Australia is reeling under a skill shortage. Many jobs are going unfilled as Australian employers struggle to find workers with specialized skills.
Deloitte recently released a report titled “The path to prosperity: Why the future of work is human”. The report is a part of their Building the lucky country series. As per the report, the skills deficit in Australia is expected to reach 29 million by 2030.
243,200 jobs lay vacant in May 2019 as per the Australia Bureau of Statistics. This indicated an increase of 0.3% as compared to February 2019.
The Dept. of Employment, Skills, Small & Family Business does regular research to identify the skill shortages in Australia. The Dept. releases the skill shortage occupation list at the national, state and regional levels.
The latest report released in the latter half of 2018 identifies the following occupations as facing a skill shortage:
- Automotive trades: Occupations like motor mechanics, electricians, vehicle painters are facing a huge skill shortage in Australia
- Engineering: There is a dearth of civil, mechanical and electrical engineers in Australia
- Engineering trades: Occupations like machinists, aircraft maintenance engineers, metal fitters etc. are struggling with a skill shortage
- Food trades: Occupations like bakers, chefs, pastry cooks, butchers etc. are struggling with skill shortage
- Health professionals– Occupations like speech therapists, optometrists, Sonographers etc. are facing a skill shortage
Based on the skill shortages in different occupations, the Australian Govt. releases the Skilled Occupation List. The Dept. of Home Affairs regularly updates the list to cater to the demand for various occupations.
There are three categories of the Skilled Occupation List:
- Medium and long-term skill shortage list (MLTSSL)
- Short-term skill shortage list (STSSL)
- Regional occupation list (ROL)
However, there is a limit to the number of invitations that can be issued for each occupation called the occupation ceiling.
The occupation ceiling gives you a good idea of which occupations are in demand and which are not. For example, in 2019-20, the occupation ceiling for nurses is 17,000. This shows that there is a huge demand for this occupation in Australia.
Below are the occupations with the highest occupation ceiling for 2019-20:
|Name of Occupation||Occupation ceiling|
|Software and Applications Programmers*||8,748|
|Carpenters and Joiners||8,536|
|Secondary School Teachers||8,052|
|Metal Fitters and Machinists||7,007|
|Sports Coaches, Instructors and Officials||4,071|
|Structural Steel and Welding Trades Workers||3,983|
|Civil Engineering Professionals||3,772|
|General Practitioners and Resident Medical officers||3,550|
|University Lecturers and Tutors||3,407|
As per the Deloitte report, Australia will struggle with a skill shortage in critical occupations. As per the report author David Rumbens, the skill shortages will differ by industry but will be felt throughout the Australian economy. Construction, education, health, professional services and govt. services are five industries that may face a skill shortage of more than 2 million in the future.
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