The Internet Vacancy Index’s December report provides a summary of the year in review, focussing on three major topics – the strong growth of occupations in the Professional category in regional areas compared to capital cities; consistent demand in the retail sector for managers; and a softening of employment in entry-level positions which tend to be filled by younger workers.
Over the five years to December 2023, online job vacancies in capital cities increased by 24.3% compared with a staggering 93.6% in regional Australia.
Jobs and Skills Australia analysis indicates this was caused by an increase in vacancies in the healthcare sector, with higher demand for registered nurses, doctors, teachers, audiologists and speech pathologists in regional areas than in capital cities. At the same time, declines were noted for ICT and corporate roles in capital cities.
Managers in demand in retail sector
The demand for retail managers was higher than for other jobs in the retail trade industry, being sales assistants, checkout operators and cashiers, shelf fillers, storepersons and pharmacy sales assistants.
This growth was notably stronger in regional Australia, with jobs advertisements increasing 131% in the regions over the five years to December 2023, compared with 36% in capital cities.
The regional skills shortage for this occupation was one of many identified in Jobs and Skills Australia’s 2023 Skills Priority List.
Entry-level jobs start to soften
The robust growth of youth employment seen in peak demand periods of 2022 has eased considerably throughout 2023, as seen in fewer entry-level roles which are often filled by young people.
Over the year to December, online job advertisements decreased for entry-level roles such as checkout operators and office cashiers (down 50.5% or 200), kitchenhands (down 46% or 1,200), cafe workers (down 38% or 230) and sales assistants (down 16% or 1,900 job ads).
While demand remains for entry-level roles, employment data is showing the strength of labour market activity for young people has clearly softened.
Download the Internet Vacancy Index December report for more details.