Online job advertisements continue to bounce back

Looking for a job? The COVID-19 impact on the Australian labour market has been daunting and dispiriting, but as we round out the year, online job vacancies are increasing. 

The National Skills Commission’s monthly vacancy report shows that new job advertisements have increased for six consecutive months. In October, recruitment activity increased by 9,100 or 6.2% nationally to now stand at 155,000 job advertisements. 

The Vacancy Report, published monthly by the NSC, summarises the latest trends in the Internet Vacancy Index (IVI) from three job boards – SEEK, CareerOne and Australian JobSearch – and explores the labour market at a detailed occupational and regional level. 

Overall, job advertisements have now fallen by just 2.3% over the year to October 2020. However, during October job advertisements increased across all eight broad occupational groups, with the strongest gains recorded for Sales Workers (up by 11.6% or 1,300 job advertisements), Labourers (up by 10.7% or 1,100 job advertisements) and Community and Personal Service Workers (up by 9.9% or 1,400 job advertisements).

These increases highlight the ongoing recovery in recruitment activity since the April 2020 series low point, with job advertisements having more than doubled since that time (up by 83,300 job advertisements). 

Additionally, job advertisements for Labourers, Machinery Operators and Drivers, Community and Personal Service Workers and Technicians and Trades Workers now exceed pre-COVID-19 levels.

This increased recruitment activity is most pronounced in Western Australia, South Australia, the Northern Territory, Queensland and Tasmania, which are now recording above pre-COVID-19 levels. 

Western Australia recorded the strongest increase (up by 24.9% or 3,800 job advertisements), followed by Tasmania (17.8% or 290 job advertisements), the Northern Territory (17.5% or 270 job advertisements), South Australia (16.8% or 1,200 job advertisements) and Queensland (9.9% or 2,900 job advertisements).