Australian Jobs - 2019 Statistics

In the third part of our four part series on Australian job statistics we look at the top employment occupations in the country. Occupational groups are interesting to examine because they can provide details and differences between work types, including the qualifications required, and anticipated future growth or decline related to certain work.   

3. Jobs By Occupation (3 of 4 in the Series)

The figures below show the top employing occupations in Australia as of Dec 2018.


  • From 2013 - 2018 over one third (roughly 39%) of all new jobs in Australia have been in ‘professional’ This equates to now just over 3 million Australians working in ‘professional’ occupations.
  • Over 75% of people in these ‘professional’ roles have a bachelor’s degree or higher.

Technicians and Trade Workers

  • The second highest occupation group is ‘technicians and trade workers’ with just under 2 million Australian workers. This occupational group consists of:
    • electricians
    • carpenters and joiners
    • motor mechanics
    • metal fitters and machinists
    • chefs (and more)
  • 60% of these workers have a Certificate III or higher VET qualification.

No Post-School Qualifications

  • The greatest drop in employment figures over the last 5 years has been for ‘secretaries’ (down by 22,000 jobs). This occupation has a notably high proportion of workers without post-school qualifications.
  • Young people (15-24 y/o) predominately work in jobs not requiring any post school qualifications, such as sales assistants, checkout operators, waiters, in retail and hospitality businesses.

In summary, the trend in Australia over the past 5 years has been towards work in areas requiring post-school qualifications. Young people commonly don’t work in these areas, however, it pays to study towards a professional or trade occupation in the future. It is notable that the largest diminishing sector in Australian work is the work that does not require any post-school qualifications.

To have a look at all of the government data including the 330 occupations, covering the whole Australian labour market, have a look at

Download This Resource