Experts predict that the new COVID-19 Omicron variant will put a dent in Australia’s growth in 2022. The trade services industry, in particular, will suffer labour shortages due to growing safety concerns, migration restrictions, and the exodus of foreign workers. At the same time, demand for trade services is increasing. More people working from home are considering home improvement projects, while businesses that are starting to reopen are undertaking new construction projects.
As a result of all these factors, people with certain trade skills may find themselves very busy throughout the year. Below are five of the most in-demand trade jobs in Australia for 2022.
Electricians have always been in demand because fully functioning electrical systems are essential for powering homes, businesses, and critical infrastructure. However, this demand will further increase throughout 2022.
The high demand for electricians is mainly driven by the increased reliance on technology. More and more businesses are adopting remote and hybrid work setups. There are also plans to install high-speed rail systems in Sydney and increase the uptake of solar energy, which will require the diverse skill sets of electricians.
In fact, according to SEEK, there are currently over 6,200 job opportunities for electricians in Australia. Plus, electricians command salaries between $70,000 to $100,000, making it one of the most competitive trade jobs in the country.
Construction managers oversee the design, planning, and implementation of various construction projects. As the supervisors on the job site, they’re responsible for handling the logistics of daily operations and leading their team. To become a construction manager, it generally takes one to four years of on-the-job experience. Applicants need a diploma in construction management or Certificate IV in building and construction. They must also have appropriate building licences, induction cards, and registration with the state board.
Given the requirements and dedication necessary for the job, construction managers often come in short supply. As of this writing, there are currently 683 vacancies for construction management positions. Additionally, more construction projects are commencing due to government incentives like the HomeBuilder stimulus, which necessitates the need for more construction managers.
Demand for plumbing services remains strong despite reduced revenue growth during the COVID-19 lockdowns in 2021. This is because maintaining sanitary fixtures, water and gas pipes, drainlayers, and other plumbing systems is vital for health and safety.
In 2022, the number of plumbing projects is expected to increase. SEEK’s recent reports indicate that there are currently 5,658 plumbing job opportunities available. One reason for this is the rise in home construction and renovation projects incentivised by stimulus packages in 2021.
What’s more, plumbing technologies are evolving. There are now tankless water heaters, smart toilets, and greywater recycling systems, and installing these will require skilled plumbers.
Air-conditioning and refrigeration mechanics
Air-conditioning and refrigeration trades have significant labour shortage challenges. The National Career Institute recorded 367 unfilled positions for air-conditioning and refrigeration mechanics. On top of that, demand for air-conditioning installation and maintenance services tend to spike during Australia’s summer months, so mechanics will be extremely busy. To cope with this demand, air-conditioning and refrigeration service companies will need to boost their hiring process for seasonal and contractual workers.
Carpenters and joiners
Carpentry services can expect a surge in demand in 2022, as state governments are offering concessions for current and future homeowners. For example, incentives such as HomeBuilder and First Home Owner Grant in New South Wales proved effective in ramping up sales in construction.
As more home construction and renovation projects commence, more carpenters and joiners will be required to meet labour demand. Moreover, the average salary of carpenters and joiners is $74,000 a year, indicating that market demand is strong despite COVID-19 setbacks. These explain why job outlook forecasts estimate the number of carpenters to increase from 126,600 in 2020 to 136,800 by 2025.
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