The majority of Australian workers keen to quit their jobs are looking to change industries, LinkedIn data reveals

The majority of Australian workers keen to quit their jobs are looking to change industries, LinkedIn data reveals
William West/AFP/Getty Images
  • LinkedIn’s end of year survey found the majority of Australians looking for new positions hoped to change industries.
  • The findings support previous research that shows the easing of lockdown restrictions led to an uptick in attrition.
  • 26% of Australian workers changed jobs in October compared with the same month in 2019.
  • Visit Business Insider Australia’s homepage for more stories.

Amid fears Australia would succumb to the ‘Great Resignation’ that has seen workers leaving the US workforce in droves, employment figures instead show the country experienced a reshuffle instead, according to LinkedIn.

LinkedIn’s annual Workforce Confidence Index showed that among those open to changing jobs, nearly six out of 10 are considering a change in industry.

The results echo similar data released by LinkedIn in November that showed employees are transitioning to new jobs at the fastest pace since the start of the pandemic, with 26% of Australian workers changing jobs in October compared with the same month in 2019.

The surge in job changes follows markedly low levels of employee turnover during the pandemic. Over the past two years, Australia experienced the lowest employee turnover since the ABS began tracking labour mobility.

LinkedIn’s figures also suggested job seekers could have the upper hand in negotiations, with the number of applications per job down 63% compared to the same period last year.

The end of year survey showed women were slightly more likely than men to be considering a career change, at 60% and 56% respectively.

Two-thirds of the respondents say they are not considering switching industries because they enjoy the nature of the work they do, with 37% of women citing a desire to find more flexible work hours as the reason behind the change.

Overall, better alignment with interests or values is the most common reason for considering a change, with 46% of respondents citing this as the reason behind their desire to move on.

Adam Gregory, APAC Talent & Learning Solution Senior Director at LinkedIn, said much of the workforce change was driven by transformation in the job market, which had seen a surge in demand in some sectors.

“Over the past six years, the job market has evolved at a rapid rate, meaning acquiring new skills in the workplace is more important than ever before,” Gregory said.

“The pandemic continues to have an ongoing impact on the way we work and we’re seeing the changes in the skillset required by Australians being driven by the need to adopt new operating models,” he said.

A major story of the past year has been a skills shortage driven in large part by the loss of talent due to almost two years of closed international borders.

Some of Australia’s biggest tech companies, along with a raft of startups, told Business Insider Australia this year they had struggled to fill specialist roles.

Along with several specialist training programs run by Amazon and Adobe, the government this year launched the Tech Council of Australia (TCA), the peak body founded in August to influence tech policy and grow the sector to a value of $250 billion by 2030.

Gregory said LinkedIn’s survey findings were reflective of the ways digital transformation, along with changes propelled by the pandemic, had altered the employment landscape.

“To prepare for the future, Australians should continue to upskill where necessary,” he said.

LinkedIn data shows that skills for the same occupation have changed by about 25% from 2015 to 2021.