Tough Victorian labour market sees four job seekers compete for every entry-level job

Thursday 19 October 2017

New research shows almost four entry-level job seekers are competing for every entry-level job in Victoria, as the number of vacancies for low-skilled workers continues to slide.

Anglicare Australia’s 2017 Jobs Availability Snapshot, released today, shows Victoria’s entry-level job seekers are being left behind in Australia’s jobs boom.

Anglicare Victoria chief executive officer Paul McDonald said the lack of suitable entry-level positions was a serious problem for people struggling to get a leg-up into the labour market.

“If you’re a young school leaver looking for your first job, a sole parent or someone returning to work after a lengthy break, the odds are firmly stacked against you,’’ he said.

“While there has been a marginal improvement in work prospects in Victoria and across Australia in 2017, the overall outlook for anyone with entry-level qualifications who wants a job is poor.”

The latest snapshot, taken in May 2017, shows:

  • almost four entry-level job seekers for every entry-level job in Victoria
  • 6,750 jobs suitable jobs advertised for more than 25,800 job seekers with entry-level qualifications.

“However, we know this is only the tip of the iceberg – as the figures don’t take into account the many more highly qualified workers who are also applying for these positions,’’ Mr McDonald said.

“Entry level jobs are also more likely to be offered on a casual basis, leading to widespread under employment and preventing people from getting a stable foothold into the jobs market.’’

The snapshot showed a steady decline in entry-level jobs available in Victoria since 2010 – down from around 10,000 advertised per month in 2010 to between 6000 and 7000 per month in 2017.

Mr McDonald said the figures showed it was clear the Government could no longer leave the fate of entry-level job seekers to the market.

“Crackdowns which aim to get people off welfare won’t work if there are no jobs for people to go to.

“Instead, governments should do more to invest in training that creates real career opportunities for people in sectors like disability and aged care where there is a big need for entry-level workers.

“We also need to raise the rate of Newstart – which has not seen a real increase for 23 years.

“Payments are so inadequate that they do not even cover the costs of living, let alone the expenses involved in searching for a job, and leave people trapped in a cycle of poverty.’’

Contact: Janine Sim-Jones, Media and Communications Mob: 0447 493 123

Read Anglicare Australia’s Jobs Availability Snapshot here.

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