The Furnishing industry covers the manufacturing and installation of a diverse array of interior and exterior structures from furniture and furnishings, to kitchens, cabinets, glass, window and doors and interior design, as well as flooring and picture framing.

A growing trend in the furnishing industry has seen collaboration with designers, manufacturers and retailers. Customers are after a personalised service which includes ethical sourcing, sustainable design and living, so are looking for that value-add experience.

What does this industry cover?

Advancements in technology such as 3D printing, new materials such as concrete benchtops, motorised furniture, carbon fibre materials and extra-low voltage electricals, have led to the creation of smart kitchens that offer seamless systems using motion sensors and automation controlled from a smartphone or tablet.

There is a growing demand for hand crafted bespoke furniture products, ecofriendly and smart glass products, and specialised picture framing for art pieces.

Employees in this industry now need to have advanced computer skills to program and maintain equipment such as computer-controlled saws, lasers, shears and presses.

Job hunting preparation

The top priority skills in this sector are: customer service and after sales skills, digital skills including automated design, sustainable business skills, employability skills for work readiness and STEM skills.

Quite a few schools offer VET qualifications in the furnishing sector which enables a pathway into the industry.

The most common apprenticeships in this sector are cabinetmaker, glazier and floor finisher, with product assembler, production manager, production supervisor and interior decorator the most common occupations.

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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 medium industry for Australian Apprenticeship commencements. In the year to September 2019, commencements were: 2452

Source: VOCSTATS, extracted on 14/04/2020. AATIS analysis.

Commencements Change

Commencements in the year to September 2019 in this industry have decreased, compared with the previous year.

Source: VOCSTATS, extracted on 14/04/2020. AATIS analysis.

Apprentice Employment Outcomes

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

Source: NCVER National Student Outcomes Survey, 2017, unpublished. AATIS analysis.

Industry Employment Size

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

Source: Department of Education, Skills and Employment, 2019. AATIS analysis.

Industry Employment Change

Over the past 5 years, change in employment in this industry has remained stable.

Source: Department of Education, Skills and Employment, 2019. AATIS analysis.

Industry Wage

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

Source: Department of Education, Skills and Employment, 2019. AATIS analysis.

Hear about the Furnishing Industry

See more at My Gain

Watch Gabe - Apprentice Upholsterer

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Watch Jack - Apprentice Cabinet Maker

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Watch Nathan - School-based Cabinet Making Apprentice

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Watch Paul - Stegbar Manager

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Watch Sam - Pre-apprenticeship in Furniture Making

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Watch Tyson - Glass & Glazing Apprentice

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