NSC Key Projects
The Emerging Occupations project is a prime example of the NSC’s data-driven approach to analysis of Australia’s labour market. It focuses on emerging skills and how they change existing jobs, by mining data and identifying patterns with machine learning tools to determine new and frequently advertised jobs that are substantially different to occupations already defined in the Australian and New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations (ANZSCO).
To date, the NSC has identified and validated 25 emerging occupations that fall within 7 distinct clusters:
Occupations in this cluster reflect the growing role of data in business decision-making and jobs include data scientists, data analysts and data engineers among others. For example, within VET an individual can study towards a Certificate IV Junior Cyber Security Analyst on their pathway to a future career in data analysis.
Emerging business practices
Within this cluster are found roles like logistics analysts and ‘agile’ coaches (‘agile’ being a project management methodology) which are associated with how workplaces are re-organising roles as they adapt to technological change and new business models.
Logistics-focused VET courses range from Certificate II to Advanced Diploma and can serve as a starting point for individuals seeking a pathway to logistic management roles and even project management.
As one of the fastest growing sectors of the economy, health professions like biostatisticians, nurse liaisons and respiratory therapists are key examples of changing specialisations emerging in the field.
As with many pathways in the health professions, job seekers can build career pathways, perhaps beginning as a Health Support Worker to work towards becoming a biostatistician or training as an Enrolled Nurse before undertaking postgraduate qualifications to become a nurse liaison.
As technology’s role in business increases, so too do occupations emerge that are associated with growing online presence as business models incorporate digital marketing analytics, social media and user experience metrics.
The VET sector offers foundational pathways from Cert II level onwards to develop skills in these professions, such as Digital Media Designer and Marketing Coordinator (both Cert IV).
A number of jobs long popular in industry – such as fundraisers, researchers and research assistants – are still not reflected in ANZSCO, making it difficult for the skills required to perform these roles align with the training to prepare individuals for such jobs. Improving data around these occupations will help define training and education that meets labour demand.
Digital technologies are impacting all areas of the economy, but arguably none more rapidly than in financial services and energy industries. Digital frontiers require risk analysts, regulatory specialists and energy auditors, amongst other occupations.
Many regulatory professionals of the future workforce will get their career started in VET offerings like the Diploma of Integrated Risk on the path to employment as a Risk Management Coordinator; or a Diploma of Security Risk Management qualifying a trainee as a Security Risk Consultant.
Sustainability Engineering and Trades
In this cluster of occupations some of the key economic drivers of sustainability and renewable energy that are shaping high-growth prospects for the future economy are identified.
Wind Turbine Technicians will likely get their start with a Cert IV in Large Scale Wind Generation – Electrical. Electrical technicians that want to work as solar panel installers can begin with a Cert II as an Electrotechnology Career Start Trainee and as opportunities grow in sustainability, find their career path moves towards renewable energy technology industries.
The Jobs and Education Data Infrastructure (JEDI) project entails another data science-driven approach to analysing a wide range of labour market, skills and education data. JEDI uses these data sources to identify what an individual’s skills in their current or previous employment are skills transferrable to future occupations. Along with providing information on skill transferability, JEDI also identifies VET courses that can be taken to upskill or reskill before transitioning to new career opportunities requiring higher (or different) qualifications.
Together, these threads of information intertwine to provide a single, comprehensive source of up-to-date information to jobseekers and prospective trainees alike in the Australian Skills Classification. It enables the NSC to provide information that is timely and accessible and capable of helping individuals and organisations better understand the needs of an economy undergoing rapid change.
The core product of JEDI is the Australian Skills Classification and a tool with which individuals can explore transferability within and between jobs and qualifications with reference to 600 unique skills profiles that have been developed to identify occupations in the Australian labour market.
By using the Skills Match tool on the Job Outlook website, individuals can input their previous and current career information, review the skills that these roles qualify them with and identify what capabilities they possess in their current roles that can be applied in other occupations.
Enhancing the broad opportunities available in VET
These key projects of the National Skills Commission are set to serve the VET sector and the thousands of job seekers in the training and labour markets well. By using cutting-edge technologies to identify where opportunities are arising and where existing jobs are changing to meet growing demand for new skills, the Emerging Occupations and JEDI projects are key resources for employers, employees, educators and trainers alike to take advantage of in preparing for a technology driven future of work.