The happiest careers in Australia

Are you someone who equates happiness with your 9-to-5? Or does the thought of heading into work on a Monday morning turn you into a real-life sad face emoji?

We spend most of our lives at work so it goes without saying that feeling happy on the job can greatly impact productivity, career satisfaction and general wellbeing.

So what roles are rating the highest on the happiness spectrum? According to research conducted by SEEK in 2015, those in senior management positions are the happiest with 67% of workers reporting high levels of satisfaction.

It seems being your own boss also pays off in the happiness stakes, with 50% of self-employed workers saying they are happy at work. On top of increased levels of freedom, the satisfaction that comes from choosing your own career path seems to give those who fall into this category plenty of reasons to smile.

Did you know that your location might also be impacting your happiness on the job? If you live in Tasmania you’ll be pleased to hear that the Apple Isle is the place where workers are most content with 49% of workers classifying themselves as happy or satisfied. Coming in second is Western Australia at 47%, followed by Queensland at 46%.

Top 4 happiest industries

If you’re looking for the industries where workers are the happiest, the latest figures from SEEK show that the most enjoyable jobs can be found in:

      1. Consulting & Strategy - 53% of workers classify themselves as happy or satisfied
      2. Banking & Financial Services - 52% of workers classify themselves as happy or satisfied
      3. Education & Training - 51% of workers classify themselves as happy or satisfied
      4. Trades & Services - 49% of workers classify themselves as happy or satisfied

Since we spend so much time at work it’s certainly worthwhile to make sure that what you do every day is contributing to your overall happiness. If an enjoyable job has seemed like a foreign concept for a while, could it be time to seriously think about a shift in careers?

Here are some examples of roles within these happy industries and courses to consider to help you find your brand new happy (work)place:

Consulting & strategy - Happiest careers

Consulting & Strategy

  • Management & Change Consultant
  • Environment & Sustainability Consultant
  • Policy Analyst
  • Business Analyst

Qualifications: Get started as a Business Analyst with an Agile Certified Practitioner course or project management course that suits your learning style best.

Banking & financial services - Happiest careers

Banking & Financial Services

  • Credit and Lending Officer
  • Financial Planner
  • Mortgage Broker
  • Commercial Analyst

Qualifications: Find out more about relevant finance courses including the Bachelor of Business With a Major in Accounting, Diploma of Accounting (FNS50215), and Certificate in Accounts Administration (FNS30315).

Education & training - Happiest careers

Education & Training

  • Primary Teacher
  • Kindergarten Teacher
  • Early Childhood Teacher
  • Teacher Aide

Qualifications: Find an education course to suit your career goals, including primary school teaching or working in child care.

Trades & services - Happiest careers

Trades & Services

  • Builder
  • Beauty Therapist
  • Retail Store Manager
  • Plumber
  • Butcher

Qualifications: The trades and services industry can cover a wide variety of entry-level roles from bricklaying to babysitting. However, there are some roles that will require a particular level of study to meet industry regulations or help you stand out from the crowd. Check out the courses available in beauty, retail and building and construction and see how you can move from a qualification to a career.

Source: Independent research conducted by Survey Sampling International (SSI) on behalf of SEEK in March 2015. Published March 2016.

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