BRISBANE’S employment market is one of the strongest in the country, with growth in retail and public service sectors according to Michael Page.
The global recruitment consultancy has reported a shortage of roles at a senior level in the city, as a result of downsizing and employees becoming more selective.
Michael Page Queensland director Joss Godbold specialises in executive-level recruitment in the finance sector and shares his insight with Brisbane Business News.
Which industries have reported a high amount of employment availability?
We have seen a strengthening in the retail sector employment market in Brisbane this year. There has also been a reasonably steady need for professionals in financial services industries, especially across retail banking and superannuation. Recruitment by oil and gas employers has remained steady but this trend is likely to dissipate as the year progresses. However, it is rare to see industries with a ‘high’ amount of vacancies currently as the market remains competitive and in rich supply of candidates.
Have you noticed any particular trends in the Brisbane market?
The most obvious trend is the lack of roles at the senior level. This has largely been due to downsizing and the reduction of senior roles in the small-cap and exploration mining sector. When activity in this sector is going well, it seems to occupy far more of the senior roles in the overall market than its size would suggest. There is also a trend for employees to be more selective about the next role they consider and move to, making it harder to attract quality staff.
What do jobseekers look for in a position?
There is a range of factors that professionals usually seek in a role, but the desire for stability has definitely been a consistent factor. However, the desire to move into a business with a high degree of potential growth has certainly been tempered by risk-averse candidates with a desire to join diverse businesses. There has been a move away from candidates being keen to join the mining industry.
What kind of skills should jobseekers consider adopting to boost employability?
This is tough because employers aren’t looking for skills that have been gained in a short-term period. Employers are aware of the strength of candidates in the market and are looking for individuals with good tenure in roles, experience in strong companies, good reasons for changing positions and strong interpersonal skills. However, for any jobseeker, it is very important to research the company they are applying to, tailor their CV for each application, have clear reasons about why the job is attractive to them and, above all, be patient. The right role may take a while to secure in this market.
How is the outlook for employment shaping up?Brisbane is one of the stronger employment markets in Australia. While activity in the mining sector is slowing, activity in financial services, retail, manufacturing and the public sector is strong. Population growth in Brisbane is also helping market optimism, while conditions in the Perth and Melbourne employment markets are tougher. I can’t see any major reasons why conditions should deteriorate from where they are now and a lower dollar and cost savings should see an increase in optimism in the medium-term.
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