The last two years have been challenging for Victorians. Covid-19 and the global pandemic has had an enormous impact on people – socially, academically, financially and emotionally.
Opportunities for job seekers have decreased as public health restrictions have necessitated lockdowns and resulted in industries such as hospitality, events, entertainment and live music being shut down for extended periods. Among the hardest hit are young people under 25, indigenous Australians, women over 45, people with disabilities, migrants and war veterans.
During Box Hill Institute’s recent Open Month, Program Coordinator of the Skills and Jobs Centre, Ms Melinda Davis, gave an insightful online presentation via webinar about the industries that are predicted grow substantially over the next five to 10 years, which projects underpin that growth, and what the future job trends are for careers post-Covid.
We spoke with Melinda about her thoughts regarding what the future holds and which sectors will boom.
In the 12 months from June 2020 to June 2021, the Labour Market Portal, an Australian Government resource, shows that the annual job growth in Victoria was 318.5 per cent – that’s the highest in Australia. This is partly due to the massive government investment in funding the economic recovery since the first lockdown in Melbourne. “There are millions upon millions of dollars being invested into the growth of the economy,” said Melinda.
Her research – via government information websites, job websites and available industry information and statistics – shows that, on average, there are more jobs now than there were 12 months ago.
Having the knowledge about growth industries, means that you are able to make an informed choice about the career paths you pursue. If you’re making a decision to commit to study, you want to make sure that it is going to benefit you when you have finished the course. This list of courses is reflective of those areas where there is demand.
The fastest growing area is the health care and community services sector, with 250 per cent growth anticipated over the next five years. What this means is that there are lots more jobs projected. One reason for this is the funding of the NDIS – the National Disability Insurance Scheme – which allocates funds directly to people with disabilities who are eligible for this scheme. This then allows people with disabilities in the NDIS to choose which service providers to spend their funds with and what to spend their funds on – it gives them more choice and control over their allocated NDIS funds, providers, services and their lives.
It also has the effect of increasing work options throughout the disability sector. If you’re an administrative person who likes organising things, you could be an NDIS case worker. If you’re more interested in interpersonal relationships, direct personal care or physical care roles may appeal to you – so the increased volume of work with services providers’ means there will be lot more jobs available in this sector. There are also community service roles which involve taking clients to the football, the movies, or helping people with their socialisation is prioritised.
Victoria also has an ageing population, with a higher percentage of people over 60 needing support from our healthcare system and the aged care sector. A hospital is more than doctors; there will be an increased need for administrative staff, OHS and fire safety officers, social workers, cleaning and kitchen staff in these environments.
Tourism dollars are being spent locally and this is generating more jobs. There’s a big market for hospitality workers – front of house staff, wait staff, chef apprenticeships, and kitchen hands. As Melbourne and Victoria emerge out of lockdown, tourism and hospitality will become more and more important for people again.
Research shows a shortage of accountants in Victoria. The pandemic has also highlighted the importance Biosecurity for Australia and Laboratory Science and Lab Tech Services.
A cyber-attack is one of the biggest threats of terrorism for Australia and we need more people who are able to detect and respond to malicious software.
The NDIS has increased funding for student support workers. This industry is highly regulated, so you must have qualifications to work in this area.
The “Big Build Project” in Victoria is a really positive sign that Victoria is recovering well. There’s a huge amount of state government funding for this 10 year plan for civil construction projects – from housing to roads and rail – and job seekers are able to apply directly for positions on The Big Build website.
More housing estates are being created which means there is a need for more workers “on the tools”. There will be trade specific apprenticeships, roles for workers all along the supply chain, and project managers needed, among other roles.
Along with practical skills, employers are also looking for soft skills when they’re screening candidates and looking for employees. Soft skills like communication, team work, problem solving, resilience and the ability to work effectively online (remotely), have been identified as an important area of growth and are woven through the curriculum of all of our courses at Box Hill Institute to best prepare our students for the world of work today and for the future..
The pandemic has meant that we’ve all had to embrace the emergence of technology and new technology more. Technology is now enhancing people’s jobs and means that the traditional skills for particular jobs are changing.
In her presentation, Melinda used the example of a bricklayer. Traditionally, bricklaying is heavy, repetitive, labour intensive work. But now that robots are actually laying the bricks, the job is becoming less labour intensive. The important skill set now belongs to the person behind the iPad who is programming the robot’s instructions.
Drones can very quickly capture data that would take a human many days to record. A drone can also drop parcels from Amazon to your door. They are useful for forestation surveys and during bush fires for a birds eye view of where fires are, how quickly they are spreading and in which direction.
Surgeons now train using Virtual Reality (VR). NASA trains its engineers to fix aircraft and spacecraft using VR.
Our welding students learn using Augmented Reality (AR). They can practise as much as they need to and it’s environmentally friendly as well.
If you come and train at TAFE, you’ll be introduced to some of these technologies and build on your knowledge and experience of technology. For example, if you study nursing, you’ll get to practice on robotic dummies in a simulated hospital environment.
The Skills and Job Centre is state-funded to provide free, impartial career advice and guidance. We can talk to you about career pathways, apprenticeships and training.
Our staff can also help you with resumes and cover letters, key selection criteria, and anything to do with the job search process including interview practice and interview techniques.
If you’re interested in speaking with one of our advisors at the Skills and Job Centre click here to make an appointment.