What are skills shortages?


Finding a career that you enjoy and are good at can help you succeed in the workforce.

But it can also be useful to understand what skills are in demand or may be in demand in the future (called 'skills shortages'). The Department of Employment conducts regular research to identify what skills are in short supply across Australia.

The demand for skilled employees can vary from region to region. Skills shortages are caused by many different factors such as:

  • people moving out of regional areas
  • not enough training places for certain skilled occupations
  • changes in technology
  • a large increase in construction work in a region
  • pandemic

Skill shortages can benefit job seekers because:

  • there may be more job vacancies and less competition for people with that skill and
  • wages and conditions may be better if employers need to attract people to the occupation.

For information on which occupations are experiencing skills shortages visit the National, state and territory skill shortage information page on the Department of Employment's website.

This report can help you understand which skills and jobs are in shortage and where there may be opportunities. However, it’s important not to pursue an occupation just because it is currently in shortage. The labour market can change quickly and the occupation may not be in shortage for long. It's more important to find something that you enjoy and that interests you.

These tools can help you: