Multiple job-holding edges up to a new record high

Media Release

The number of multiple job-holders increased to 947,000 people in the March quarter 2023, an increase of 2.1 per cent, according to figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

Bjorn Jarvis, ABS head of labour statistics, said: “The number of multiple job-holders reached a record high of 947,000 people in the March quarter. This was an increase of 19,000 people since the December quarter and 173,000 higher than before the pandemic.”

“The multiple job-holding rate was 6.6 per cent in the March quarter 2023 – up slightly from a rounded 6.6 per cent in the December quarter 2022. In the December quarter 2019, before the start of the pandemic, it was 5.8 per cent.”

“This is the highest the multiple job-holding rate has been in the Labour Account data that goes back to 1994. It means that around one in fifteen people now have more than one job.”, Mr Jarvis said.

Hours worked increased by 0.5 per cent in the March quarter, following the 2.0 per cent increase in the December quarter 2022. While hours worked increased, National Accounts data showed that labour productivity declined by 0.3 per cent (see media note).

Filled jobs increased by 0.7 per cent, with increases in both main jobs (up 0.5 per cent) and secondary jobs (up 3.5 per cent) in the March quarter. The relative stronger growth in secondary jobs also meant their share of filled jobs rose to a record high of 7.0 per cent.

The proportion of jobs that were vacant was 2.8 per cent, down from the high of 3.2 per cent in the September quarter 2022. It was still well above its pre-pandemic level of 1.6 per cent.

“While the share of jobs that are vacant has fallen from the peak in the September quarter 2022, it is still much higher than before the pandemic. This continues to highlight the difficulties that many employers are facing in filling vacancies.”, Mr Jarvis said.


"The growth in filled jobs in the March quarter was concentrated in industries economists often refer to as the ‘non-market’ sector – that is, the predominantly public sector industries of Public administration and safety, Education and training, and Health care and social assistance. Filled jobs in that group of industries increased by 2.8 per cent. In contrast, there was no growth in filled jobs for the combined grouping of other industries (that is, the ‘market’ sector)."

"In the market sector, the largest increases in filled jobs were in Arts and recreation services (up 6.1 per cent) and Accommodation and food services (up 4.9 per cent), while jobs fell in Professional, scientific and technical services (down 4.0 per cent), Manufacturing (down 3.4 per cent), and Construction (down 2.7 per cent).", Mr Jarvis said.

Hours worked followed a similar pattern to filled jobs, with combined growth for industries in the non-market sector of 4.6 per cent, compared with a decline in hours worked of 0.8 per cent in the market sector.

Multiple job-holding

The increase in the number of multiple job-holders in the March quarter was largely driven by increases in the Health care and social assistance (up 7,000 people) and Accommodation and food services (up 4,000 people) industries. Health care and social assistance continued to have the highest number of multiple job-holders (155,000).

The Agriculture, forestry and fishing and Administrative and support services industries had the highest rates of multiple job-holding (9.2 per cent and 9.1 per cent).

“Data from the Labour Force Survey shows that a higher proportion of women are multiple job-holders than men – 7.7 per cent compared with 5.7 per cent. Younger people are also more likely to hold multiple jobs, with 7.9 per cent of people aged 15-19 and 8.9 per cent of 20-24 year-olds holding multiple jobs.” Mr Jarvis said.

People who were Community and personal service workers in their main job were most likely of all occupation groups to have more than one job (10.2 per cent). Multiple job-holding was lowest among Technicians and trade workers (3.4 per cent).

Media notes

  • Labour productivity for the whole economy is measured as gross domestic product per hour worked, while labour productivity for the market and non-market sectors is measured as gross value added per hour worked. Labour productivity estimates, which use Labour Accounts hours worked data, are published in the quarterly Australian National Accounts.

  • The Australian Labour Account complements other ABS measures to build a more comprehensive picture of the labour market. Labour Account provides the number of filled jobs at a point-in-time each quarter, while the annual Jobs in Australia provides insights into all jobs held throughout the year, and Labour Force Survey measures the number of people employed each month.

  • To learn more about our different labour measures, their purpose and how to use them, see our Guide to labour statistics. It provides summary information on labour market topics including employment by industry.

  • Data contained in this media release refer to seasonally adjusted estimates, unless otherwise stated.

  • A glossary of terms used in this media release is available with the publication.

  • When reporting ABS data you must attribute the Australian Bureau of Statistics (or the ABS) as the source.

  • For media requests and interviews, contact the ABS Media Team via (8.30am-5pm Mon-Fri).

  • Find official images of our ABS media spokespeople, including Bjorn Jarvis, ABS head of labour statistics, via our Media Centre image library.

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