There is a common misconception that rural work typically involves driving a tractor or chasing a sheep through a dusty paddock, and while there is strong growth in agribusiness and some parts of the agricultural sector, the fact is that the minority of jobs in rural Victoria involve agriculture,
Rural Victoria experienced an impressive 15% jump in jobs between 2011 and 2016 – from 234,300 to 269,722 with strong growth in a range of sectors:
- Health Care & Social Assistance,
- Agriculture, Forestry & Fishing,
- Accommodation & Food Services
- Education & Training
- Administrative & Support Services
Federal Government data showed almost 6000 regional and rural jobs were advertised online in August 2018.
Tourism alone generates 8% of all jobs in rural Victoria – and is forecast to continue to grow as more visitors seek to spend time beyond Melbourne’s boundaries.
There is a range of skills in hot demand in rural Victoria, including trainee and apprentice roles for trades engaged in construction projects across the State, IT, sales and management skills to work with rapidly growing hi-tech farm and manufacturing businesses and many jobs in the health and education areas.
In addition, the 2016 census identified that 26.8% of workers in rural areas are over 55 – well above the state average of 18.7%, with a host of opportunities for employment and promotion in rural areas set to emerge over the next five years.
The average unemployment rate in rural Victoria is just 4.4%. Rural areas are also considering a range of initiatives to encourage young people in their communities to continue to live locally and pursue work, training and study opportunities.
While there are many jobs around, traditional recruitment websites and newspaper ads don’t appear to be working for many rural employers, with many resorting to other innovative ways to find the staff they need.
The Glenelg Shire Council recently released a website called ‘This is Portland’ promoting job and lifestyle opportunities in the Portland area and other councils are also looking to grow awareness through new channels.