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The Boating industry involves several industry sectors, including manufacturing, maintenance, tourism and transport.

Sectors in the industry

  • Boat building, repair and mechanical servicing
  • Marina services
  • Boat operations
  • Tourism

Employer profile for the industry

The industry is dominated by small businesses operating around the coastal and inland waterways of Australia.

Much of the industry operates around marine facilities such as marinas, slipways, boatbuilding and storage facilities and charter bases in both tourist destinations and ‘out of the way’ locations.

The Australian boating industry employs over 29,000 people across more than more than 2,500 businesses. 

Australia is a world leader in the design of large, high-speed, multi-hull aluminium vessels.  

International marine tourism and recreational activities are other major areas of economic activity.

Typical features of the workforce

  • 91% of Vehicle trimmers work full-time and almost 94% of boat builders are employed full-time
  • Almost all ‘trimmers’ hold a Certificate III or IV qualification
  • The most common level of educational attainment for Boat Builders and Shipwrights is Year 12
  • Most people who work in the industry are passionate about boating, the sea and waterways
  • Women represent less than 20% of the workforce
  • The average age of the workforce is 30 - 45 years of age.

Source: Skills for Australia


There has been a decline in the demand for boat building but there is constant innovation in boat building technology.

Roles, skills development and training need to be constantly updated to keep up with the changing industry environment.

Jobs in Demand

Marine Trimmers, Marine Technicians, Boat Servicing Technicians, Boat Builder and Repairers have been identified as being in skill shortage on the Skill Shortage List Australia, from the Australian Government Department of Jobs and Small Business.

Licensed occupations and registrations

There are a wide range of licensing requirements across Australia and the states and territories for a number of occupations in this industry.

The Australian Maritime Safety Authority is responsible for the safety of vessels and the seafarers who are operating in the domestic commercial industry.

State and territory governments also have regulation and licencing requirements. You can find more information from the links provided below.

NSW Maritime Safety
NT Marine Safety
QLD Maritime Safety
SA Boat and Marine Safety
TAS Marine and Safety
VIC Maritime Safety
WA Marine Safety

Work Health and Safety (WHS) is important in all workplaces. Safe Work Australia provides links to all state and territory information.

Key Occupations

Boat Building and Repairer

Marine Mechanic

Boat Trimmer

This industry is positioned in the following groups


Automotive & Boating

Work Type

Practical & Manual

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Career Pathways

Boating has career pathways from Certificate II through to Diploma. Look at the Automotive, Metal & Engineering and Martime Industry Job Pathway Charts to see what is of interest.

Job Pathway Charts

MyGain - YouTube Channel

Watch videos on apprentices in various industries and their rewarding experiences doing an apprenticeship.

Wooden boat being repaired

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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.

Use Google to search for the associations and organisations listed below. 


  • Skills for Australia
  • IBSA Manufacturing
  • Australian Industry Standards
  • Boating Industries Alliance Australia
  • NSW and QLD Boating Industry Association
  • Boating Industry Association of Victoria
  • Marine Queensland
  • Boating Industry Association WA
  • Superyacht-Australia
  • Australian Shipbuilders Association  
  • Australian Ship Repairers Group
  • Marina Industries Association
  • Department of Industry

Careers Sites