to rise even further in the coming years as roles around integration of mobile application, solutions and cloud computing rapidly increase.”

According to the 1500 employers in the survey, the top three reasons positions have been difficult to fill were lack of experience (23%), lack of available applicants (21%) and lack of hard skills (20%). Here are the top ten positions that were hardest to fill in 2016.

Jobs most in demand in 2016 in Australia:

  1. Skilled trades
  2. Engineers
  3. Management/executives
  4. Sales representatives
  5. IT staff
  6. Accounting and finance staff
  7. Doctors and other non-nursing health professionals
  8. Technicians
  9. Office support staff
  10. Drivers

This is quite similar to last year’s list, although the rankings have hopped around a bit. (The change is largely down to the construction boom, driven by large infrastructure projects across Victoria and New South Wales which has increased the demand for skilled trades and engineers.)

Jobs most in demand in 2015 in Australia:

  1. Skilled trades
  2. Management/executives
  3. Sales representatives
  4. Engineers
  5. Technicians
  6. Labourers
  7. Accounting and finance staff
  8. Drivers
  9. IT professionals
  10. Office support staff

The survey also showed that 76 per cent of employers are responding to talent shortages by training and developing existing employees to fill open positions. This is good news if you’re looking to branch out into a new position with your current employer — they could potentially ‘upskill’ you for free.

“We’re seeing an increased importance on what we call ‘learnability’, which is the desire and aptitude to learn new skills,” Fischer said.

“This attribute will help individuals become and stay employable throughout their career journey, and materialises a trend we believe will continue over the coming years… Organisations are choosing to invest in upskilling and traineeships. If employers can’t find the perfect fit, they seek the ‘teachable’ fit and invest in their employees.”

You won’t know until you ask.

[Via Business Insider]


  • I am an engineer and I have a few mates in accounting and IT…. They and people they know struggle to find work in their fields. Engineering is the same. When you leave uni, the competitive nature of finding a grad position is absolutely cut throat because there are not enough positions to go around…. to hear that there is a supposed shortage in these fields is baffling.

    • @stargrinder I draw your attention to the following:

      “…the top three reasons positions have been difficult to fill were lack of experience (23%), lack of available applicants (21%) and lack of hard skills (20%).”

      A qualification is usually not enough, an employer wants someone with a proven track record
      who they don’t need to hand hold. Getting that experience is tough for any graduate.

      • Grad positions shouldn’t require experience or a “proven track record”…. They are supposed to be entry level positions for people with no experience.

        More to the point, that’s a total cop out (from employers, not you). “THERE IS NO GOOD TALENT WE CAN’T HIRE ANYONE” …….. so hire one of the hundreds of grad engineers at your door and train them….. create the goddamn talent.

      • This article is so misleading. I have 30 years experience in IT and i’ve managed to get 2 interviews in 1 year of looking for work. Sure the IT profession is in demand, but what this article doesn’t make obvious is that the supply far exceeds the demand. Then there is the fiasco the government still hasn’t fixed up allowing over 100,000 457 visa IT workers to Australia, lowering the wage and making it even harder for locals to get a job.

    • Architecture here – same deal.

      “Wanted, graduate with 5 years postgrad experience”

      Now with just a few years experience, everyone wants a slice of you but I would have called 200+ offices before finding my first job (which ended up through a family friend luckily).

      Whether this is a problem with the universities not teaching us any practical/useful skills or businesses not willing to train staff is up for debate I suppose.

  • As an Accountant in WA – there is no skills shortage in Accounting or Engineering. Demand is lukewarm.

  • As others have mentioned, “skills shortage” articles always seem poorly researched. Sure, employers always claim that there is a skills shortage. What employer doesn’t want to have highly experienced professionals willing to work for graduate level pay? But the real world doesn’t that way, which is why they can’t find people to hire. Those highly experienced professionals are getting hired by companies who are willing to pay them for their experience. If your company isn’t willing to compete by paying more, you have to settle for less.

    It’s like someone claiming there is a “job shortage” when their expectations involve getting paid tons for doing very little. Obviously every industry is going to have a “job shortage” if that’s your expectation. HR often seems to have ridiculous expectations, and the irony is that they are causing the company massive losses by refusing to fill positions.

    Which do you think is more beneficial to the company, either hire and train a graduate immediately, or spend 6 months + whining that people with 10+ years of experience aren’t willing to work for graduate level pay, while the position remains unfilled and nobody is doing the necessary work? And to make things even more dumb, some companies then resort to paying recruitment agencies to look for professionals overseas and then paying ridiculous amounts of moneys to get them to move to another country.

    I remember a time where HR left my department with no manager for months because they allegedly could not find a “qualified candidate”. They refused to consider anyone in the department for the position (no explanation was provided). During this period, most managerial duties were left untouched which caused repeated project delays (I got so many complaints from other departments about this), and two employees had to handle the critical managerial tasks on an ad-hoc basis (might as well have promoted one of them from the get go if they were gonna be forced to do it anyway). After several months, they finally brought in a guy with no relevant experience and which I had to train. If they were going to hire someone with no experience, they could have gotten one in under a week just by putting an ad in the newspaper. Or you know, promote one of the employees who has relevant experience and is already working in the department.

    “Skills shortage” or HR having unrealistic expectations and making poor decisions? You decide…

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