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Construction, Plumbing and Services

To be employed in the construction, plumbing and services sectors, starting as an apprentice or trainee is a great way to get your foot in the door. Even with the rise and fall with the building and construction industry there will always be work, as there are so many different pathways you can take advantage of. You have the options of running your own business, managing large infrastructure projects and even becoming CEO of a large construction company!

What does this industry cover?

The push to reduce waste, and to have more sustainable living and working environments, has meant that there are changes happening in the construction industry as a whole.

New technology includes Building Information Modelling (BIM) which can give users 3D imagery and tracks the construction process from start to finish. Pre-fabrication, and smart and green technologies will all require new skills and will create job opportunities.

Most occupations in this industry are listed on the Australian Apprenticeship Priority List. They include: Bricklayer, Cabinet Maker, Capenter, Carpenter and Joiner, Fibrous Plaster, Joiner, Painter, Roof Tiler, Signwriter, Solid Plaster, Stonemason, and Wall and Floor Tiler.

Job hunting preparation

Skills that you may need to work in this industry include: working in confined spaces, working at heights, having good strength and balance, and being able to read technical drawings. Make sure you have a white card so that you are ready to work on site.

Large companies normally recruit once or twice a year so it is important that you set yourself up with job alerts for the companies you might like to work for. Smaller businesses often don’t have the time or resources to advertise so contacting the employer directly, such as door knocking, is a great way to secure an apprenticeship.

With increased technology and automation, new skills are required including digital, analytical and software skills.

There is a shortage of skilled tradespeople in these industries.

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Information for further research

Industry information is published by peak level associations, government and major employers. Accessing industry association sites, including member lists, is a good way of building up an understanding of an industry. Visiting employer websites and looking for careers or employment menus helps identify how employers recruit and the skills they are recruiting.

Employment and wage data for this industry

Apprenticeships Employment Size

This is a large industry for Australian Apprenticeship commencements. In the year to September 2022, commencements were: 30 565

Source: VOCSTATS, extracted on 11/4/2023AATIS analysis.

Commencements Change

Commencements in the year to September 2022 in this industry have remained stable, compared with the previous year.

Source: VOCSTATS, extracted on 11/4/2023AATIS analysis.

Apprentice Employment Outcomes

For Australian Apprentice graduates from this industry, employment outcomes are high.

Source: NCVER National Student Outcomes Survey, 2020, unpublished. AATIS analysis.

Industry Employment Size

This is a large sized industry compared with other Australian industries.

Source: National Skills Commission, 2022. AATIS analysis.

Industry Employment Change

In the next 5 years, change in employment in this industry is predicted to increase.

Source: National Skills Commission, 2022. AATIS analysis.

Industry Wage

The average wage of all employees in this industry is medium to high.

Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2022. AATIS analysis.

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