In a significant first for Australia’s post-COVID job market recovery, November job listings have reported a one percent year-on-year increase from 2019 figures.

According to SEEK’s latest employment report, the positive number showed a return to pre-COVID job ad figures and were a result of easing restrictions and the reopening of businesses and industries.

Despite an increase in job seekers, however, November reported a drop in application volumes, most notably in trades and services, manufacturing, transport and logistics, hospitality and tourism, and retail.

SEEK ANZ’s Managing Director, Kendra Banks said this was due to job seekers being “more selective” in choosing what roles they’re applying for.

“While the number of job seekers viewing ads is the same as this time last year, the number who go on to apply is 15 percent lower year-on-year,” she said.

“This behavior is in contrast with what we saw throughout 2020, where applications per ad were typically higher than usual. So, it is increasingly becoming more of a job seekers’ market, particularly in Western Australia and Queensland.”Although job listings are rising on the whole, not all industries are getting the same amount of attention. Picture: iStock.

Although job listings are rising on the whole, not all industries are getting the same amount of attention. Picture: iStock.Source:istock

‘SIGNIFICANT TURNAROUND’ FOR LOCKDOWN STATE

Across Australia, most states and territories reported a month-on-month increase in job ad figures. While Western Australia was the exception, Ms Banks said this was due to the “seasonal winding down of the year”.

Victoria also achieved a “significant turnaround” after their job ads were severely affected during their second lockdown. While the state is still behind their year-on-year figures, they reported a 20.2 per cent increase in job ads, marking its third consecutive month of double-digit growth.

“After three consecutive months of double-digit growth, including 17.3 per cent in September, 20.7 per cent in October, and now 20.2 per cent in November, Victoria has moved beyond ACT and New South Wales in year-on-year job ad growth,” she said.

“This marks a significant turnaround for the state, which was severely impacted during this year’s COVID restrictions and lockdown.”

Victorian Christmas shoppers have been out in full-force since social-distancing restrictions were eased. Picture: Daniel Pockett/Getty Images.

Victorian Christmas shoppers have been out in full-force since social-distancing restrictions were eased. Picture: Daniel Pockett/Getty Images.Source:Getty Images

South Australia’s three-day ‘circuit breaker’ lockdown from November 19 to 21 also briefly impacted job ads with an immediate 26 per cent drop in the corresponding week. The state, however, still finished the month with a 2.5 per cent month-on-month growth.

INDUSTRIES MOST IN DEMAND

In other good news for job seekers, all industries reported an increase in job ads across the month, with hiring continuing despite a normal seasonal drop-off.

Listings in hospitality and tourism, trades and services and healthcare and medical industries saw the biggest growth, with these roles proving the most in-demand:

Hospitality and tourism: Chefs, cooks, waiting for staff, bar and beverage staff, management, kitchen and sandwich hands, housekeeping and front office and guest services.

Trades and services: Roles in automotive trades, labourers, electricians, hair and beauty services, welders and boilermakers, technicians, carpentry and cabinet making, gardening and landscaping.

Healthcare and medical: Roles for physiotherapists, occupational therapists and rehabilitation, nurses in aged care and general medical, psychology, counselling and social work, dental and medical administration.

Nursing roles are consistently one of the most in-demand jobs. Picture: iStock.

Nursing roles are consistently one of the most in-demand jobs. Picture: iStock.Source:istock

The latest unemployment data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics also revealed good news for Australia’s economic recovery. Unemployment has dropped from 7 per cent to 6.8 per cent after 90,000 people found work in November.

The new figures expected unemployment to drop to 6.25 per cent in 2021-22 and fall to 5.25 per cent by 2023-24. For reference, in February of this year, Australia’s unemployment rate sat at a pre-pandemic level of 5.1 per cent.

Speaking to the positive growth, Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said Australia was “outperforming all advanced economies” and said he expected the unemployment rate to recover to pre-COVID19 levels in “around four years”.

“We have come a long way,” he said.

“This improved outlook is off the back of unprecedented levels of support.”

This article was created in partnership with SEEK