Recruitment Experiences and Outlook Survey
The National Skills Commission surveys approximately 1,200 employers each month to find out about their experience when recruiting staff as well as whether they are expecting to increase staffing levels. This feedback provides insights about labour market conditions and to develop resources designed to help job seekers understand what employers are looking for.
Key indicators - April 2022
|Recruitment activity||Recruitment difficulty rate||Expect to increase staff|
|No change since March 2022||No change since March 2022||Up by 4% pts since March 2022|
Note: Employers in flood affected regions of New South Wales and Queensland were generally not surveyed throughout March 2022. Results for these two states should therefore be used with caution.
In April 2022:
- 56% of employers were recruiting or had recruited in the past month - equal to the record high of the previous month
- The recruitment rate was higher in Rest of State areas (60%) compared with Capital Cities (54%).
Proportion of employers that were currently recruiting or who had recruited in the past month
In April 2022 the recruitment difficulty rate stood at 64%, the second highest monthly result since the series began in August 2020 and unchanged from the previous month.
Recruitment difficulty rate
Staff changes over the past month
In April 2022, employers more often reported an increase in their staffing levels over the month than a decrease.
- 14% of employers increased staff numbers over the past month.
- 11% of employers decreased staff numbers over the past month.
- The ‘net staffing change’ (proportion of employers who increased staff minus the proportion that decreased staff) was +3 percentage points in April 2022.
Employers are asked how they expect their staffing levels to change over the next 3 months.
In April 2022:
- 36% of employers expected to increase their staffing levels, a record high
- 2% of employers expected to decrease their staffing levels.
Employers expecting to increase their staffing levels over the next 3 months
Recruitment Insights Report – monthly
The Recruitment Insights Report highlights key findings and trends in recruitment activity, recruitment difficulty and future staffing expectations. Each report is accompanied by an excel datafile containing time series data for each key indicator. Each report also features a 'Spotlight' section which explores a particular topic.
The April 2022 Spotlight is on recruitment difficulty for truck drivers.
The March 2022 report includes a spotlight on the job status of employers' recent hires.
The February 2022 report includes a spotlight on measuring recruitment difficulty.
The January 2022 report includes a spotlight on the reasons for recruitment by industry and occupation.
The December 2021 report includes a spotlight on retention difficulty.
The November 2021 report includes a spotlight on the impacts of recruitment difficulty.
The October 2021 report includes a spotlight on recruitment difficulty for hospitality workers.
The September 2021 report includes a spotlight on employers’ single greatest future concern.
The August 2021 report includes a spotlight on employers with staff stood down, on reduced hours, or working from home.
The July 2021 report includes a spotlight on employers with retention difficulty.
The June 2021 report includes a spotlight on recruitment experiences and expectations within the Accommodation and Food Services industry.
The May 2021 report includes a spotlight on recruitment experiences and expectations within the Health Care and Social Assistance industry.
The April 2021 report includes a spotlight on recruitment methods used by employers.
The March 2021 report includes a spotlight on risks to businesses staying open.
The February 2021 report includes a spotlight on the impact of COVID-19 on businesses and changes to staffing levels throughout 2020.
Information collected from employers throughout 2020 is presented in the report: Employers' Insights on the Australian Labour Market - 2020 Data Report.
As the year progressed and the number of lockdowns reduced, businesses were less impacted by COVID-19.
As businesses became more confident the recruitment rate began to pick up around Australia.
The use of internet and social media as recruitment methods has increased in recent times. This trend accelerated during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The National Skills Commission (NSC) conducts the Recruitment Experiences and Outlook Survey (REOS) to monitor recruitment activity and conditions across Australia.
The REOS surveys employers across Australia, and up to 14,000 businesses respond to the survey throughout the year.
The survey collects information on employer recruitment activity, recruitment difficulty and staffing outlook – all important indicators to help policy makers and analysts to monitor and understand current and emerging labour market conditions. Data are released as close to collection as possible, providing an almost real-time view of recruitment activity across Australia.
The REOS questionnaire continually evolves to stay current with changes in the Australian labour market that directly impact on businesses and their recruitment.
For more information on the survey methodology, key concepts used in the survey and to view the questionnaire, see the paper:
The National Skills Commission conducts an ongoing survey of employers to understand recruitment activity in the labour market and the impacts of COVID-19 on Australian jobs and businesses.
You may have been directed to this page by one of our interviewers.
The quality of this research relies heavily on the participation of employers like you. We know that your time is valuable and completing this survey will take less than 5 minutes.
What will you be asked?
We will ask you about the extent of the impact that COVID-19 has had on your business and how you have had to operate your business differently; how your staffing levels may have changed; and whether you have new staffing arrangements in place.
We will also ask you whether you have recently tried to recruit staff and your experiences during this process.
We understand that some of these questions may be difficult to answer, but we value your direct input and appreciate your contribution, at a time that is challenging for many people.
How will the information be used?
With things changing rapidly, accurate and timely data is essential. The information you provide will assist us to understand recruitment activity in the Australian economy, as well as the real-time impacts of COVID-19 on Australian jobs and businesses. This data will assist in the development of effective, targeted, and well-designed policy responses.
Information from the survey will be available on this website and on .
Our commitment to you
The information you provide is kept secure and confidential. Your information is combined with responses from other employers to produce aggregated statistics on recruitment activity, future staffing expectations, and how the COVID-19 pandemic is impacting Australian businesses. This means individual businesses are not identified. Please view our privacy statement for more information.