Strong employment growth looks set to continue in 2018, with online jobs board SEEK posting a nearly 15 per cent surge in job ads compared to a year earlier, with smaller states and territories leading the charge.
In January 2018, new job advertisements surged by 14.7 per cent compared with the same month last year, with a number of industries seeing double-digit rises.
“We’re seeing a strong national demand for STEM skills – science, technology, engineering and mathematics – which reflects a global talent shortage,” said SEEK ANZ managing director Kendra Banks.
“This ’talent shortage’ has been identified by Australian CEOs as one of their top business risk areas, but it also creates huge competitive job opportunities for Australians with engineering and IT skills.”
By far the largest growth in job ads came from the mining, resources and energy sector, up by 54 per cent, reflecting the improving outlook and surging prices for minerals.
Trades and services is also heavily scouting for new staff, with the sector posting a 31 per cent lift in job ads. This was followed by the engineering (25 per cent) and science and technology (22 per cent).
Meanwhile, the government and defence, HR and recruitment, and consulting and strategy sectors all saw gains of 21 per cent.
Ms Banks noted that local government is also on a hiring splurge this year, with more than 1,200 job openings currently being advertised – almost a third (31 per cent) higher than a year ago.
At the other end of the spectrum, banking and financial services as well as call centre and customer service posted modest rises of just 3 per cent. The advertising, arts and media industry was the only one to see job ads fall, down by 8 per cent.
On a state-by-state basis, the Northern Territory and Tasmania recorded the highest increases in job vacancies, up 27 per cent and 26.4 per cent respectively.
Next was South Australia (22.8 per cent), followed by WA (18.6 per cent), Victoria (17 per cent) and Queensland (16.6 per cent).
Trailing the pack, but still scraping into double-digital growth, were NSW and the ACT, up 10.7 per cent and 10.6 per cent, respectively.
Adam Zuchetti is the editor of My Business, and has steered the publication’s editorial direction since early 2016.