Engineers can breathe a little easier as signs are showing the job market is stabilising, though mostly on the Eastern seaboard. Department of Employment figures indicate that in each of the first 4 months of 2015, engineering vacancies climbed on an aggregate basis across Australia.
This can be attributed in part to a bonanza of stamp duty gains that has allowed the government to inject $590 million into kick-starting numerous infrastructure projects. It looks like non-residential building activity in particular is building speed and looking to boom.
This good news, coupled with the newly minted legislation allowing the privatisation of electricity assets to free-up funds has led to increased certainty that most of the infrastructure initiatives will be seen through.
This certainty is helping bolster business confidence and growth leading to greater investment in staff.
Since the start of this year workers have begun to see some positives take place.
Employers are increasing their take-in of permanent and temporary staff
Workers are garnering good salary negation results
New bonus structures
Hydraulics and HVAC Engineers
Revit drafters and modellers
Mid to senior structural engineers
An upcoming fundamental review of the Building Professionals Act 2005 may have an impact on engineers, especially those working in NSW. It will seek to provide recommendations on improving building regulation and certification arrangements. Sydney is expected to maintain high levels of civil infrastructure facility work (not mining though).
Sydney is seeing a surge in transport projects:
Parramatta Light Rail
Rapid bus transit, healthcare & roads projects
The government is yet to reveal the extent of their transport project intentions for Queensland. This, plus the cancelling of the Arrow Energy liquefied natural gas project and Dudgeon point Coal Terminal has led to a lack of confidence and much uncertainty as to the near term future of the capital program.
However, counteracting this, continued rising approvals in apartment tower design and construction look to keep going through the roof. Also, civil infrastructure facility work (unfortunately not mining though) looks to pick up. The dollar value of work done in QLD is estimated to rise by 30%!
The cancellation of the East/West Link Project has left a vacancy in Victoria’s short-term infrastructure program which is forecast to lower their capital spending on infrastructure by $400 million this new financial year. Their focus will be on upgrading country roads, widening Tullamarine Freeway, removing level crossing and eventually building a rail link.
Work is slumping back in this state.
A few smaller infrastructure initiatives along with civil infrastructure facility works (not mining) are raising employment prospects slightly.