How is the job market in Perth?

As we navigate this difficult time of COVID-19, we will be posting regular updates on how the Perth job market is recovering. Click the video below to watch our latest update for 2022 and click "subscribe to updates" to get alerted when we release our next video. So, how is the WA job market and how is the Perth job market in 2022?

Perth job market update | Australia's job market is booming!

The Australian job market is booming and we now have more than 13 million people employed - this is the highest ever!

In comparison, in 2012, we had just 11 million people employed across the country. This number has steadily increased every year until 2020 when COVID-19 hit our shores.

The decline was steep but short and we quickly began to recover the job losses thanks to the Federal Government's massive financial support program. Not only have we fully recovered the number of jobs lost, but we are now back to the same job market pattern we saw before COVID-19.

This is the WA job market update we were hoping for!

Australia's job market is booming | How is the job market in Perth?

Decade-low unemployment

Our employment rate does not follow the same pattern as the unemployment graph, as it is affected by other factors such as net immigration and the participation rate.

The overall Australian unemployment rate is now at a decade low of just 4.2% - breaking this down to a state / territory level:

  • SA has the highest unemployment rate at 5%
  • Followed by QLD at 4.3%
  • Then VIC at 4.2%
  • Next is WA at 4.1%
  • Then TAS at 3.9%
  • NSW is the third lowest at 3.7%
  • The NT is the second lowest at 3.5%
  • Finally, the ACT has the lowest unemployment rate at 3%

A 4-5% unemployment rate is close to the natural unemployment rate, so it will be hard to increase the number of people employed.

Decade low unemployment | How is the job market in Perth?

WA job market update | How is the WA job market?

Let's look at how the job market is in WA and how the job market is in Perth.

Every morning since 2008 and up until today, I have recorded the number of job ads posted on SEEK for Perth so I can provide WA job market updates.

As you can see in the graph below, we have had two peaks in the number of job ads posted.

  • The first was in 2008 just before the GFC
  • The second was at the height of the mining boom

The dips you can see every year occur over Christmas and the summer holidays where the ads start to decline in November and rise again in early January.

Let's have a look at COVID-19, how it affected the WA job market.

When COVID-19 seriously hit Australia, in the span of just five weeks from the 13th of March to the 20th of April, the number of job ads posted for Perth dropped by 63%. This was a massive drop. It was the same percentage drop we saw during the GFC. However, during the GFC, this occurred over six months, whereas it only took five weeks from the first COVID-19 lockdown.

After this massive drop in job ads, we had an amazing recovery.

So, how is the job market in Perth now?

WA job market update | How is the job market in Perth?

Job ads posted on SEEK for Perth | How is the job market in Perth?

Job ads posted on SEEK for Perth | Perth job market update 2022

Perth job market update 2022 | How is the job market in Perth?

From the 1st of May to the 1st of September 2020, in just four months, we've recovered all the ads lost. In comparison, the recovery from the GFC took two and a half years.

Additionally, not only have we recovered all the jobs lost, but the number of job ads has continued to increase and there are now 21,000 ads posted on SEEK for Perth. This means there has been an increase of more than 450% since the start of the pandemic.

This is a job boom, like never before in the history of Western Australia, even higher than the peak of the boom before the GFC and at the end of the mining boom.

We have only had a few hiccups where the market has wobbled a little because of COVID-19 community transmissions, which triggered snap lockdowns, but because these lockdowns were short, the market quickly recovered and continued the positive trend.

So, how is the job market in Perth and what does the future look like?

Well, COVID-19 is in WA and it will affect the job market for a while. The growth in the number of ads posted on SEEK has stalled, maybe has declined a little bit, but it's still a very tight market and it is expected to stay this for the remainder of the year.

This means that many employers in WA will still struggle to source new employees, however, for the job hunters, and for the people thinking about entering the job market, this is great news as there will be more opportunities to choose from.

Perth job market update 2022 | How is the job market in Perth?

Christian Madsen - Managing Director at 11 Recruitment
Christian Madsen
Managing Director
11 Recruitment

Helpful tips & advice

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  • Hi Christian, thank you for sharing your insight into the job market particularly in WA. It was major relief when you highlighted that the recovery was V-shape. Lost of jobs were equal to GFC, but the recovery rate was better, so, great sigh of relief. Thank you.

  • Max Crostella says:

    Good research Christian.

  • Hi Christian, thanks for sharing these valuable insights. The decline has certainly been felt across all industries. Given the curve dropped so dramatically within 4 weeks – it will be interesting to watch the road to recovery and if this will take 4 weeks or equally long as GFC recovery. Thanks again for sharing!

    • Michael Taub says:

      Hi Meike,
      Thanks for your comment. Keep a lookout for Christian’s next video which should be released pretty soon. That will help answer some of your questions.

  • Hi
    Do you have this for the rest of Australia

    • Michael Taub says:

      Hi Lindsay,

      Thanks for your interest. Currently we only provide this analysis for Western Australia job market.

  • Hi Christian, very interesting thank you for sharing.

  • Gary Conigrave says:

    Thanks, It’s always better to know…about these things anyway.

  • Warren Niblock Bell says:

    Thanks Christian,

    Apprieciate the email and information.

    Kind Regards,


  • Petra Cipriani says:

    Very interesting to see that my sector education and training increasing in job demands

  • Veronica Kumasan says:

    Hi, Christian,
    This is good for many who seek job on line. It will assist and motivate their understanding on how the jobs in Australia are marketable in various Industries.

  • Very well summarised Christian, I am intrigued to know if your prepared to forecast how the jobs market will be from supply, & services through to retail for the remainder of 2020

  • Alexander says:

    All I have seen and heard on the news about massive lay offs in all secures of all busineses

  • Great analysis of job market in WA,we hope for better numbers with the expectation on new mining development planned for next year. Thanks for sharing Christian!

  • Christian, brilliant work & appreciate your sincere views & stats on industries in WA, I would say that we are on an upwards trend with some bearish in betweens but overall there is some growth in WA.

    • Glad to hear you liked it Richard. Yes, the market is positive. We have more vacant jobs than we have had in the past 5 years.

  • Thank you Christian. It’s very interesting information. I was just searching for this information today! By the way, do you have any survey for the other states as well? How about Linkedin figures? Kind regards, Gilani

    • Hi Gilani, Glad to hear you found it interesting. If you tell me exactly what type of sections on SEEK you are interested in then I will try to include them in the next update.

  • I’ve been looking job for 3 months and haven’t got any, this is the job market in WA Perth.

    • Sorry to hear Indra you have been looking for this long. If you have done it already I suggest you download some of our free e-books on how to write “Great Cover Letters” and “7 top CV improvements”. Hope they will assist you a little.

  • Thanks for the update Christian. Always very informative, though not good news for WA this time. Would you be able to do another analysis of the eastern states?

  • Christian Rasmussen says:

    Thanks Christian, some good insights into the current WA job market.

  • Wow.. Christian .. great analysis.. Request you to please do the same for Melbourne. I am new to Australia. Currently in Perth, but looking out for jobs both in Melbourne /Perth

  • Thanks for the market analysis Christian. I’m suspecting more blood on the streets as the Banking RC recommendations unfold. I was in that industry for many years and feel for my friends & ex-colleagues who are facing an uncertain future.

    • One solution for the job hunters is to sharpen up their CV hunting skills including their CV and Cover Letter. As an example, 90% of the job applications I see are poor in presentation and job match. They are not even in the running for the job. Hence, I just launched a CV writing service to assist applicants getting closer to a job interview.

      • Very interesting and thanks for sharing your insight, Christian!!!
        How can I reach out to you if I would like to benefit from your CV writing professional services in Agile space? Thanks

  • John Salat says:

    Hi Christian,
    Very interesting numbers. I am following both seek and also Linkedin.

    • God to hear John you found the numbers interesting. I will keep you posted next time I update the video.

  • Great insights Christian. Some promising developments ahead for 2019 it appears in WA.

  • Hi Christian, great work on the numbers, I love numbers! I’m just interested to understand if you are able to involve any LinkedIn stats in this mix. I believe a lot of people are moving from Seek to LinkedIn for their hiring and job search needs in the professional sector. That dynamic is the biggest question I have over the numbers. Perhaps it makes the increase in job ads on Seek all the more impressive. Thanks in advance. Richard

    • Hi Richard, I do not include LinkedIn in the stats as they are not available. However, LinkedIn has a very small marketshare and very few (almost none) advertise on LinkedIn alone. Everyone advertise on SEEK if they advertise…

  • Peter Banovich says:

    Interesting analysis Christian, thanks.

    • Good to hear Peter – Let me know if there are any SEEK categories you would like to explore more for you.

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