Employment and Earnings, Public Sector, Australia

This release has ceased

Contains estimates of public sector employees and cash wages and salaries by level of government, state and industry

Reference period
2021-22 financial year

Key statistics

There were 2,160,000 public sector employees at the end of June 2022 comprising:

  • 254,000 employees in Commonwealth government;
  • 1,713,500 in state government; and
  • 192,500 in local government.

Total public sector cash wages and salaries in 2021-22 was $193,960.9 million.

Public sector employees and cash wages and salaries
 Employees June 2022Cash wages and salaries 2021-22
Commonwealth Government254.024,489.0
State Government1,713.5154,776.6
Local Government192.514,695.3
Total Public Sector2,160.0193,960.9

Additional information

Upcoming changes

This release contains the final public sector Survey of Employment and Earnings (SEE) estimates which are collected directly from businesses. From 2023, estimates will be compiled using Single Touch Payroll data from the Australian Taxation Office. These estimates will be released as Public Sector Employment and Earnings (PSEE) to differentiate from SEE.

Experimental 2021-22 PSEE data will be added to this SEE publication later this year.

Guide to labour statistics

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 Industry employment and Earnings data.


Although earnings estimates relate to the full twelve months of the financial year, employment estimates relate to the last pay period ending in June of the given year. Given these differences, the ABS does not recommend using these components together to calculate average earnings. This is particularly true during the 2019-20, 2020-21 and 2021-22 financial years, given the extent of short-term changes in the labour market during the pandemic.

Estimates in this release may differ from other available information due to differences in coverage and/or the classification of organisations. For further details, refer to the Comparability of results section of the Methodology.


Public sector employees, level of government, states and territories
 June 2021  June 2022  
ACT(a)r76.528.5. .r105.078.229.0. .107.3

. . not applicable
(a) The ACT Local and State government estimates have been combined for confidentiality reasons. The result is displayed under the ACT State estimate and associated totals.
r revised

States and territories

Public sector cash wages and salaries, level of government, states and territories
 2020-21  2021-22  
ACT(a)r7,736.72,771.8. .r10,508.58,169.22,846.9. .11,016.0

. . not applicable
(a) The ACT Local and State government estimates have been combined for confidentiality reasons. The result is displayed under the ACT State estimate and associated totals.
r revised


Public sector employees and cash wages and salaries, industry
 EmployeesCash wages and salaries
 June 2021June 20222020-212021-22
Electricity, gas, water and waste services51.452.26,078.06,341.7
Transport, postal and warehousing79.176.97,787.87,910.0
Information media and telecommunications15.515.51,755.31,742.7
Financial and insurance services14.915.71,852.01,997.3
Rental, hiring and real estate services2.63.0271.5279.0
Professional, scientific and technical Servicesr31.430.4r2,855.53,252.8
Public administration and safety659.8673.5r59,513.763,405.0
Education and training641.1652.249,677.851,196.8
Health care and social assistance570.8599.550,239.454,640.7
Arts and recreation services18.319.71,162.21,218.7
Other industries(a)12.714.31,033.91,182.9
All industriesr2,103.92,160.0r182,941.7193,960.9

(a) Includes Agriculture, forestry and fishing, Mining, Manufacturing, Wholesale trade, Retail trade, Accommodation and food services, Administrative and support services and Other services.
r revised


Previously published estimates for 2020-21 have been revised as a result of new information received from organisations and improved imputation. The extent of revisions may differ between data items, states/territories, level of government and industries. These revisions are reflected in the Employees, States and territories and Industry tables, and the associated time series spreadsheet.


For inquiries about these and related statistics, contact the Customer Assistance Service via the ABS website Contact Us page. The ABS Privacy Policy outlines how the ABS will handle any personal information that you provide to us.

Data downloads

In line with updating to more recent technology formats, ABS will be progressively transitioning to Excel files in .XLSX format from 3 December 2021. This means the timeseries spreadsheets in Employment and Earnings, Public Sector, Australia, will now be released in .XLSX. While this change will improve usability, it may also require changes to automated macros or similar programs that users may have in place that call on the previous file extension format. 

The file format for previously released data will not change.

Public sector employees and cash wages and salaries

Previous catalogue number

This release previously used catalogue number 6248.0.55.002.

Back to top of the page