Annual employment growth
Machinery Operators and Drivers operate machines, vehicles and are mainly employed in Transport, Postal and Warehousing, Manufacturing and Construction. More than one third of workers are employed in regional Australia.
The National Skills Commission's 2021 Skills Priority List anticipates strong projected future demand for the following Machinery Operators and Driver occupations: Truck Driver, Storeperson and Agricultural and Horticultural Mobile Plant Operator.
Top employing occupations
Post-school qualifications are often not essential to gain employment in this group, but tickets or licences are mandatory for many positions. Employers value skills such as communication, teamwork, problem solving, creativity and initiative. If you are considering working in this area, it may pay to look beyond vacancy websites. Around one in five employers use social media when hiring Machinery Operators and Drivers and it is not uncommon for positions to be advertised through word-of-mouth or by recruitment agencies.
This occupation group is mostly male (89% of the workforce). Within this group though, there is some variation, with females accounting for one in five people employed as Storepersons.
Employment by occupation subgroup, Machinery Operators and Drivers
|Employment||Employment Profile||Workforce Educational Profile||Projected Employment|
|Employ’t May 2021||5 year change
to May 2021
|Part-time||Female||Aged 15 to 24 years||Aged 55 years or older||Bachelor degree or higher||Cert III or higher VET qual||No post-school qual||5 year change to May 2025|
|Machine and Stationary Plant Operators||166.3||-4.3||-2.5||10||16||8||23||6||39||48||1.7|
|Mobile Plant Operators||140.7||20.3||16.9||10||4||8||27||6||31||53||-0.1|
|Road and Rail Drivers||353.4||4.8||1.4||24||6||8||33||13||29||51||7.9|
|All Machinery Operators and Drivers||790.4||28.7||3.8||19||11||11||27||11||31||51||4.4|
Sources: ABS, Australian and New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations; ABS, Characteristics of Employment; ABS, Education and Work; ABS, Labour Force (seasonally adjusted and annual averages of original data); National Skills Commission, Survey of Employers’ Recruitment Experiences; National Skills Commission, Employers’ Insights on the Australian Labour Market: 2020 Data Report; National Skills Commission, Skills Priority List, 2021.