Job Vacancies, Australia

Latest release

Results of the quarterly Job Vacancies Survey containing estimates of job vacancies classified by industry, sector and state/territory.

Reference period
August 2023
  • Next Release 10/01/2024
    Job Vacancies, Australia, November 2023
  • Next Release 28/03/2024
    Job Vacancies, Australia, February 2024
  • Next Release 27/06/2024
    Job Vacancies, Australia, May 2024
  • View all releases

Key statistics

Seasonally adjusted estimates for August 2023:

  • Total job vacancies were 390,400, a decrease of 8.9% from May 2023.
  • Private sector vacancies were 346,600, a decrease of 9.2% from May 2023.
  • Public sector vacancies were 43,800, a decrease of 6.3% from May 2023.
Job vacancies, public and private sector
  Aug-2023 ('000)Quarterly change (%)Yearly change (%)
TrendPrivate sector354.7-5.4-13.5
Public sector44.7-2.80.0
Private and public sectors399.4-5.1-12.2
Seasonally AdjustedPrivate sector346.6-9.2-16.5
Public sector43.8-6.3-3.1
Private and public sectors390.4-8.9-15.2
OriginalPrivate sector358.3-2.6-16.6
Public sector44.1-6.5-3.2
Private and public sectors402.3-3.0-15.3

Survey impacts and changes

Other measures of labour demand

In addition to Job Vacancies, there are a number of non-ABS indicators that measure labour demand using alternative concepts, sources and methods. These are also widely used as leading indicators of employment. Prominent examples include the ANZ-Indeed Australian Job Ads Index, the SEEK Employment Report, and Jobs and Skills Australia's Internet Vacancy Index. 

Measures of job vacancies and job advertisements will differ for a number of reasons:

  • Job vacancies includes jobs for which job advertisements are undertaken but also includes jobs where other recruitment approaches are exclusively used, such as word of mouth or social media. For example, jobs in the Accommodation and food services industry are more likely to be advertised on social media or in shop front signs. These jobs were one of the key drivers of the boom in job vacancies during the pandemic. 
  • Job vacancies is a count of every position advertised within a single notice, while some job advertisements may be used to fill multiple positions. 
  • Most job advertisement series collect the number of jobs advertised over a period of time, whereas job vacancies are measured on one particular day. The difference between these two measures could be exacerbated during a time of severe labour shortages. That is, if a job is vacant longer, there is more chance it will be vacant on the reference date, yet it would still only count for one job ad.

New approach for estimating the contribution of micro-employers

In the next release, for November quarter 2023, the ABS will implement a modelled approach to account for the contribution of employers with less than five employees.

The model-based approach will reduce the quarterly response burden on these businesses, who are less likely to have job vacancies. Analysis of their contribution over time has also shown that their contribution to estimates can be effectively modelled.

In implementing this new approach, the ABS plans to collect information from a full sample of micro-employers every eighth quarter, to review the performance of the model. However, in the event of a major shock to the labour market (for example, a pandemic), a full sample would be run more frequently.

Additional information will be provided in the November 2023 release, on 10 January.

Job vacancies over time

Job vacancies decreased by 8.9% (37,900 vacancies) in the three months to August 2023 (seasonally adjusted). Despite this being the fifth consecutive quarterly decrease, the level of job vacancies in August 2023 remained elevated. Job vacancies were 71.5% higher than they were in February 2020, prior to the start of the pandemic. The ongoing high level of vacancies reflected the continuing labour shortages in many industries.

The Job Vacancies Survey was suspended between August 2008 to August 2009 (inclusive). 

Businesses reporting vacancies

The number of businesses reporting at least one vacancy shows the extent of the acute reduction in labour demand in May 2020, as well as the subsequent change since then. In February 2020, just prior to the main effects of COVID-19, the proportion of businesses reporting at least one vacancy was 11.0%. In May 2020, a much lower proportion of businesses reported at least one vacancy (6.5%). By November 2022, this had increased to 27.7%. In line with the decrease in the number of vacancies over recent quarters, the proportion of businesses reporting at least one vacancy also decreased to 21.7% in August 2023.

Proportion of businesses reporting vacancies, states and territories (%)
New South Wales19.422.324.226.228.928.027.426.520.1
South Australia13.114.717.617.319.718.416.019.417.2
Western Australia21.519.522.428.325.229.421.623.116.3
Northern Territory20.823.127.831.636.535.626.423.425.8
Australian Capital Territory9.413.416.613.715.513.716.017.115.0
Proportion of businesses reporting vacancies, industry (%)
Electricity, gas, water and waste services9.921.339.234.513.
Wholesale trade22.320.529.516.826.119.923.422.923.1
Retail trade21.415.916.617.723.831.523.021.728.1
Accommodation and food services18.330.932.434.042.545.341.735.531.8
Transport, postal and warehousing15.717.322.422.625.821.516.621.313.2
Information media and telecommunications15.915.519.826.720.429.021.421.315.8
Financial and insurance services10.35.514.820.
Rental, hiring and real estate services19.315.
Professional, scientific and technical services15.416.617.618.019.424.819.622.216.8
Administrative and support services29.830.536.238.332.836.826.734.027.5
Public administration and safety29.827.533.537.937.435.043.332.034.8
Education and training9.79.19.914.68.37.728.928.726.8
Health care and social assistance21.226.718.926.733.417.530.829.521.2
Arts and recreation services9.36.78.310.24.79.318.622.717.8
Other services28.125.432.732.734.436.725.331.118.6
All industries20.320.723.525.226.727.724.324.721.7
Reasons for vacancies (%)
Increased workload42.345.947.847.045.444.044.039.738.6
Expansion of business25.325.725.927.827.825.626.726.424.8
Special event2.

Businesses may have multiple reasons for reporting job vacancies
Proportions are of businesses that reported at least one vacancy

States and territories

Change in job vacancies, states and territories (%)
 NSWVicQldSAWATasNTACTAustraliaAustralia (Seasonally adjusted)Australia (Trend)
Change from previous quarter
Change from corresponding quarter of previous year

Data refers to original series unless otherwise stated

Private sector

Change in job vacancies, private sector (%)
 NSWVicQldSAWATasNTACTAustraliaAustralia (Seasonally adjusted)Australia (Trend)
Change from previous quarter
Change from corresponding quarter of previous year

Data refers to original series unless otherwise stated

Public sector

Change in job vacancies, public sector (%)
 NSWVicQldSAWATasNTACTAustraliaAustralia (Seasonally adjusted)Australia (Trend)
Change from previous quarter
Change from corresponding quarter of previous year

Data refers to original series unless otherwise stated


Job vacancies, industry, original ('000)
Electricity, gas, water and waste services4.
Wholesale trade19.220.516.616.515.315.5
Retail trade40.346.149.936.432.238.5
Accommodation and food services51.959.156.357.842.541.4
Transport, postal and warehousing15.217.715.414.613.412.1
Information media and telecommunications5.
Financial and insurance services20.218.616.814.913.411.3
Rental, hiring and real estate services9.710.
Professional, scientific and technical services42.944.140.847.644.742.5
Administrative and support services38.238.041.338.437.533.2
Public administration and safety24.127.530.126.422.923.6
Education and training12.711.211.113.515.915.5
Health care and social assistance68.974.362.772.472.968.1
Arts and recreation services7.
Other services21.118.818.016.516.114.2

Data Downloads

Time series spreadsheets

Data files

Previous catalogue number

This release previously used catalogue number 6354.0.

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