NSC research on business’ staffing expectations

This story was first published on Monday 6 July 2020. If you wish to use this content, please contact media@skillscommission.gov.au to confirm that the information is still current.

The National Skills Commission’s most recent survey of businesses across Australia has seen business’ expectations of future staffing levels continue to improve.

In the week ending 26 June, the proportion of businesses expecting to increase their staffing levels in the coming months was 21%, the highest since mid-February. For some of these businesses, ‘increasing staffing levels’ may include reinstating staff who had been temporarily stood down or replacing staff who had been let go from the business due to the pandemic.

On the flipside, the proportion of businesses expecting to decrease staff numbers in the coming months remains very low at just 3%, having declined significantly from a peak of 28% at the beginning of April.

The survey also found that businesses in the Accommodation and Food Services industry were most likely to expect to increase staffing levels in the coming months (35%), due mainly to the recent easing of restrictions which have allowed many cafés and restaurants to reopen or expand their opening hours.

Of the more than 1,000 businesses surveyed In June, 92% were either very confident or somewhat confident that they will be able to stay open for the next six months. This varied by industry, with 74% of businesses in Wholesale Trade ‘very confident’ of staying open, while only 54% of businesses in Accommodation and Food Services were ‘very confident’ of remaining open.

For more information on the Impacts of COVID-19 on businesses - future staffing expectations and business confidence survey please email RecruitmentAnalysis@skillscommission.gov.au. Previous editions of this report are available on the Labour Market Information Portal.