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Australians upskilling to make the most of COVID-19 lockdown as more jobs advertised online


A new survey has revealed Aussies are spending more time learning online and fixing their resumes during the COVID-19 lockdown, with many anxious about career security.

Australians are spending the COVID-19 isolation upskilling and perfecting their resumes with the country’s professionals anxious about job prospects and career security.

Images of lines of people snaking around Centrelink offices shocked the nation with the global pandemic causing unprecedented job losses but Aussies are increasingly turning to online learning in a bid to secure their next career.

Data released by LinkedIn has revealed 44 per cent of respondents intended on spending more time learning online in the two weeks following the survey, which ran from April 1 to 7.

A quarter of respondents said they planned on spending time fixing up their resumes and online profiles, and 27 per cent said they planned on increasing their time spent looking for work.

The data also showed confidence was low among professionals many of whom were anxious about their finances, job prospects and job security, with 36 per cent reporting a drop in wages, 52 per cent reducing their personal spending and 55 per cent expecting the number of available roles to decrease.

Dianne Fletcher, employment CEO of training provider Sarina Russo, told News Corp there were still a lot of jobs currently available and prospective employees should look at adapting and upgrading their existing skills.

Ms Fletcher said opportunities were available for a wide range of skill sets, including those with experience in the administration who could become “highly competitive” in logistics by upskilling with an appropriate Certificate III and those with customer service skills who could make the transition into call centre work.

“Often it’s about using your existing skills, but thinking about applying them in a different way,” she said.

She said it was “vital” people tailor their resume to each position and look at how they can demonstrate their agility, productivity, time management and communication skills.

“At this point, employers are looking for the most productive worker,” Ms Fletcher said.

“It’s highlighting those sorts of expertise that can be recognised.

But more importantly, thinking this might not be a person reading your resume, it might be a computer.

“So what is this job really looking for and how do I make sure my resume stands out from the crowd?” she said.

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Just two of the top 10 job types being advertised now are in the healthcare field, with IT, sales and business administration workers also in demand.

The Federal Government Jobs Hub shows the top 10 occupations being advertised online each week, which last week was topped by registered nurses, at 459 roles of the 11,364 jobs advertised nationally.

It overtook software and application programmer (278 job advertisements) for the top spot, which it held the previous week, while sales representative was the third most-advertised role (257 roles).

Others in the list include accountants, specialist managers, advertising/public relations/sales managers, and organisation analysts.

GP was the other healthcare role to registered nurses to be listed in the top 10.

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The data is sourced from several online job boards but does not list all vacancies available in Australia, with some employers using their own websites to advertise positions, while others are advertised in print and social media.

Hiring platform Shortlyster chief executive and founder Rudy Crous said unlike in the global financial crisis, when advertised positions declined across the board, there were many sectors that were recruiting skilled workers now more than ever.

“Skills are transferable,” he said.

“(Jobs Hub) is a great initiative to try and catch where jobs are posted and where candidates go to get work, but it doesn’t solve the problem of helping candidates to be matched to roles that they might not have considered before.

“A lot of people furloughed, retrenched and laid off have never been in the market to have to think about that.”

He said aside from platforms such as Shortlyster, which enables jobseekers to fill out a profile and be matched to roles based on their soft and technical skills, candidates needed to understand their abilities beyond their qualifications to sell themselves in job applications. “Receptionists and EAs are applying for healthcare jobs and caring for the elderly – these jobs have a lot to do with bedside manner, and those characteristics can be quite similar to that of EAs and receptionists,” he said.

Story: Cara Jenkin and Chloe Lyons, News Corp
Photo: Andrea Piacquadio


This article originally appeared on the author’s LinkedIn page.