In April 2015, the Australian Government released a report on Workplace Gender Equality evidencing that women comprise 46.0% of all employees in Australia where 24.8% are full-time employees and 21.2% are working part-time. Statistics also show that the Mining and Construction industries have the lowest working levels of females in all of Australia. Graph 1 shows the workforce participation by gender per industry.
As you will observe, women in the mining and construction industries only comprise of 16.1% and 11.4% of the total workforce respectively. Whilst Health Care and Education hold the highest number of women with 78.1% and 69.0%.
So why do we need women in the trades?
We need women in trades, to break down outdated traditions and provide benefits to industries such as:
- Widening economic opportunities in Australia
- Challenging stereotyping about gender perceptions
- Creating healthy and diverse working environments
- Decreasing labour market shortages, through increasing labour supply
- Addressing our ageing population
In addition to the abovementioned benefits, the maturity of the trade industries will open more opportunities for women to work. Working within trades could have the following benefits for women on a personal level:
- Earn commensurate income for the family
- Increased employment opportunities; and
- Greater work-life balance
Nowadays, more training institutions and private companies are encouraging women to join the trades, and as a result are customising their training programs and actively creating workplace cultures that are more gender-sensitive. Expanding career options for women in Australia would have a direct correlation to the increase of the economic growth for our country.
In Western Australia scholarships have been released by the Government of Western Australia. The scholarship program is a joint venture of the Department of Training and Workforce Development, the Department of Local Government and Communities and the Construction Training Fund.
You can visit http://www.dtwd.wa.gov.au/dtwcorporateinfo/policiesandguidelines for more details on terms of eligibility and the application process.
We believe through encouraging, female engagement within the trades that it would be a win-win scenario for all parties involved (women, business, industries, and Australia). Are you interested in entering into a career within a trade or perhaps you would like to upskill? Click here to view our courses.