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Talented workforce

Our greatest asset is our people. Our diverse, highly skilled and multilingual workforce is one of the most educated in the world.

Australian workers are highly skilled, thanks to an excellent education system, quality scientific research institutions, and availability of specialised training services.

And we’re globally connected.

Around one in three Australians were born overseas, putting Australia well ahead of the OECD average, and above Canada, Germany, the UK, the US and France for cultural diversity. With a high proportion of skilled migrants, Australia’s workforce has a wide range of language and culturally appropriate business skills that give Australia the edge in cross-border business.

Companies that relocate to Australia can choose from a pool of digital-savvy, culturally sensitive and multilingual talent. You’ll find employees to support business innovation, service customers around the world and help you expand into growing markets.

of workforce has a tertiary qualification

Almost half of Australia’s workforce has a tertiary qualification, meaning a diploma or higher

Group of students working in lab

Putting energy into services

Approximately 78% of Australia’s workforce is employed in the services sector. In some sectors, more than 60% of the workforce holds a tertiary qualification. High-skill sectors include scientific and technical services, financial and insurance services, and health and life sciences.

Prioritising women in STEM

A talented workforce is a diverse one. To supercharge our national prosperity, Australia is prioritising the talent, skills and diverse perspectives of women in STEM. In particular, Australia’s tech sector will need to attract 6.5 million new workers over the next four years – and we’re on a mission to ensure a large majority of them are women. We've joined forces with global diversity and inclusion consultancy The Dream Collective to help make this vision a reality. The SheDares initiative offers a free online learning experience that equips women to pivot into the tech industry. It’s also connecting talented women from overseas with exciting opportunities in Australia’s fast-growing tech sector.


The Superstars of STEM program, an initiative of Science and Technology Australia, is working to smash gender stereotypes and elevate the public profile of women in STEM. The aim of the program is boost the visibility of women in STEM – based on the premise that ‘you cannot be what you cannot see’. This Government-funded program provides high quality media training and networking opportunities to build participants’ professional profiles and boost their career success.

Scientists in lab

Australia’s workforce at a glance

  • Ranked in the top 10, globally, for the availability of skilled labour
  • A culturally diverse workforce, with approximately 30% of workers born overseas
  • Sustained periods where labour-productivity growth exceeds growth in real wages
  • A multicultural population, where 2.1 million Australians also speak an Asian language and 1.3 million also speak a European language
Percentage of employed persons with tertiary education by industry
table of skilled workforce and innovation indicators

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