Three in four say Australia is not delivering on the job market

New research has revealed three in four Aussies think local workers are better off seeking opportunities abroad, as Australia is falling short on delivering on salaries, work-life balance, opportunities and innovation in the job market.

The findings come from a survey of a nationally representative panel of 1000 Australian adults, commissioned by international money transfer service WorldFirst, to gauge whether we may see future growth in the number of Aussie expats working overseas.

Respondents were asked what Australia is poor at delivering in the job market, and would these factors be strong enough reasons to seek opportunities overseas? The survey revealed that Aussies have long borne the brunt of our average 2 per cent wage growth: 49 per cent of respondents said salaries are too low to meet the cost of living, and 45 per cent said minimum wages are too low.


The pressure to work overtime was revealed as the second most problematic factor in our job market, nominated by 37 per cent of respondents. An equal third (35 per cent) of respondents believe that the opportunities for growth and promotion are slim, and that some of Australia’s industries and services are not progressive enough.

A third (33 per cent) of respondents said our long commutes in metropolitan areas are another negative factor that Australia has not resolved. Lack of diversity in the job market was of a concern for 27 per cent of respondents, and 28 per cent of respondents believed there are low opportunities for senior roles for women.

When asked if the above factors were strong enough reasons for Aussies to seek work opportunities overseas, 74 per cent of respondents said yes.

Patrick Liddy, Head of Foreign Exchange at WorldFirst, said, “While Australian wages have remained fairly stagnant, the cost of living has risen significantly over the last several years – from our property prices and hence our mortgage repayments, to petrol, household energy and insurances. As a result, if Australia doesn’t address some of these problems, we may very well experience a new wave of professionals considering opportunities abroad.”

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