The Australian engineering labour market update – December 2015


At the end of each month, the Department of Employment releases a Vacancy Report outlining the changes of the Internet Vacancy Index (IVI) for around 350 occupations[1]. Every month, we’ll analyse this report and outline the major changes to the engineering labour market in Australia. Movements in vacancies provide broad indications about the direction in which labour market changes are heading.

Engineering is a complex profession requiring intensive and extensive education and training over a long period, life-time professional development, numerous areas of specialisation and specialisation is often dependent on engineering practice. These characteristics mean that engineering is not governed by a single labour market for homogeneous “engineering” skills but numerous labour markets conditioned by specific engineering skills and experience levels.

Engineering Vacancies December 2015 Overview

In December, the Australian general and professional labour market recorded a rise, but not as high as in previous months as demonstrated in Figure 1. Engineering vacancies for the first time in 12 months recorded a decrease in vacancies with a number of 2,421 (in trend terms). This is still above the recorded number in the previous year of December 2014 with 2,252 job vacancies.

Figure 1. Monthly Changes in Engineering Vacancies, General Vacancies, and Professional Vacancies Over the Past 12 Months.

Dec 2015 - Engineering Labour Market

Engineering Vacancies December 2015 State Overview

Figure 2 demonstrates the monthly changes in vacancies for engineers in the states and territories over the past three months. New South Wales, Victoria and South Australia were the only states to record a positive improvement in December in engineering vacancies whilst Queensland and the Australian Capital Territory recorded a fall in numbers from the previous positive growth.

Figure 2. Monthly Changes in Engineering Vacancies by State in the Past 3 Months.

Dec 2015 - Engineering Labour Market State

Stay tuned for the January report, which will be published in early March.

[1] The IVI is based on a count of online job advertisements newly lodged on SEEK, CareerOne and Australian JobSearch during the month. As such, the IVI does not reflect the total number of job advertisements in the labour market as it does not include jobs advertised through other online job boards, employer websites, word of mouth, in newspapers, and advertisements in shop windows.

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