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Employers' Recruitment Insights

Recruitment Experiences and Outlook Survey

The National Skills Commission surveys employers to learn about their recruitment needs and to better connect job seekers with employment opportunities. Insights from employers are used to develop resources to gain insights into labour market conditions, and for job seekers wanting to understand what employers are looking for.

For more information about the survey or any of the resources below, please call 1800 059 439 or email employmentpathwaysanalysis@skillscommission.gov.au.

Recruitment Experiences and Outlook Survey: concepts, methods, and questionnaire

For more information on the survey methodology, key concepts used in the survey and to view the questionnaire, see the paper:

REOS concepts methods and questionnaire (PDF) (329.8KB)

Key indicators

51 per cent of employers were recruiting in December 2021. 57 per cent of recruiting employers had difficulty. 26 per cent of employers expect to increase staffing levels in the next three months.

Note: Recruitment activity refers to the proportion of employers either currently recruiting or who had recruited in the previous month. The 'Recruitment difficulty rate' is the proportion of recruiting employers who experienced difficulty hiring. 'Expect to increase staff' refers to the proportion of employers who expect to increase staffing numbers over the next three months.

Latest data from the Recruitment Experiences and Outlook Survey

A report from the Recruitment Experiences and Outlook Survey, highlighting key findings and trends in recruitment activity, recruitment difficulty and future staffing expectations, is published monthly.

Impacts of COVID-19 on businesses

The impacts of COVID-19 on businesses report provides detailed insights into how and to what extent businesses have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, and how this has changed over time.

Impacts of COVID-19 on businesses (PDF) (553.1KB)

Employers' perspectives on recruitment difficulty

The Employers' perspectives on recruitment difficulty report provides detailed analysis on recruitment difficulty - particularly over the March to July 2021 period. Included in this report are qualitative insights from employers comparing their most recent recruitment to recruitment conducted prior to the COVID-19 pandemic in Australia.

Employers' perspectives on recruitment difficulty (PDF) (567.6KB)

Trends in vacancies and recruitment in Capital Cities and Rest of State areas

The report below outlines key trends across time in internet vacancies and recruitment difficulty, focusing on differences between Capital Cities and Rest of State areas.

Annual reports

TheEmployers' Insights on the Australian Labour Market - 2020 Data Report and the associated Excel data file present results from the REOS and its predecessor survey based on information collected from employers throughout 2020. Data items include the extent of the impact of COVID-19 on businesses, the types of impacts that COVID-19 had on businesses, employers' staffing actions, whether employers recruited or had recruitment difficulty, and what recruitment methods employers used.

The Survey of Employers’ Recruitment Experiences was run prior to 2020 and provides information based on insights from more than 10,000 employers each year.

Previous reports on the Survey of Employers’ Recruitment Experiences are available in the following links:

Understanding the impacts of COVID-19 on the jobs market

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on the jobs market, for employers, workers and job seekers. For further research and insights on the labour market, and advice and support for job seekers, visit the COVID-19 Information page.

Information, resources and tips for career advisors and job seekers

Using data from the Recruitment Experiences and Outlook Survey and other sources, the National Skills Commission has developed information and resources for job seekers:

Employers’ tips for finding a job

  • • Keep an open mind and be as flexible as possible. Don’t restrict your job search to familiar industries. While you may need to compromise in the short-term, every job will help you gain new skills and experiences.

  • • Be proactive in seeking employment by approaching employers directly (e.g. by email or by phone), checking social media, including jobs groups on Facebook, and reaching out through your network of family and friends.

  • • Frequently check as many recruitment websites as you can, as well as the websites of big employers, as this is how many employers advertise opportunities.

  • • You need an excellent résumé and job application that is short, gives examples, is free from spelling and grammatical errors and tailored to the job and the business.

  • • Highlight your transferable skills and experience when applying for a job, giving examples from your work history when you can and also explain how your skills make you the right fit for that role.

  • • Be prepared for the interview by practicing interview questions, preparing some questions about the job and business, explain what skills you will bring to the job, and plan what you will wear.

Below, you can find advice for all job seekers, as well as specific advice for groups including youth, mature age workers, and retrenched workers.

Presentations for career advisors

Youth and students

Mature age

Workers facing retrenchment


Research reports

Recruitment perceptions and trends

Other research and information

Posters for job seekers

The National Skills Commission produces a range of posters for job seekers. For printable copies, please click the link below:

Supporting data

Employment Projections

Where will the jobs be in the future? The National Skills Commission projects employment growth over the next five years by region, industry, and occupation.

Vacancy Report

Online job advertising levels and trends by region, occupation and skill level are detailed in the monthly vacancy report.

Employers’ Recruitment Insights

The National Skills Commission surveys businesses to monitor recruitment conditions across Australia and provide insights into what employers are looking for.

Workforce Shortages

The National Skills Commission carries out research to identify workforce shortages at the state, territory and/or national level for around 80 occupations.