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The number of job vacancies has increased considerably over the last ten years, particularly in the private sector. In May 2002 there were 74,900 private sector vacancies and 15,400 public sector vacancies, up from the 23,400 private sector vacancies and 8,400 public sector vacancies recorded in May 1992.
A job vacancy is a job available for immediate filling and for which recruitment action has taken place. Recruitment action includes efforts to fill vacancies by advertising, factory notices, notifying public or private employment agencies, notifying trade unions and by contacting, interviewing or selecting applicants already registered with the enterprise or organisation. Jobs available only to persons employed by the enterprise or organisation are excluded.
Job vacancies provide a measure of the demand for labour. When the demand for labour is low, the number of job vacancies decreases. If the demand for labour is high, the number of job vacancies increases. The demand for labour is an indicator of changes in the level of economic activity. Recessions are characterised by a low level of job vacancies, while periods of strong economic growth tend to be characterised by an increase in job vacancies.
The job vacancy rate is calculated by expressing the number of job vacancies as a percentage of occupied jobs plus job vacancies. Government, unions and private bodies monitor job vacancy rates to gain an indication of future levels of employment. A rise in the job vacancy rate is usually followed by an increase in employment.
Job Vacancies, Australia (6354.0)
Contains quarterly estimates of the number of job vacancies by Sector, Industry and State and Territory, and job vacancy rates by State and Territory.