Will I get a job?



Over 20% of 2014 dental graduates missed out on a full time job – December 2014

Australian Dental Association calls on government to review the dental workforce – March 2014

1 in 6 Australian dental graduates seeking a full-time job – February 2014

Dental Relocation and Infrastructure Support Scheme (DRISS) – could this be the answer to the rural dentist shortage? – April 2013

Dental graduates 2012 – did they get jobs? – January 2013

Australian Dental Association Call to Action on Dental Workforce Oversupply – August 2012

Dentistry summary:

20.4% of the dental graduates from Australian universities were unable to find a job within 4 months of graduation at the end of 2014.

In March 2014, the Australian Dental Association and the Australian Dental Students Association ramped up their efforts in lobbying the government to review the oversupply of dentists, which is predicted to continue until 2025 unless action is taken. As they called for a cap of 460 dental graduates, there was a forecast that 620 students would graduate in 2014.

In January 2013, Dr Karin Alexander, national president of the Australian Dental Association was in the media talking about the fact that there was a drop in the full-time employment rate of new graduate dentists. The cohort graduating at the end of 2012 had 83% full time employment, down from 93% in 2012.

Suggestion: Newly graduating dentists might consider more than one part-time position – in January 2013 Dr Alexander noted that there are more part-time positions being advertised. As at early 2015, it is too early to tell how much of an impact the DRISS will have on the dental labour market as the scheme has only been up and running since 2013. 2011 dental graduate Viet Nguyen has said that prospective dentists may need to learn business skills such as internet marketing to be competitive in the jobs market.

Click here for more information about a career in dentistry in Australia. 



Australian dietetics workforce in focus – March 2014

Dietetics summary:

At the time of the 2011 census, of the approximately 6,200 Australians who had a dietetics qualification, only 45% stated that their occupation was a dietitian. It has been stated that “this may be a result of people choosing to work in fields unrelated to their qualification, or people unable to find employment in their chosen field.” There is some uncertainty as to why many dietitians work in other fields.

Click here for more information about a career in dietetics in Australia. 



New medical schools – part of the problem or part of the solution? Q&A with NSW Medical Students’ Council Chair Neel Gobin and Public Relations Officer Christopher Lemon – May 2015

1/6 of 2015 commencing medical students won’t be able to become fully qualified doctors – December 2014

Concerns about a lack of medical training positions in the future – October 2013

2013 international medical graduates from Australian med schools – get in quick for an internship!! – October 2013

Medical Student Action on Training – website – last updated 2013, has since been taken down.

Australia’s Health Workforce Series – Doctors in Focus 2012

Health Workforce 2025: Doctors, nurses and midwives volume 1 – March 2012

Australian Medical Students Association Internship Crisis Update – 2012

Australian Medical Association – Medical Training Crisis Update –  September 2012

Medicine summary:

The Health Workforce 2025 document stated that unless there is national reform, Australia will have a shortage of 2,700 (about 3%) doctors by 2025, suggesting there will be jobs available for doctors in the future in Australia. However, there were issues in 2012 with not enough internships being offered to international students who were graduates of Australian medical schools. In 2012, the (Labor) federal government announced a one-off round of funding for these graduates. The (Coalition) federal government announced a similar round of funding in 2013.

The Australian Medical Association (AMA) has a position statement on forming a National Intern Allocation System (http://ama.com.au/node/7384). Unless there are more government funded internships and  in future years, there is concern that domestic medical students will be competing for internships.

As at late 2013, there were concerns about medical graduates not being able to complete their training to become fully qualified due to a projected shortage of (registrar) training positions. This concern continued in 2014 with the projections showing that as many as 1/6 students commencing medical school in 2015 would not be able to complete their training unless more post-graduate training places become available. So while there will be jobs for qualified doctors in the future, expect fierce competition for training positions to become a registered doctor.

In 2015 medical students from New South Wales expressed concern about the announcement of a new medical school in Western Australia, saying that it would just lead to a larger future shortfall of internships.

Click here for more information about a career in medicine, including infographics on the training pathway that continues after medical school.



ANMF National Graduate Nurse & Midwife Roundtable looking to secure jobs for graduates – December 2014

Thousands of 2014 nursing graduates predicted to miss out on jobs – May 2014

The jobs market for graduate nurses – August 2013

Health Workforce 2025 volume 1 – March 2012

Nursing Summary:

The Health Workforce 2025 document stated that unless there is national reform, Australia will have a shortage of 109,000 (27%) nurses by 2025, suggesting there is plenty of demand for nurses in Australia.

However, at the end of 2012, there was a shortage of graduate nursing positions in some states in Australia. A Facebook Group – ‘Give Grad Nurses a Chance‘ was set up in November 2012.

In April 2014, Health Workforce Australia estimated that 1,100 (15%) of registered nurse and midwifery graduates and 1,500 (45%) of enrolled nursing graduates will miss out on a permanent job in 2014.

Traditionally, nursing graduates transition into nursing practice via a one year “transition to professional practice” program, which is usually a full-time job in a hospital where they develop their skills in a supervised environment. A lack of these positions means that it can be difficult for graduate nurses to find a job as other employers are looking for nurses with experience.

Registered nurse Brad Winter has written an article which gives a number of suggestions on what to do if you miss out on a grad nursing program.

Click here for more information about a career in nursing in Australia. 



What does a 21.9% increase in the number of occupational therapists mean for the profession? – June 2015

Occupational therapy summary:

The data from the Occupational Therapy Board of Australia showed a 21.9% increase in the number of occupational therapists between September 2012 and December 2014. As a June 2015, it is difficult to say whether this will mean an expansion of the profession in Australia, or whether this will mean there is difficulty in graduates getting a job.

Click here for more information about a career in occupational therapy in Australia. 



Optometric workforce oversupply from 2016 – July 2014

Australian optometric workforce in focus – are there jobs for optometrists?  – April 2014

Are we training too many optometrists in Australia? – February 2014

Optometry reinstated to the Skilled Occupations List – July 2012

The Australian optometric workforce 2009 – Kiely, PM et al – published September 2010

Optometry Summary: 

Optometry Australia (formerly known as the Optometrists Association Australia) has forecast a significant oversupply of optometrists by the year 2036, but starting from 2016. Students looking at entering the course can expect a competitive jobs market on graduation.

The issue facing optometry is that two new schools of optometry have opened in Australia. According to the Optometrists Association Australia, as stated in the Health Workforce Australia report published in March 2014, “if the increased number of student commencements translate into greater numbers of graduates entering the workforce in the next five years, this will have impacts for the industry in terms of the availability of jobs at levels suited to graduates and early career optometrists.”

The article ‘The Australian Optometric Workforce 2009’ showed that the number of optometrists in 2009 was ‘more than adequate to meet the needs of the community.’ However, in 2012, optometry is on the government’s Skilled Occupation List, meaning it is accepting optometrists from overseas to live and work in Australia because there is thought to be a shortage of optometrists. Dentistry and pharmacy have had recent issues with an oversupply of practitioners due to inclusion on the Skilled Occupation List, but so far this is not known to exist for optometry.

Click here for more information about a career in optometry in Australia. 



69% of pharmacies to reduce staff hours by April 2015 – almost 9,000 job losses predicted – May 2014

Pharmacy – are there jobs out there for pharmacists? – June 2013

Pharmacy Summary:

In April 2014, the Pharmacy Guild of Australia publishes report predicting that by April 2015, there would be job losses for 2,229 community pharmacists and 4,400 pharmacy assistants throughout Australia. Read our June 2013 article “are there jobs out there for pharmacists” for suggestions on job opportunities for pharmacists.

Pharmacists are likely to find themselves in non-traditional roles or in two part-time roles. Some pharmacists are working in general practices, but it has been shown that this type of work depends on the method of remuneration in the practice.

Click here for more information about a pharmacy career in Australia.



Physiotherapy workforce data released – April 2014

Physiotherapy summary:

There is difficulty in filling physiotherapy vacancies in rural and remote areas of Australia. Data from Health Workforce Australia suggests that relatively few physiotherapists stay in the profession and advance to roles in administration and education. Therefore the idea of the investigation of more defined career pathways to retain experienced physiotherapists was raised.

Expanded scope of practice roles, such as having physiotherapists in emergency departments (which is already happening), was one development thought to assist in increasing retention. One of the reasons for physiotherapists not staying in to profession is thought to be due to the development of their own musculo-skeletal disorders, which can start to occur even in recent graduates aged in their 20’s. Physiotherapists seeking longevity in a clinical career need to monitor and maintain their own physical health.

Click here for more information about a physiotherapy career in Australia. 



Podiatry workforce data released – April 2014

Podiatry summary:

The supply of podiatrists in Australia has been limited by the number of clinical placements being offered to university students. However, the numbers of podiatry students have increased to approximately 400 in each year level across Australia. This means that relative to the current workforce, Australia would be producing a number of graduates which is over 10% of the workforce. If this were the case, the jobs market for podiatrists would become competitive in the next few years.

Click here for more information about a podiatry career in Australia. 



Psychology workforce data released – April 2014

Psychology summary:

Students who have completed an undergraduate degree in psychology need to gain entry into post-graduate study to become a registered psychologist. These post-graduate places are highly competitive, and limit the number of registered psychologists in Australia.


All Other Professions

In 2013, the federal government released projections of jobs growth to November 2017. In health care and social assistance, it was predicted that aged and disabled carers and child carers would experience the most significant jobs growth.

Health Workforce Australia (HWA) was due to release the data for 40 health professions in mid to late 2014…. but in the May 2014 federal government budget, HWA will be merging with the Department of Health. My Health Career will publish details of any health workforce data as it comes to hand.

The Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations publishes information about whether occupations  in Australia are experiencing shortages or not. For further information, click on the links:

You can also search for Australian labour market information via the Labour Market Information Portal


This page was last updated in June 2015. Please discuss this labour market data thoroughly with your careers advisor, guidance officer or career development practitioner as a part of your overall career decision. My Health Career also recommends that you speak to at least 3 different practitioners in any profession you may be considering.

This information provided by My Health Career is general in nature and does not take into account your personal circumstances. My Health Career takes no responsibility for whether or not you choose a course or profession that is right for you.