Australia is getting close to the government’s target of 1.2 million technology workers by 2030.
Tech lobby group Tech Council of Australia counted a 935,000-strong tech workforce in February of this year.
During his election campaign, Prime Minister Anthony Albanese adopted the Tech Council ’s target of 1.2 million tech workers by 2030 – a target ACS said was not ambitious enough given the tech workforce was projected to reach 1.2 million by around 2027 regardless.
The latest figures from the Tech Council – sourced from the Australian Bureau of Statistics – indicate an eight per cent increase in the number of tech jobs in the past year, double the growth rate of all other jobs.
If that rate continues, the tech workforce would hit 1.2 million some time in 2026. Even with the more modest growth of all other jobs (four per cent) Australia’s tech workforce would comfortably reach 1.2 million by 2030.
“If the tech workforce were an industry, it would be the seventh largest employer in Australia,” Industry and Science Minister Ed Husic said in a press release.
“Boosting the number of tech jobs in our workforce is not a ‘nice to have – they're incredibly vital to building stronger, competitive Australian businesses in the long run.”
Indeed, most (62 per cent) tech workers have jobs outside of the tech industry in sectors like retail, finance, and mining.
This means that layoffs that plagued tech companies in the early part of this year have had a limited effect on the overall number of tech workers in Australia.
The Tech Council report claims that for every job lost in the tech sector, 20 more tech roles have been created elsewhere.
Average salaries for IT jobs continue to be high compared to other roles with the report finding the average advertised IT salaries in tech companies are second only to CEO and general management roles, coming in at an average of $132,000 a year.
Husic quoted the $132,000 per year number during a press conference on Tuesday, saying tech jobs “are highly sought after … that’s why they pay so well”.
“Being able to train people up for [these jobs] locally is a big priority for the government,” he said.
The Tech Council report does not make it clear how many of the 70,000 additional tech workers Australia added from 2022-23 came from domestic pipelines and how many were imported from overseas.
Members of the Tech Council include Google, Microsoft, Adobe, Canva, and Telstra.