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Unpacking the Skills Gap: Latest Australian Labour Market Update

Latest Australian Labour Market Update

According to the latest quarterly Australian Labour Market Update report from Jobs and Skills Australia, the country’s labour market conditions are robust, with a substantial increase in full-time employment and improvements for long-term unemployed and underemployed individuals. However, there is still a significant economic challenge as there is a present skills gap in many parts of the labour market.

The report found that there has been growth in supply and a slight easing in recruitment difficulty, with an increase in the likelihood of employers filling an advertised role. Interestingly, over the past year, around 36% of total employment growth has been in occupations where university qualifications are the primary pathway, while just over 60% of total employment has been in fields where VET qualifications are the primary pathway.

Although the general employment scenario appears positive, there are still skill shortages in certain areas, particularly in engineering and medical fields, which are more prevalent in regional areas. The top 20 occupations in shortage nationally and for each state and territory are listed in the Australian Labour Market Update report. The occupations in highest demand are, including their internet vacancy index, the following:

  1. Registered Nurses – 8,377
  2. Software and Applications Programmers – 6,269
  3. Aged and Disabled Carers- 4,642
  4. Child Carers – 4,277
  5. Construction Managers – 4,230
  6. Motor Mechanics – 3,924

However, the shortage is attributed to the need for more people with the right technical skills, where more investment in training is needed.

Australian Labour Market Update: How RTOS Can Help Close the Skills Gap

Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) have an important role in addressing the labour market skills gap. To respond to the findings of the Australian Labour Market Update report, RTOs can consider taking the following actions:

  1. Offer training in high demand occupations

    RTOs can develop and offer training courses in occupations in high demand and facing a skills shortage, as identified in the Australian Labour Market Update report. This can help to upskill the workforce and address the shortage.

  2. Partner with employers

    RTOs can work with employers to identify their specific skills needs and develop training programs to address them. This can ensure that the training provided by RTOs is aligned with the needs of the labour market.

  3. Improve course quality

    RTOs can ensure that their courses are of high quality and meet industry standards. This helps ensure that the graduates of RTOs have the skills and knowledge that employers are looking for.

  4. Adopt innovative training methods

    RTOs can adopt innovative training methods, such as online learning and simulation, to provide flexible and effective training options for students.

  5. Stay up to date with industry developments

    RTOs can stay informed about the latest industry and labour market developments to ensure that their training courses remain relevant and up to date.

By taking these actions, RTOs can help to address the skills gap in the Australian labour market and ensure that the workforce is equipped with the skills needed to meet the needs of employers.

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