15 of the Most Stable Jobs Over the Last 25 Years

Most indemand jobs Australia

As technology and society change, so too does the demand for different roles and industries. That said, though, the need for some jobs has stayed consistent in the last 25 or so years.

“Some roles such as automotive trades, like mechanics, labourers, electricians and those in road transport, like drivers, remain highly sought-after, year on year,” says Stephen Tuffley, Sales and Service Director of job listing site SEEK. “These are well-established industries and roles that are not greatly impacted by external economic and societal changes such as the pandemic, lockdowns and changes in the economy.”

A recent report by SEEK found that the number one most common occupation for Australians for more than two decades was sales assistant, often the face of our retail experience. The list of top jobs for Australians over the past 20 years has shown that one of the biggest shifts has been the rise of workers stepping into care-centric roles as our population has grown.

While primary and secondary teachers always ranked highly throughout the years, childcare workers first reached the top 20 occupations in 2016 and is now the seventh most common occupation in the country. Notably, a dedicated occupation for aged and disabled care workers wasn’t even included in the census in 2001. Today, it’s the fourth most common occupation in Australia.

working from home after covid
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“The roles that have seen the most notable growth have been those in the care and support services, such as nurses, aged care support, childcare and community workers,” says Tuffley. “Workers for these jobs are in hugely high demand, as our population continues to grow and age, though they are often some of the lowest paid, meaning that it’s difficult to attract new workers to the sector.”

Also interesting to see in the list is the direct impact of our society’s growing focus on wellbeing and fitness. The number of fitness instructors in Australia has more than doubled since 2001. We’re also clearly ordering more takeaway, with the number of delivery drivers having increased by 42% in the past 22 years.

Back in 2001, ‘computer professionals’ were the ninth most common occupation. Today, the occupation isn’t even included in the census. The highest-ranked role like it is “software and applications programmer”, which comes at number 18 in 2021’s census.

Other jobs that have decreased in demand in the past 25 years are roles such as seamstresses, keyboard operators and bank workers, says Truffley. “Automation and technology has played a large hand in this, reducing the amount of human labour required in these jobs.”

So, with that in mind, how do the top 15 jobs in 2021 and 2001 compare, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics?

2001 2021
1 Sales Assistants Sales Assistants (General)
2 Cleaners Registered Nurses
3 Secretaries and Personal Assistants General Clerks
4 General Clerks Aged and Disabled Carers
5 Shop Managers Retail Managers
6 Registered Nurses Primary School Teachers
7 Storepersons Child Carers
8 Computing Professionals Truck Drivers
9 Receptionists Receptionists
10 Sales Representatives Accountants
11 Primary School Teachers Secondary School Teachers
12 Truck Drivers Commercial Cleaners
13 Accountants Storepersons
14 Secondary School Teachers Advertising, Public Relations and Sales Managers
15 Office Managers Electricians

And here are the top 20 roles listed on SEEK in February 2023:

  1. Administrative Assistants
  2. Aged and Disability Support
  3. Warehousing, Storage and Distribution
  4. Automative Trades
  5. Childcare and Outside School Hours Care
  6. Retail Assistants
  7. Chefs/Cooks
  8. Nursing – Aged Care
  9. Sales Representatives/Consultants
  10. Road Transport
  11. Physiotherapy, OT and Rehabilitation
  12. Waiting Staff
  13. Labourers
  14. Mining – Engineering and Maintenance
  15. Management
  16. Electricians
  17. Psychology, Counselling and Social Work
  18. Management – Store
  19. Bar and Beverage Staff
  20. Technicians

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