Job Markets Australia 2019-2020

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the advantages of using

The methodology for the online database is constructed on the authoritative statistics produced by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (see Sources in the toolbar for more details). The methodology is consistently applied, sustainable and follows best practice principles for researching, describing and evaluating labour market and income variables in specific occupations. Some free earnings figures, a paper on the Sources page, reviews a number of alternative sources of earnings figures.


What are best practice principles for occupational research?

The fundamental principle is that the primary source of detailed and cross-tabulations statistics for describing and evaluating specific occupations must be the most recent Population Census. This is especially the case in small and medium-sized occupations, but it is also the case – with regard to finer details and bigger cross-tabulations – in large occupations. It is inadvisable to rely on detailed, cross-tabulated occupational statistics from surveys, except for aggregations at a higher group level in the case of small and medium-sized occupations and for aggregated detail within large occupations. Otherwise, even with smoothing of the estimates, high or very relative standard errors make the stated figures unreliable, particularly for workers compensation, for matters before the Courts or likely to end up there, and indeed for any use where decisions or recommendations have significant financial or other implications.


Does that mean that the Job Markets Australia online database uses old statistics?

No, the online database has the most up-to-date, reliable statistics in all of its information fields. Its earnings are always the most current available for the 1,000 ANZSCO occupations. The current job numbers are always the latest available in each published issue. The descriptive and comparative statistics and analysis for those occupations are always reliable because they are counts, not estimates from surveys that are designed to produce reliable statistics only at some high aggregation.


How good are the earnings figures on

For over a decade, the Job Markets Australia earnings have been accepted as a fair and reasonable guide to average weekly full-time earnings by occupation and age. This holds for litigated matters before the Courts, perhaps following a motor vehicle accident, in workers compensation jurisdictions, in other administrative fields (such as child support), and in a wide range of careers guidance and employment placement services. The Job Markets Australia series and the longer-running What Jobs Pay series share the same methodology. They comprise the most comprehensive earnings figures published in Australia.


Are the earnings gross, with or without superannuation? And for how many hours?

The average full-time earnings are gross (pre-tax) figures. They do not include the Superannuation Guarantee Levy. Full-time employment is defined as 35 hours a week or more.


Some earnings figures look too low . . . why is that?

The methodology does understate the average for experienced workers in the top paid occupations. It is very apparent, for example, for Medical Specialists, Judges, Miners, and Barristers. It does lead to minor understatement in other occupations where a reasonable proportion of workers, usually in the over 30s group, have weekly incomes well above $3,000. Where that proportion is not great (that is, more than 15%), the impact remains at the margin and does not seriously reduce the utility of the average earnings in most instances.


Which ANZSCO occupations don’t have any earnings?

Because they have very few or no jobs in Australia, Bungy Jump Masters, Hunting Guides, Mountain or Glacier Guides and Trekking Guides have no earnings figures.


Why are there age-groups in particular occupations without earnings figures?

Where the Census counts few full-time workers in an age-group, it is not possible to generate a reliable average for them, and the age-group/s will show “n.a.”, meaning not available. Age-groups with no workers also show “n.a.”.


Are the actual qualifications statistics by occupation correct? Some of them show labourers and cleaners with bachelor degrees or a higher qualification.

The analysis of qualifications held by age is based on the Census responses. For instance, workers might have qualifications from overseas universities which are not recognised here, or the worker’s English might not allow them to win work in their profession. Similarly, many local graduates unable to find a job that utilizes their university education will accept lesser-skilled work.


What new occupations have been added? Were any removed?

Ten new occupations have been added to the online database: Procurement Managers,  Hydrologists, Exercise Physiologists, Nutritionists, Registered Nurses (Paediatrics), Intellectual Property Lawyers, Archaeologists, Hydrographers, Kennel Hands, and Herbalists (Western). Anatomists or Physiologists was removed, while Inquiry Clerks are now titled Information Officers and Ship Surveyors are now called Marine Surveyors.


Why has the Regional/Local Jobs field changed?

This field no longer provides job figures for an occupation at the State level, because that is done in the Number of Jobs field. Regional job numbers within a State or Territory are provided, as before. For more than three-quarters of the regional entries, there is still the option to select Local level 1 (comprising LGAs, except for Brisbane and the ACT) within a Region, as well as the new option of drilling down to Local level 2 within an LGA or other geographic area. LGA amalgamations have occurred in recent years. To find the Local level you are seeking, you can open and search “Regions and Local Areas List by State and Territory (includes Local Levels 1 and 2)”, the PDF file on the Sources page.