Want a job which is future proof? Choose ECEC, data says

by Freya Lucas

January 07

With statistics and research showing just how many employment opportunities can be automated, and numbers showing that for each robot introduced into a workplace, 5.6 human roles were lost, many employees have expressed concern about the role which automation plays in the future of the workforce.

 

Those working in caring professions – such as nursing, aged care, health care, and early childhood education and care (ECEC) – can rest easy, with new research showing that Australia will need “an army” of carers, as well as others in professions such as hospitality, beauty therapy and massage, over the coming years.

 

Employment projections supplied by the Department of Jobs and Small Business indicate that over 90 per cent of new jobs in the next five years will require post school education of some form, as part of a longer structural shift towards professional and service jobs.

 

One of the two broad occupation groups tipped to have the largest employment increase over the next five years are those working in the community and professional service workers sector, which includes those working in ECEC. This group is expected to enjoy a 17.5 per cent increase in available roles.

 

Projected employment growth is strongest for occupations requiring a bachelor degree or higher, increasing by 400,600 or 10 per cent. This is a 45.2 per cent share of the projected employment growth. This is timely for those in the ECEC sector, with an increased demand for early childhood teachers in line with ACECQA changes coming in to effect 1 January 2020.

 

Skill level 4 occupations (Certificate II, III or equivalent) are projected to increase by 256,900 or 7.9 per cent. This accounts for 29 per cent of projected employment growth.

 

Four of the six occupations projected to have the largest increase in employment are Skill level 4 occupations:

 

  • Aged and disabled carers, up 69,200 (39.3 per cent)

 

  • Child carers, up 27,600 (17.6 per cent)

 

  • Waiters, up 21,800 (15.8 per cent)

 

  • Education aides, up 18,800 (20.9 per cent).

 

Labour market analyst Ivan Neville said the projections provide insights into how Australian jobs are changing.

 

‘We are seeing the strongest employment growth in quite traditional service roles… increased demand for childcare is driving growth for carers across the board.’ Mr Neville said.

 

The Courier Mail quotes prominent social researcher, Mark McCrindle as saying he was surprised about the fears in the community of automation leading to large scale job loses.

 

“Things are not as bad as some suggest. People are not going to lose their jobs in mass numbers tomorrow.The effect of automation is a longer-term time frame than many fear.

 

“There’s no need to panic. There is time to plan the next phase of your career path. I would look for a job that involves interaction with people. That’s the common thread in this.

 

“Anything with people skills, thinking skills and which requires human interaction will be in demand.” Mr McCrindle is quoted as saying.

 

To explore the projections further, visit the Labour Market Information Portal.

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