Recruitment Market Segment LS
Recruitment Market Segment RS
Thursday, 09 April 2020 10:26

Online job ads take a hammering due to coronavirus pandemic

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Online job ads take a hammering due to coronavirus pandemic Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

National job listings on the online site SEEK declined by 65.3% during the week that ended on 5 April, the company says, adding that it had decided to issue data about ads out of its regular monthly schedule due to the massive decline that was happening due to the coronavirus pandemic.

SEEK managing director Kendra Banks said the year had gotten off to a rocky start due to the bushfires and job ad volumes had been down between 7% and 11% compared to the corresponding period in 2019.

"However, the latest numbers show just how much coronavirus has impacted the labour market," Banks said. "Since the beginning of March, national job ads have declined by;

  • "12.6% in the week ended 8 March;
  • "17.3% in the week ended 15 March;
  • "41.3% in the week ended 22 March;
  • "64.6% in the week ended 29 March; and,
  • "65.3% last week, the week that ended 5 April."

Banks said there were two distinct changes taking place in the labour market at the moment.

"Unsurprisingly and unfortunately there is a mass reduction in the number of jobs available at a national level, whilst simultaneously there is an urgent demand for workers in specific industries," she said.

seek graph

Job ad volumes 2019 compared to 2020.

“Victoria and New South Wales are showing the biggest declines in the past week with job ads down 71.6% and 67.4% respectively.

"Speaking with customers, we have been encouraged to hear that corporate Australia is working together. Where companies have had to stand down workers, they are speaking to businesses who have an immediate need for labour to see if they can deploy staff into those roles."

Banks said, however, organisations servicing the essential retail sector, and aspects of the healthcare sector had an urgent need for skilled and non-skilled workers.

"As businesses pivot to virtual and online delivery of goods and services, and many employees work from home, there is increased demand for cyber-security specialists, and technology and product specialists to support these transitions," she said.

"We are also seeing the impact of large organisations like banks, insurance, telecommunications and airlines bringing their call centre and shared services back to Australian shores.

“The uptick in resources sees large resource companies hiring for highly skilled roles such as diesel fitters, auto electricians, as well as general skilled roles such as truck drivers and diggers."

Jobs are available in the following sectors:

  • Essential retail services: roles across warehouse and distribution such as shelf stackers, delivery drivers, supply chain managers and warehousing supervisors.
  • Manufacturing: additional demand for household staples has driven the need for more workers to keep up with production, so factories can operate at an increased capacity.
  • Mining & Resources: Large resource companies are looking for highly skilled roles such as diesel fitters, auto electricians and also more general skilled roles like truck drivers and machine operators.
  • Virtual working / Digitisation: software development and cyber security are in demand.
  • Family support; nannies and tutors, as parents and carers, who now need to work from home, look for additional support with care and education.
  • Healthcare: Nursing – Aged Care, General Medical & Surgical, Pharmacy, Physiotherapy, OT & Rehabilitation, Psychology, Counselling & Social Work.
  • Customer support: call centre operators and managers and customer support staff.

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Sam Varghese

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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