Keeping up-to-date with Australia’s labour market during the Coronavirus pandemic

Person reading an online article on a laptop about COVID-19 and Australia’s labour market

The COVID-19 pandemic has led to a demand in jobs in the areas of health, pharmacy and supermarket retail and logistics

This story was first published on Tuesday 14 April 2020. If you wish to use this content, please contact to confirm that the information is still current.

While health measures in place across Australia have so far helped slow the spread of COVID-19 the impact of the pandemic on the Australia labour market is ever changing.

To assist job seekers, workers, industry and the community get a grasp of what’s happening, the Department of Education, Skills and Employment regularly publishes new content on the Labour Market Information Portal website (LMIP). LMIP provides information, research and analysis about Australia’s employment landscape.

A new interactive dashboard showing key labour market indicators is now available on the portal. It contains data about national, state, territory and regional labour markets based on the Australian Bureau of Statistics Labour Force Survey. This information will allow users to explore emerging employment trends and monitor changes as the pandemic continues.

The portal’s Special Topics Report section reveals there is demand for workers in roles that support Australia’s supermarkets, food supply chains, and the health, aged and disabled care sectors. For example, employers are looking for checkout operators, packers, shelf stackers, truck drivers, pharmacy assistants, hospital orderlies, carers, nursing support workers and contact centre operators.

While some job seekers may not have any direct experience in these jobs, they may be selling themselves short. The department’s Skills Match tool on the Job Outlook website provides suggestions to job seekers about how skills from their previous employment may be transferable to new opportunities. For example, using Skills Match, some job seekers found their experience in the accommodation and food services industry – such as waiters, kitchenhands, bar attendants, baristas, chefs, sales assistants – may help them transition into the jobs in demand.

The Employers’ Recruitment Insights page on the portal has some tips and tricks to help job seekers standout from others when applying for a job. In light of the pandemic, employers are looking for job seekers with a proactive attitude, are flexible and resilient, and can work in areas they may not necessarily have envisaged in the past. Other tips remain true – it is important for CVs to be updated and proof-read as in many cases, this is the first time an employer learns about a job seeker. Employers recommend job seekers practice interview techniques to improve their confidence and responses at actual interviews.

The portal also features information comparing the relative physical proximity and exposure to diseases that different types of occupations have. The data reinforces the importance of social distancing in the workplace to manage the spread of COVID-19, as the incidence of physical proximity to others is higher for more occupations than the relative exposure to disease and infection.

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Correct at time of publication.