Australian Skills Classification

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    The Australian Skills Classification (ASC) was developed to provide a common language of skills to increase understanding and recognition of skills across occupations, sectors, and contexts. Consultation with JSA’s Consultative Forum and with some Jobs and Skills Councils has identified limitations and weaknesses of the ASC including the need for stronger stakeholder input.

    The ASC will be retained on the JSA website while work commences on the development of a new national skills taxonomy. As outlined in the JSA annual report “Towards a National Jobs and Skills Roadmap”, the work on a National Skills Taxonomy will start from first principles with stakeholders to gain a joint understanding across industry and government of the purpose of a national skills taxonomy, its role in a more joined-up tertiary education sector and principles that should underpin its design.

    To support existing users while the new project develops, a final update to the ASC was published in December 2023. No further updates to the ASC are planned while consideration of the development of a national skills taxonomy is underway.

    JSA will provide more information on the National Skills Taxonomy project in the coming months. To be part of early discussions please contact skillsclassification@jobsandskills.gov.au.

    Key concepts

    Core competencies

    Core competencies are common to all jobs. They describe a set of non-specialist skills gained through schooling and life experience which provide a base to further develop skills and specialities. Currently there are different popular terms for core competencies including employability, foundation and core skills. Our Classification identifies 10 core competencies common to every occupation in Australia.

    Core competency values

    The 10 core competencies are required in every occupation across the whole labour market but different occupations require different levels of proficiency in the core competencies. The Classification uses a 10-point scale to describe the required proficiency for each core competency for each occupation and each value has a corresponding description to help explain what this numerical value means in practice. These definitions are general and not specific to occupations.

    Specialist tasks

    Specialist tasks describe day-to-day work within an occupation. While specialist tasks can be transferable across occupations and sectors unlike core competencies they are not universal. Specialist tasks are useful for differentiating occupations.

    The Classification can show where another occupation utilises the same specialist task however this should not be taken as a measure of overall similarity or direct transferability between those roles. For further information about similarity between occupations please explore the Skills Transitions dataset.

    Technology tools

    Technology tools are technology such as hardware and software used within an occupation. Understanding the technology used within an occupation can help us to gain a more fulsome understanding of the skills required to undertake a job beyond day-to-day tasks.

    The Classification describes software, hardware and equipment types or categories used within occupations rather than specific packages or products.

    Common technology tools such as search engines and email are featured across most occupations. The remaining technology tools are highly specialised and occupation-specific such as computer-aided design and carbon monoxide analysing equipment.

    Skills clusters

    Skills clusters show clusters of similar specialist tasks. These tasks are broadly transferable – if you can do one task in the cluster you can likely do the others.

    Skills clusters illustrate a new way of looking at the labour market at a deeper level than occupational classifications or qualifications. This view shows how skills are related and connected to one another without consideration of the occupations they are connected to. By doing so it provides a new way to explore skills transferability.

    While these tasks are broadly transferable this should not be taken as a measure of overall similarity or direct transferability between occupations that utilise these skills. Skills clusters do not take into account qualifications, registration or licencing required to undertake certain tasks.

    Downloads

    Australian Skills Classification 3.0 Release Report

    Australian Skills Classification 3.0 Release Report.docx321280

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    Australian Skills Classification Methodology.docx

    Australian Skills Classification Methodology.docx692216

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    Australian Skills Classification - December 2023

    Australian Skills Classification - December 2023.xlsx3558713

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    Occupation Similarity Top 10 - December 2023

    Occupation Similarity Top 10 - December 2023.xlsx723793

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    Feedback

    We are committed to continuous improvement based on stakeholder feedback. If you would like to contact Jobs and Skills Australia directly about the Australian Skills Classification or have additional questions about the methodology, licensing or usage please email skillsclassification@jobsandskills.gov.au.