Job ads decline, regions fare better than most cities
Cities are seeing less job ad growth than regional areas across much of the country, while nationally job ads are down 8.6% compared to the same time last year. Meanwhile, the average advertised salary is up 3.0% on where it was 12 months ago. Industry-wise, public service sectors are continuing to underpin job ad growth.

See what the trends could mean for you and your industry in this month’s employment snapshot.

Lower spending having an impact

Job ads have declined 8.6% compared to 12 months ago. Kendra Banks, Managing Director, SEEK ANZ says the fall in new job ads demonstrates that many businesses are working with tighter budgets.

“Australia’s GDP growth is at the lowest level since 2009, driven by weaker private sector investment,” Banks says. “Low consumer spending is having a direct impact on business spending, with many companies tightening their budgets, which can include a restriction or freeze on hiring. This can be seen across the country with the visible reduction of new job opportunities.”

However, the average advertised salary, $88,795, is up 3.0% compared to the same time last year. Consulting & Strategy saw 5.0% growth in average salary in this period, followed by Manufacturing, Transport & Logistics with a 4.5% rise.

Growth in health, disability and aged care services

Though job ads are down nationally year-on-year, sectors related to public service are still showing strength and growth in new advertised jobs.

“The recent government spending across industries such as disability, health and aged care services continues to see a healthy employment growth specifically in these sectors, shown by SEEKs 4.6% job ad growth in Healthcare & Medical roles,” Banks says.

Community Services & Development leads the sectors for job ad growth, with a 13.0% increase in new advertised jobs compared to 12 months ago.

Leigh Broderick, SEEK Senior Employment Trends Analyst says the sector has shown consistent strength in the past year.

“Disability and aged services are the standout contributors to that growth, and I don’t see that trend changing,” Broderick says.

“The growth areas of employment are underpinned by public sector as it is less susceptible to the cyclical changes of the private sector,” he adds.

The Education & Training sector has also seen growth, with job ads up 12.1% on the same time last year.

“There’s a lot of investment around Education & Training,” Broderick says. “It’s one of the big export sectors for Australia so it’s growing.”

Regions faring better than most metro areas for job ad growth

Looking across the country, capital cities except Perth have seen a decline in job ad volumes, while many outer suburbs and regional areas have bucked this trend and shown an increase.

“It is interesting to see that the regional areas are generally faring better during the current economic slowdown,” Banks says. “Victoria’s regional unemployment in particular is at an all-time low, which has been helped by previous state government decisions to locate a number of government agency roles into regional areas. Examples of this include ‘WorkSafe’ agency who has moved to Geelong and Vic Roads who have opened its regional roads bureau in Ballarat.” 

Broderick adds a policy push around more evenly distributing job opportunities is supporting job ad growth in some regional areas in other parts of the nation as well.