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Finding Employment

Australia - Finding Employment

Finding Employment in Australia

Western Australia (WA) has the lowest employment rate in Australia. However, Australia experienced a 7.8 percent increase in employment in 2015. New South Wales and Victoria were the largest employing states. In addition, South Australia, Tasmania, and the Australian Capital Territory recorded a substantial growth in employment. Western Australia, Tasmania, and Northern territory are a “hirer’s market” for employers and recruiters. These regions experience a higher than average number of job applicants for each advertised job, which creates more competition for job seekers but provides hirers with a larger pool of candidates.

The healthcare and medical industry continues to grow strong nationally, with a 13 percent increase in employment annually. However, Western Australia went against the grain with a lower employment rate than the previous year (2014). Most jobs in the healthcare industry were taken up by paramedics. Some of the most marketable professions in the healthcare sector in Australia include speech therapy, natural therapies, alternative medicine and nursing. Banking, sales, financial services, and superannuation sectors recorded the lowest employment rates in Australia.


When the Australia Bureau of Statistics (ABS) announced that the economy added 126,000 new jobs in 2015, some people were skeptical. However, the Australian job market has seen an improvement. Nonetheless, job losses should be expected across both resource and construction sectors. How this affects unemployment will be determined by how fast the construction cycle declines.

Many job analysts predict a 0.2% rise in unemployment by the end of 2016. Investment levels across the service sector are a determinant of unemployment to help gauge whether it creates enough work to compensate for the jobs lost in the resource sector. This means that the job market will be split down geographic lines. States depending on the resource sector may see a rise in unemployment while states on the East Coast, which are mostly service driven, may experience a dip in employment.

How to apply for a job

Australia welcomes migrants with valuable skills and qualifications. However, expats looking for jobs in Australia should understand that they might not get the dream jobs they want right away. There are several factors to consider when applying for a job in Australia.

• Visit Australian job websites to browse available job opportunities in your field before deciding to emigrate.
• Check your eligibility for the job.
• Apply for a visa because prospective employers will always ask about your immigration status and whether you have a visa.
• Apply for advertised vacancies overseas only 1-12 weeks before a possible start date or visit to Australia.
• Send a CV and letter of application to all potential employers and recruitment agencies in the region you intend to settle to inform potential employers of your availability.
• For location details, visit www.yellowpages.com.au
• Your CV should be written in Australian style with a short and clear cover letter. If possible, provide an Australian postal address in your CV.
• Inform the employer that you are available for Skype, webcam or telephone interviews.
• Once called for an interview, create good rapport with your interviewers as well as trying to make a positive professional impression.
• Be willing to fit into the local ways of doing things.

Some of the things you should not do during the application and interview include the following.

• Do not visit Australia for interviews or apply for job vacancies more than 12 weeks away from a possible start date, as the employer may not be interested.
• On average, it takes local Australian residents 1-8 weeks or even longer to find a new job. So do not expect to get one in the first week.
• Do not expect a job that is on the same level or higher than the one you had because if you lack Australian local knowledge, you may need to step back to advance yourself.
• When it comes to salary, look at your net income and not the gross amount because the cost of living and income tax rates in Australia are lower than some western developed nations.
• You should understand that employment laws and contract terms might be different in Australia. Do not over-negotiate the contract with your first employer.

Major recruitment agencies and job sites

This is Australia’s number one job site with a wide range of jobs to choose from. Through SEEK you can search for jobs in all territories in Australia. Their motto is SEEK and you shall find. The jobs on this site are available in major cities throughout Australia.
Customer service: 1300 658 700
Email: jobmail- jobmail@s.seek.com.au

My Career
This jobsite was launched in 1999 and is a subsidiary of the Fairfax Family Group.

Common types of temporary work for expats

Visitoz scheme is a work placement designed for working holiday visa holders. Expats accepted into this program are guaranteed jobs and training during their stay in Australia. In addition, expats can look for jobs in department and chain stores. These types of business enterprises have employed many expats in Australia.

There is stiff competition for jobs from students during university holidays. Therefore, consider applying for a job before the holidays. Hiring is often done a few months before the holidays.

In the agricultural and rural hospitality industries, offered jobs are mainly outdoors although there are availabilities in the education, healthcare, and maintenance sectors. Fruit and vegetable picking is a common part-time job for many expats in Australia, and in some parts of the country these jobs run throughout the year

Government employment service
This is a government employment site that provides a vast array of jobs in the public sector.
Phone: 61(0)26 202 3559 (Between 9am and 5pm ACT local time. Mon-Fri excluding ACT national public holidays)

This is another government website that provides expats with available job opportunities in Australia. It is Australia’s number one free online jobsite and provides recruiting services to small companies looking for employees. Government jobs are also advertised on this site.

Penalties for working illegally in Australia

The Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIBP) encourages Australian employers to ensure that their staff members have the right to work in Australia.

• It is a criminal offence to employ or refer an individual to work illegally in Australia.
• Employers having people working for them illegally risk criminal prosecution and fines of up to $13,200 and 2 years’ imprisonment.
• Employers could be fined up to AUD $66,000 for each employee illegally hired to work in Australia.
• The Visa Entitlement for Employers Verification Online (VEVO) allows recruiters and employers to check the visa status of job candidates without asking for their passports.

Read more about this country

Expat Health Insurance Partners

Bupa Global

At Bupa we have been helping individuals and families live longer, healthier, happier lives for over 60 years. We are trusted by expats in 190 different countries and have links with healthcare organisations throughout the world. So whether you're moving abroad for a change of career or a change of scene, with our international private health insurance you will always be in safe hands.


Cigna has worked in international health insurance for more than 30 years. Today, Cigna has over 71 million customer relationships around the world. Looking after them is an international workforce of 31,000 people, plus a network of over 1 million hospitals, physicians, clinics and health and wellness specialists worldwide, meaning you have easy access to treatment.