Job Demand in Australia

Getting a skilled migration visa for Australia has never been more challenging. The number of visas issued has been reduced, processing times are slower and migrants are facing increasing competition from countries such as India and China.

However, thousands of people do successfully migrate to Australia every year and there are still many places available for people with the right skills. Your dream of starting a new life down under is still very achievable – especially if your experience is needed.

Moving to Australia for work

There has always been an attraction for non-Australian residents looking to work in Australia and a lot of that has to do with the lifestyle, the salary and, the stunning weather. Australia has always had a clear and fair policy on immigration and welcomes migrant workers, so if you are planning a move down under and meet the criteria, you’ll feel more than accepted.

There are thousands of migrant workers who try to apply for a working visa in Australia every year. The best way you can secure employment and a work-based visa, is through the Australian Skilled Migration program. This applies to the occupations listed in the Skilled Occupations List (SOL), which is updated regularly and there are over 200 occupations on the list. This list governs the areas where migrant skilled workers are most sought after in the country, so you can see if your skills are in demand in the land of Oz.

What are Occupation Ceilings?

There is a restriction on the amount of Expression of Interest (EOI) or invites that will be issued by the Australian Government for a particular occupation group. This is what is referred to as the occupation ceilings.

They are there to make sure there’s not just a small number of different occupations making up the biggest percentage of the program for skilled migrant workers. Once the cited limit has been met, there will be no additional invitations for the occupation group in question until the next year.

This means that even the lower ranking occupation groups will be able to offer prospective migrants an invitation to work in the country. There is a wide range of jobs covering every sector and there is really no limit to the types of professions being accepted.

If you have a certain qualification that is not in demand, then with a top up or booster course you could change your skill level and become eligible to apply for one of the jobs on the list.

If you are a primary school teacher in the UK, you may be able to access a Train to Teach course which will provide you with the needed Qualified Teacher Status to teach secondary school children, a high demand occupation.

The Top Occupations In Demand in Australia 2019-2020

Nurses and Medical Staff

There are a lot of different factors that come into play and mean that Australia is a suitable destination for any registered nurse or other medical staff looking for somewhere to move to and work. Due to it being a growing industry coupled with the fact that there are quite a number of nurses and medical employees who will be reaching retirement age soon, there is an increased demand for nurses, giving high occupational ceilings for roles in this sector.

The health care industry overall has had the biggest increase and growth in 5 years, and this is expected to continue through to 2022. The occupations in this industry that are the most in demand are registered nurses, disabled and aged carers, personal care workers, receptionists and nursing support.

Software Programmer and IT

There is currently a growing and critical need within the tech industry for software developers of various abilities, such as those experienced in user experience, mobile and back-end design, front end and full stack developers. In fact, according to a report from last year, 9 of the most advertised jobs out of a list of 15 were for UI/UE designers, software engineers and developers.

Trades and Construction

Given that the construction industry always has a demand, especially for technicians and trade workers such as electricians, carpenters, joiners and plumbers, it’s not surprising that these rank so highly on the most in demand list of professions. There has also been a demand for non-skilled labourers too. So, if you are experienced in this kind of work, you will have an easier time getting work.


Although in the past there was a huge demand for migrant primary school teachers in Australia, that has changed in recent years. There are still options for migrants looking to work in teaching though, particularly in secondary schools in more regional parts of the country. That is why it still ranks so highly in the occupational ceilings list. It is even the case that many qualified teachers from Australia need to go out to the regional parts of the country for their first employer. Within this group, the least in demand is undoubtedly inner city female primary school teachers.

White Collar Management/Professionals

Just as is the case with software developers, there is a growing demand for various white-collar management and professional positions. Including the likes of those involved in marketing, advertising and accounting. Therefore, if you have experience and qualifications in these kinds of positions, you are likely to find it easier landing a job. Migration has always favoured skilled workers in Australia, so if you have a management or professional role or skill involved in this area, you are in good standing for employment.

Automotive and Engineering Trades Workers

Motor mechanics are in demand all across Australia and if you are in a specialist area such as automotive electrician, automatic transmission mechanic, automotive air-conditioning mechanic or brake mechanic, even better. This category also includes other trades such as metal machinists, sheet metal workers, panel beaters, welders, fitters and metal fabricators, although demand for particular specialisations varies across different Australian states.


Whilst, like many Western countries, Australia has a demand for temporary farm labourers to help with mundane tasks such as crop picking, there are also many opportunities for more highly skilled agricultural workers. No matter whether you’re a dairy or mixed crop farmer you’ll find farming on an unimaginable scale in Australia with good salaries to match.


Although it may not feature as highly in the list of the industry and professions with the most demand for migrant workers, there is still huge demand for skilled and qualified engineers of all kinds. This includes mechanical, industrial, electronics, transport and electrical engineers.

Before you submit your Expression of Interest form it is very important that you do your research, learn about your options, and seek advice from experts. Don’t despair if your role is not on the most wanted list or if you don’t receive an invitation. There is still another route to getting a visa – being sponsored by an employer. The Employer Nomination Scheme visa lets skilled workers, who are nominated by their employer, live and work in Australia permanently.

Ron Ford

Ron Ford immigrated with his family to Australia in 2005 to work as a social worker. Following their difficult immigration process, he slowly turned to blogging and creating content about immigration: "…As a family of 5, we struggled to make ends meet. I was working around the clock and Clarissa was working in housekeeping any time she could spare. The move to Australia completely changed our lives, but it cost us a lot of money, time, and tears. Ever since I've wanted to help others on their journeys the way I wished someone had helped us".

More Posts