Recent IT employment statistics reveal that those seeking IT jobs in Australia will have an excellent chance of getting hired, while those looking to hire new workers for IT jobs in Australia will have a competitive time hiring the best prospects. This situation only increases the importance, for both IT professionals and businesses, of using a reliable IT placement firm to make the necessary connections.

The Challenge of Filling IT Roles

All across Australia, businesses are struggling to fill IT positions with qualified workers. This is true despite the unusually high 12 percent unemployment rate that the nation is experiencing. A job skills gap is clearly taking its toll on the economy by causing costly labour shortages in certain industries, including the IT industry., recently conducted a survey of five major Australian cities that covered 18 major industries. The results were somewhat mixed. Australia led the world in seeing 72 percent of its job vacancies filled in one month’s time or less, much superior to the U.K. rate of 51 percent or the U.S. rate of 44 percent. At the same time, however, there were 20 industries with substantial percentages of jobs still unfilled after 90 days of waiting. Actuaries were the slowest jobs to be filled, with 19 percent still vacant after 90 days. Various sales positions, financial advisers, and travel agents also ranked high at over 10 percent. Yet, over a third of the 20 slowest job categories to be filled were IT jobs. Among the most difficult to fill IT jobs in Australia were computer software quality-assurance personnel, software engineers, and management analysts.

The Impact of Empty IT Positions

CareerBuilder’s IT employment statistics tell us that these IT job vacancies have a major negative impact on many businesses. Both productivity and profit-margins suffer. An IT job left open for over three months, for example, is estimated to cost some over 18,000 Australian dollars (14,000 U.S. dollars). Furthermore, over 40 percent of employers surveyed said that long-term vacancies lower the morale of their employees. This is because of the extra work load left for current employees to carry. Another 40 percent indicated that some tasks are simply left undone, and 34 percent answered that unfilled positions significantly delay their business operations.

A National Problem That May Be Worsening

Unfortunately, the IT skills gap in Australia is showing signs of getting yet worse. The time it took to fill IT vacancies nearly doubled in October 2014 compared to previous months. Earlier it had been taking five to 10 days to fill positions, but that number shot up to 13 to 25 days in October. The reason for these extended delays seems to have been the competitiveness of the IT market. Every state and territory felt the impact of this slow-down in IT position filling. South Australia was hit hardest, its average wait time jumping from nine to 25 days. In Victoria, the wait went from seven to 16 days; in Western Australia, from seven to 13 days; and in Queensland, from nine days to 20.

ACT Recruitment Challenges

ACT recruiters, in particular, saw challenging times. Their average wait time rose from 34 to 40 days. ACT recruitment has always been difficult, but now it is harder than ever. Partly, this fact stems from federal departments increasing the ACT demand, while the local talent pool struggles to match that heightened demand.

An Under-Used Labour Market

Even if certain IT roles are slow to fill and the need to import skilled labour exists, it is also true that Australian labour overall is under-sourced as compared to some other countries. For example, under-utilisation of the labour force is estimated at 14 percent for Australia but at only 2.5 percent for New Zealand. Better ability to find skilled workers already in Australia must also be a part of the solution.


The above-given IT employment statistics establish clearly that Australia is in need of new IT applicants. This need stretches across the whole industry, but some of the most sought-for positions include: system engineers, solution architects, and Java software developers. Anyone living in Australia who has IT skills, or who is willing to relocate to Australia, will be likely to find gainful employment. Australian companies looking to complete their IT departments will have fierce competition. IT recruitment agencies offer both employers and IT professionals a convenient way to match existing skills to pressing vacancies.