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Know your industry

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Labour market information is an excellent, though sometimes overlooked, tool in career planning. Knowing about job trends, the skills employers are looking for, which industries are hiring, where jobs are located, and areas of job growth or decline, will help you design your degree and plan for your future.

Jobs and Skills Australia provide a range of different reports. Here are a few examples we’d suggest accessing regularly during your studies.

Recruitment Experiences and Outlook Survey

TheRecruitment Experiences and Outlook Survey (REOS) is a monthly survey involving at least 1,000 employers. The topics reported on are recruitment activity, difficulty in recruiting staff and expectations of increasing staff levels. The latest REOS data indicates that recruitment activity has softened across all states and territories compared with 2022, and that Western Australia recorded the highest recruitment rate (55%) of any state.

This survey is useful in identifying seasonal recruitment patterns, comparing recruitment across Australian states, and differentiating recruitment in state capitals and the remainder of each state.

Nowcast of Employment by Region and Occupation Dashboard

The Nowcast of Employment by Region and Occupation (NERO) dashboard provides experimental data on the current employment by occupation in each region, highlighting changes in comparison with historical levels, using the technique of nowcasting. The data indicates the number of people currently employed in various occupations as well as the one-year and five-year change information. You can search this data by occupation or region/postcodes.

For example, the NERO dashboard shows that there are 7863 actuaries, mathematicians and statisticians employed in Australia, with a forecast 28% increase in opportunities in 5 years.

Internet Vacancy Index

The Internet Vacancy Index (IVI) is a monthly data series measuring online job advertisements. The IVI counts new job advertisements submitted to the SEEK, CareerOne and Workforce Australia online job boards. The monthly report provides a snapshot of labour market conditions, as well as a more detailed analysis of a particular labour market segment – for example, in May the report focused on health and education professionals, in September it provided insights into entry-level occupations and youth employment.

Did you know that the demand for sales assistants has increased by 55.9% or 4,600 job advertisements over the last five years? This could be an area for you to target to build your transferable skills while completing your course.

Employment Projections

Employment projections is a much-needed guide to the likely future direction of the jobs market. Jobs and Skills Australia has commissioned Victoria University to produce employment projections to 2033, using their Victoria University Employment Forecasting Model. This data is presented over a five-year period to highlight the shorter-term trends, and over a 10-year horizon to show the impact of longer-term or structural trends.

The latest data shows, over the next five to ten years, employment is projected to increase across all 19 broad industries, all eight broad occupational groups, and for those with a bachelor’s degree or higher.

When conducting your own labour market research, make sure to use trusted resources, like government websites or professional associations, and always check the publishing date. And, while labour market information can help you make informed career choices, you also need to consider your interests and personal and financial needs.

Want to begin researching labour market information relevant to you? The Know Your Industry module in the Explore Your Options Challenge is a great starting point.

This article was written by Career Development Consultant, Mark Anderson.

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