August 2023 Employment Market Update

As we roll in to the 2nd month of the 2023/2024 financial year, we are seeing economic and employment conditions are fixed in what could possibly be described as a bit of a “holding pattern”. Jobs data for June 2023 saw an increase in jobs created, but SEEK figures for the same month definitely show less roles being listed as advertised. The unemployment remained fairly stable in July.

With interest rates on the rise and cost of living pressure compounding conditions for everyday Australians, it would be easy to assume that more people would be seeking new employment, and perhaps a pay rise. However, we are seeing many job seekers exercise caution around moving companies, as they don’t want to get stuck having joined a new employer and possibly end up being a victim of the “last in, first out” scenario.

So, what else are we seeing in the employment market in August 2023?

  • Employers are taking longer to make decisions about who they want to hire
  • Job Seekers with great skills and relevant industry experience often have multiple employment offers and still very much in demand
  • Applications “per job” are up, but this does not necessarily represent an increase in quality applicants
  • Flexibility is still key. This is one of the key things job seekers are looking for in a post covid world. Often that is the opportunity to access a hybrid work model, but this looks different for each job seeker. The article from Oxygen listed below, has some insights on what employers are offering in this space **
  • The market is very sensitive. Job seekers, and employers, are riding the wave of an unpredictable market and responding in kind. Interest rate hikes, inflation figures and jobs numbers and all having an impact on business confidence, and yet businesses still need great staff to be productive. It’s a fine balance!
  • Skills shortages continue to abound for specialist skillsets. Australian Industry group research suggested 90% of businesses expect to be affected by staffing shortages in 2023. *
  • Pressure for organisations to respond to skills shortages with higher wages continues to build, some reports show employers have the intention to increase wages in 2023, but whether that becomes a reality remains to be seen.

For more information on what’s happening in the market, and what this means for you as an Employer or JobSeeker, reach out to our team at