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
February 2024
  • Next Release 27/06/2024
    Job Vacancies, Australia, May 2024
  • Next Release 26/09/2024
    Job Vacancies, Australia, August 2024
  • Next Release 8/01/2025
    Job Vacancies, Australia, November 2024
  • View all releases

Key statistics

Seasonally adjusted estimates for February 2024:

  • Total job vacancies were 363,800, a decrease of 6.1% from November 2023.
  • Private sector vacancies were 323,700, a decrease of 6.1% from November 2023.
  • Public sector vacancies were 40,100, a decrease of 6.1% from November 2023.
Job vacancies, public and private sector
  Feb-2024 ('000)Quarterly change (%)Yearly change (%)
TrendPrivate sector324.8-4.2-17.7
Public sector40.4-4.6-14.3
Private and public sectors365.3-4.3-17.4
Seasonally AdjustedPrivate sector323.7-6.1-18.1
Public sector40.1-6.1-14.6
Private and public sectors363.8-6.1-17.7
OriginalPrivate sector323.8-5.7-18.4
Public sector39.0-9.9-14.7
Private and public sectors362.7-6.1-18.0

Survey impacts and changes

New approach for estimating the contribution of micro-employers

From the November quarter 2023 release, the ABS has implemented 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.

More detail is available in Methodological News, December Quarter 2023 | Australian Bureau of Statistics (

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.

Intention to retire the additional estimates produced during the COVID-19 period

During the COVID-19 period, the ABS produced some additional insights from the Job Vacancies Survey to complement its longstanding estimates of job vacancies. This included estimates of the proportion of businesses reporting vacancies and reasons for vacancies. 

With the release of February 2024 data, which will be four years of publishing this additional data, the ABS has reviewed the ongoing value of these series. Given they provide only limited additional insights into labour demand, beyond the range of standard Job Vacancies tables, the ABS intends to cease publishing these additional series after this release. 

However, if you have any feedback on the recent usefulness of these additional estimates or have any concerns with them being retired, please contact us at

Job vacancies over time

Job vacancies decreased by 6.1% (23,600 vacancies) in the three months to February 2024 (seasonally adjusted). Despite this being the seventh consecutive quarterly decrease, the level of job vacancies in February 2024 remained elevated. Job vacancies were 59.8% 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 18.3% in February 2024.

With the new approach for estimating the number of vacancies for micro-employers, the contribution to the proportion of businesses reporting vacancies for these employers will also be modelled from November 2023.

Proportion of businesses reporting vacancies, states and territories (%)
New South Wales24.226.228.928.027.426.520.118.818.5
South Australia17.617.319.718.416.019.417.215.319.4
Western Australia22.428.325.229.421.623.116.317.116.1
Northern Territory27.831.636.535.626.423.425.820.921.4
Australian Capital Territory16.613.715.513.716.
Proportion of businesses reporting vacancies, industry (%)
Electricity, gas, water and waste services39.234.513.
Wholesale trade29.516.826.119.923.422.923.121.123.8
Retail trade16.617.723.831.523.021.728.117.116.3
Accommodation and food services32.434.042.545.341.735.531.825.620.3
Transport, postal and warehousing22.422.625.821.516.621.313.220.910.3
Information media and telecommunications19.826.720.429.021.421.315.816.431.1
Financial and insurance services14.820.
Rental, hiring and real estate services20.125.227.326.113.913.015.78.718.8
Professional, scientific and technical services17.618.019.424.819.622.216.816.19.3
Administrative and support services36.238.332.836.826.734.027.528.632.4
Public administration and safety33.537.937.435.043.332.034.829.625.1
Education and training9.914.68.37.728.928.726.817.818.1
Health care and social assistance18.926.733.417.530.829.521.220.322.6
Arts and recreation services8.310.24.79.318.622.717.810.816.1
Other services32.732.734.436.725.331.118.623.218.3
All industries23.525.226.727.724.324.721.719.718.3
Reasons for vacancies (%)
Increased workload47.847.045.444.044.039.738.638.939.2
Expansion of business25.927.827.825.626.726.424.826.326.2
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 trade16.616.515.315.514.016.2
Retail trade49.936.432.238.537.232.1
Accommodation and food services56.357.842.541.438.835.1
Transport, postal and warehousing15.414.613.412.111.510.1
Information media and telecommunications4.
Financial and insurance services16.814.913.411.310.011.7
Rental, hiring and real estate services9.
Professional, scientific and technical services40.847.644.742.541.434.6
Administrative and support services41.338.437.533.231.530.0
Public administration and safety30.126.422.923.623.819.0
Education and training11.113.515.915.513.615.6
Health care and social assistance62.772.472.968.167.565.0
Arts and recreation services7.
Other services18.016.516.114.213.512.6

Data Downloads

Time series spreadsheets

Data files

Previous catalogue number

This release previously used catalogue number 6354.0.

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