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Unemployed should move to a new area, data shows

Australian Bureau of Statistics

Unemployed Australians who relocate to a new area are more likely to find work than those who stay put, according to an analysis of census data by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

The ABS analysed workforce data garnered from both the 2011 and 2016 census and found that after changing where they lived, almost two-thirds (64 per cent) of unemployed Aussies found work.

That compares with just over half (57 per cent) who found employment while remaining in the same place.


In presenting its findings, the ABS has produced a series of maps which compare employment statistics by region over the five-year period, showing employers and jobseekers alike where the biggest gains, and losses, have happened.

“Using New South Wales as an example, we know that in 2011 there were 61,000 unemployed people living outside the Greater Sydney area,” said Celia Moss, the bureau’s data integration partnerships program manager.

“By 2016, half of the 53,000 who stayed in the region were employed, while in contrast two-thirds of the 3,000 people who moved to Greater Sydney were employed.”

Looking to its southern neighbour, Ms Moss said that 94 per cent of the people living in Greater Melbourne in 2011 were still in the area in 2016, and that 88 per cent of them were employed in 2016.



“[But] of those 42,000 people who had moved from Greater Melbourne to regional Victoria by 2016, around 80 per cent were employed,” she said.

At a national level, more than half of the people who identified as being unemployed in 2011 were earning some form of income in 2016. And that work tended to be full-time.

“Overall, almost 60 per cent of those unemployed in 2011 were employed in 2016. These workers were more likely to be full-time than part-time, particularly if they moved regions,” Ms Moss said.

“Nearly 60 per cent of employed people in 2016 who had moved regions were full-time and 35 per cent were part-time.”

Adam Zuchetti

Adam Zuchetti

Adam Zuchetti is the editor of My Business, and has steered the editorial direction of the publication since the beginning of 2016. Before joining My Business, he worked on fellow Momentum Media titles The Adviser and Mortgage Business.

The two-time Publish Awards finalist has an extensive journalistic career across business, property and finance, including a four-year stint in the UK. Adam has written across both consumer and business titles, including for News Corp Australia and Domain.

You can email Adam at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Unemployed should move to a new area, data shows
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