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Report highlights Australia’s in-demand building and construction jobs

06 Feb, 19

Australia’s booming civil infrastructure market is expected to generate several building and construction positions for the first half of 2019

In the January – June 2019 edition of Hays’ ‘Hotspot’s of skills in demand report’, the firm states that the Federal Government’s pledge to spend $75 billion on transport infrastructure is a major driver behind the increase in infrastructure projects across the nation.

Rider Levett Bucknall’s Q3 2018 Crane Index in particular highlights that infrastructure projects increased the number of cranes across Australian skylines to a record high of 735 in late 2018. Yet, the civil infrastructure market won’t be the only market that will drive vacancy activity during the first half of 2019.

Figures from the Australian Construction Industry Forum also forecast an additional $1 billion in residential building in 2020 and stronger than expected non-residential construction activity. Thus, Hays expects construction vacancy activity will remain positive for the first half of 2019, although the top skills in demand vary by location. Therefore, a breakdown of forecast demand is listed below.


Queensland’s construction jobs market will be active this half of the calendar year. Civil construction candidates with Transport and Main Roads (TMR) experience are expected to be in growing demand as companies fulfil their tender requirements. In particular, there is a demand for Project Managers with 10 years of experience, Site Engineers with at least two years of experience and Project Engineers with at least five years of experience on TMR projects.

Rail is another active area for Queensland construction jobs, with Hays expecting that the supply of experienced candidates for Queensland-based rail projects (e.g. Inland Rail, Cross River Rail and Brisbane Metro) will fail to meet demand.


In Western Australia, it is expected that construction and engineering skill shortages will intensify dramatically in response to the Metronet and major mining projects.

Within civil construction, demand will be high for candidates with a rail background who can work on the Metronet project.


Northern Territory

The Northern Territory is expected to continue to face a general shortage of skilled construction candidates during this period.

While construction of the Ichthys project is now complete, skilled workers are still required for local and remote roles. In particular, demand will be high for Project Managers and Site Managers for defence lead roles.



Civil projects are creating a huge demand for Adelaide Site Engineers, Project Engineers, Estimators and Project Managers with rail and road experience.

In mid to late 2019 several government-funded infrastructure projects will enter the delivery phase, which is expected to have an impact on the jobs market.

Overall, however, demand remains high for professionals who have strong industry experience and consistent employment history.


New South Wales

Skilled Supervisors, Project Engineers and Estimators with experience in tunnelling, roads and rail projects are forecast to remain in demand in Sydney.

Contract Administrators, Project Engineers and Site Managers with experience in large health, institutional and commercial projects are also being sought after.



Canberra’s market continues to thrive, with Project Managers, Site Managers and Contract Administrators in demand in the residential market as well as in health, education and infrastructure.



In Tasmania (and Hobart in particular), Project Managers with experience in high-rise construction and civil construction are in demand.



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