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Top 10 Highest-Earning Jobs in Australia
September 27, 2019
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The Australian Tax Office (ATO) has released their most recent set of income statistics that reveal the country’s top earners according to their average taxable income. 

The rankings are based on 13.9 million individuals who submitted their tax returns for the 2016–17 income year.

Somewhat unsurprisingly, the top three occupations come from the medical industry, while finance and engineering also feature prominently.

Of the 1,100 occupations listed by the ATO, the following top 10 have the highest average taxable income:

RankProfessionIndividuals in professionAverage taxable income
1Surgeons4,000$394,866
2Anaesthetists3,000$367,343
3Internal medicine specialists8,500$299,378
4Financial dealers4,500$261,008
5Psychiatrists2,800$216,075
6Other medical practitioners28,000$204,387
7Judical and other professionals3,500$195,703
8Mining Engineers8,000$167,345
9CEO and managing directors174,000$157,643
10Engineering managers25,000$147,451

To find out more about Australians’ income characteristics, such as the country’s highest-earning postcodes, head to the ATO’s Taxation statistics web page.

Australian Careers Service: How Will AI Change the Way We Work?
September 6, 2019
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It’s estimated that around 45 per cent of jobs in the current workforce will be automated within 20 years.

Although rapid progression of technology has made (and will continue to make) many jobs obsolete, it’s also creating new ones.

Research conducted by a cohort of University of Melbourne professors indicates that Artificial Intelligence (AI) is being used to replace cognitive tasks — that is, any tasks that requires a person to mentally process new information, retrieve information and to use it to retract information.

A 2013 report from the University of Oxford said that administrative support workers and even transportation and logistics occupations can and will be substituted by computers in the future — think telemarketers, clerks, cashiers, bus drivers and even hospitality workers.

According to research conducted by Ford, cognitive tasks are more likely to be replaced by AI. But rather than panicking about robots taking our jobs, we can look at the opportunities that technology brings to tomorrow’s workforce. A 2017 report by Commonwealth bank stated that ‘the future of work will be primarily about how people can collaborate effectively with machines to do what neither can do alone’. 

The advancements of technology offer career opportunities across all sectors. The University of Melbourne has done extensive research on how AI will influence the world and predicts that the next generation will be the most educated yet, which will lead to accelerated growth in jobs. Josh Bersin, principal and founder of Bersin by Deloitte, said that instead of eliminating jobs, AI is eliminating tasks and is creating new jobs for humans. These jobs require traits that robots haven’t mastered: empathy, communication and problem-solving.

Professor Tim Miller from University of Melbourne says that there are still plenty of jobs that won’t be handed to the rise of robots. Leadership positions, childcare and social workers, politicians, teachers, CEOs and doctors are here to stay, although they will inevitability evolve with advancements in technology. 

Machine learning, deep learning and other AI technologies are being incorporated into many different industries. If anything at all, robots are helping humans and making their jobs easier to manage. We’re already seeing this take place: cranes are helping humans to carry big loads, and driverless tractors and drones help humans with crop spraying. Factories already depend on AI to perform labour-intensive tasks.

AI can also assist in making effective decisions. Machines have higher predictive power to make better consumer decisions because of analytic tools that can automate and scale data. With trends consistently influencing customer expectations, there is a need for more data-driven insights.

Increasingly, more jobs are focusing on data to manage and implement strategic initiatives to provide better solutions. The University of Melbourne predicts that technology development has created a demand for more jobs in diverse occupations such as urban planning, construction, social work, transport and environmental science.

Why Mid-Life Could be the Best Time to Change Careers in Canada
June 12, 2019
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Record low unemployment, innovation, longer careers just some reasons middle-aged workers can find new paths. An article by Brandie Weikle is a senior writer for CBC News based in Toronto. 

While there isn’t widespread data available on career change and the ages at which it occurs, Statistics Canada does track the number of consecutive months Canadians have worked for their current employer.

Some of that data, analyzed by the Labour Market Information Council (LMIC) in Ottawa and provided to CBC News, shows that among workers 45 and older, average time on the job started to drop in 2017.

Though those numbers don’t differentiate between job changes and career shifts, the shorter tenures may indicate more career change — or at least the labour market conditions that help support it. Read more

Career Breaks Are the New Norm – So Why Are They Still Stigmatised?

When we think of career breaks, motherhood tends to spring to mind. But there are many other reasons why people take timeImage result for career breaks off work, and getting back in isn’t always easy.

Geoff was 44 when he found himself faced with a difficult decision: to leave his 30-year coal mining career behind him and retrain, or to continue doing what he knew best. He was at this crossroads because his 11-year-old daughter was concerned that he was putting himself in danger each day; she was scared of losing her dad. She didn’t know it, but her fear was very much grounded in reality. Mining has the third highest fatality rate of any industry. It now claims the lives of nine workers on average each year, and that number was even higher when Geoff was working in the industry.

With his daughter’s concerns front of mind, he decided to take a leap of faith and retrain as a teacher. Following two years of accelerated study, he found himself in a position where he was entering a new industry for the first time in over three decades. Read more

Harnessing the Power of Systematic Career Exploration
June 7, 2019
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Such exploration should happen early and often, writes Rebekah Layton, director of professional development programs in the Office of Graduate Education at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, who gives tips on how to get started

I am a career professional in higher education. I absolutely love, well, pretty much everything about my job.

Yet I would not have given it a second glance had I come across the job ad a year before experiencing a personal career crisis as a postdoc, simply because it didn’t come with a faculty label in its title.

In retrospect, this experience profoundly moved me and shaped my own perspective and professional choices. In fact, I am especially passionate about helping ensure that others never have to go through a similar experience to reach a career pathway they love; hence, my passion for providing opportunities to help trainees explore career pathways early and often, rather than waiting till late in their graduate or postdoctoral training. Harnessing the power of career exploration to seek a tailored-to-fit career match can be a transformative experience.

I was a postdoctoral trainee who had been pounding full force down the tenure-track career pathway for years when I realized I was going to be off cycle in the academic calendar year and was therefore unable to apply for academic jobs. I panicked. I had no idea where to start without the faculty career path as my centrepiece. In addition to navigating a changing professional identity and mourning for my lost identity as a future faculty member (which has been likened to a grieving process), I also had to balance a number of imminent competing priorities. Those included concern for meeting immediate financial and family needs, as well as managing the anxiety about the pending transition into the unknown, among others. It was obviously not the optimal time to approach career exploration with the clear mind, calm energy and careful logic needed to systematically apply myself, yet the situation demanded that I do so. The important lesson I learned was that systematic, logical exploration of career options early on can prevent the kind of panic that trainees feel when professional transitions arise unplanned or professional challenges cause a reconsideration of career goals.

As a career coach and workshop leader, I now provide guidance for trainees navigating through this process — hopefully before they get to the point where the process feels like an acute identity crisis. I encourage all trainees to go through the process of examining what they love about the careers they choose to pursue, including those on the academic track. For those planning on following academic career pathways, this process may simply reconfirm that a faculty career is absolutely right for them, and they may go on to do just that. Nonetheless, if later on, life events impact career choices, priorities change or job preferences shift, early career exploration ensures that they’ll be already prepared to handle questioning their professional identity with resilience.

But, you may wonder, how do I start a systematic personalized career exploration plan? Here are some starter pro tips, developed in collaboration with my colleague Patrick Brandt over the course of many years of collaboratively running career-planning workshops.

It’s not about the title. Erase any expectation of job title — and instead look up keywords of interest to see what job titles pop up. Do some research to identify any new job titles that may be of interest. Learn about how various organizational cultures in industry, government or academe might be similar or different. Do parallel roles with different titles exist in different settings? Don’t limit yourself.

Start with what you like to do. Not sure what keywords to start with? Consider: What parts of your training and research do you like to spend your time on? What skills in your training do you most enjoy using? Use these as a guide. Capitalize on transferrable skills you’ve developed during doctoral training (relevant for a multitude of careers), not just scientific, technical skills or discipline-based skills — although, of course, those can be important, too. (You can also visit MyIDP or ImaginePhD — online tools that provide career interests, skills, assessments and potential career matches and titles if you prefer a more structured approach than self-reflection alone).

Use career exploration to make an informed career choice or choices. Learn what possible titles might be a good fit for you. In our career planning workshops, we like to refer to such career options as Plan A and Plan A-Prime, indicating that there is value in being aware of multiple career pathways that you could be excited about, in contrast to a backup Plan B. You can ultimately decide to pursue one or many of them, but by preparing to be a good candidate for a few career possibilities, you ensure that you will have options and choices. No panic button needed here! Feeling stuck about what options are out there to find your Plan A or A-Prime? Read on.

Engage in career exploration through combinations of passive and active actions, as you feel ready. Look at career outcomes nationally to get started, if you’re not sure what career sectors, types and functions are out there for Ph.D.s. Check out career outcomes published by your institution to see what others in your department go on to do. Or explore alumni career profiles on LinkedIn — you might even connect with a few for informational interviews. Listen to podcasts (like HelloPhD) where you can hear from scientists in a variety of careers and positions about what they do in their role, field, company and the like. Another method is to look for career panels, professional development events, career symposia or other professional networking events in your area. Get excited about all the career possibilities out there!

Systematically review skills, experiences and job requirements for careers/positions of interest. First collect a set of representative job ads (usually three to five per job field is a good start) for one or more career fields, and group similar jobs. Pick one career field at a time to gather together each job ad pile and take a look at what you notice about the set. We advocate for something we like to call a Skill Profile Analysis — our fancy way of asking trainees to look for patterns in the data, putting already well-developed research skills to use to collect and analyze them. You can repeat this with as many careers as you like, but to avoid running out of steam or feeling overwhelmed, start with your top one to three careers of interest. (You can always go back later to add a new career field.)

Compare current skills with those needed. Pick one career pathway of interest and move on to identifying which of those patterns you fit well with. We refer to this as conducting a Skill Gap Analysis. Then it’s time to go point by point: identify skills, keywords, experience requirements and so forth that you found in common across job ads in that career field, and then take stock of how you measure up. In what areas, can you metaphorically knock the ball out of the park? In what areas can you possibly score a run but could use more practice and development? And in what areas are you still in the dugout? Now you’ve created a snapshot at the intersection of you at the current time point with one possible career pathway and have developed an important tool to use in your next steps.

Find your fit, make the match. Use the skills and experiences you’ve identified as standout strengths to build a résumé that is tailored to showcase your current skills and experience as it best matches with your chosen field(s). And, yes, that means building multiple versions for each career option you are considering. Take some time to reflect on areas where you’d like to grow more and make a plan of action to build skills in the ones you’ve identified. As you work your way through a few career options, you may also realize that you aren’t as interested in a particular pathway that isn’t a great fit, or that you are a better fit than you first thought for another position that is unexpectedly a great fit.

Going through the steps of career exploration can help you identify and prepare for the personalized career of the future you. An exciting career awaits you! But first you have to go out there and find it. Don’t wait to get started. Today is the day.

Read more

The Rise of Underemployment in Australia
May 31, 2019
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According to the Bureau’s Labour Force Survey, reports show that in 2019, the seasonally adjusted underemployment rate has increased to 8.5 per cent – that’s almost two million people in Australia who want to work more hours than they already do.

Underemployment occurs when people in a labour force are employed less hours than they’d like, leading them to take on other casual jobs to make more money. This is a problem in Australia, where there’s a growing pool of underemployed workers who are looking for opportunities to gain more income. An underemployed worker may find themselves competing with other underemployed and even unemployed individuals for similar opportunities. So, what is it that creates underemployment among Australians?

Lack of skills and experience Read more

Who is Australia’s Most Popular Graduate Employer?
May 7, 2019
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Deloitte is the number one graduate employer in Australia according to the latest data from the joint report by the Australian FinanciallogoReview (AFR) and GradConnection 

The Top 100 Graduate Employers 2019 list followed tact on previous editions, with the Big Four accounting firms (Deloitte, PwC, KPMG and EY) featuring in the top 10, alongside IBM (#3), NSW Government (#4), Accenture (#6), Commonwealth Bank of Australia (#8), Quantium (#9) and Dentsu Aegis Network (#10).

Deloitte jumped from number three to top spot, displacing 2018 number one PwC into second position. NSW Government was a big mover, shifting from outside the top 10 (#12) into third, as was Commonwealth Bank of Australia (#18 to #8) and Denstu Aegis (#22 to #10). However, it was rapidly growing data analytics firm Quantium that made the biggest surge into the top 10, sliding 21 places down the list from #30 to #9.  Read more

Careers: Wales, Scotland & Northern Ireland
April 2, 2019
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The following updates were first published in the DMH Associates newsletter.

CAREERS WALES – Working Wales

Last year, on behalf of the Welsh Government, Deirdre reviewed international approaches to employability assessment and referral, as part of the Welsh Assembly Government’s programme – Prosperity for All – https://beta.gov.wales/sites/default/files/publications/2018-10/prosperity-for-all-annual-report-2018.pdf  Since July 2018, she has worked closely with Careers Wales to inform and support their ongoing work in preparation for Work Advice Wales, due to launch in April 2019.

In January 2019, Deirdre contributed to a staff training and development programme with senior managers and careers advisers from across Wales. This covered need-based approaches to guidance, assessment and referral, motivational interviewing, and solution-focused approaches to career guidance and coaching working with vulnerable young people and adults. Feedback from these sessions was very positive:

“I just wanted to drop you an e-mail to thank you for your support during the workshops last week.  We’ve received fantastic feedback from staff following your session, they found it really informative, valuable and were left feeling motivated, thank you for that!…I’ve also had the chance to view your session via the video recording you made on Friday and they are brilliant, we will be using those during the workshops this week and I’ll also look to see if we can add them to our intranet for staff across the organisation to view.”   Read more

Four International Reports Related to Career Development
March 20, 2019
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World Development Report 2019: The Changing Nature of Work (World Bank)

This report studies how the nature of work is changing as a result of advances in technology. Fears that robots will take away jobsfrom people have dominated the discussion over the future of work, but the World Development Report 2019 finds that, on balance, this appears to be unfounded.

Investing in Refugee Talent: Lessons Learned in Labour Market Integration (Hire Immigrants, Cities of Migration and BertelsmannStiftung)

This report shares 13 international best practices in refugee labour market integration, which all represent the pivotal role of employment in the integration of refugees and the private sector as a key stakeholder in receiving communities. Read more

Australian Debate: Is it Time to End Unpaid Internships?
March 1, 2019
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The following International article was written by the Australian Careers Service and raises the issue of unpaid Internships and if they are alogo positive or negative way of helping students develop the skill and knowledge required for their chosen career.

In December 2018, the New South Wales Labor party, lead by Michael Daley, announced plans to scrap ‘exploitative’ unpaid internships if they win the 2019 state election.

This proposal reignited debate around what has been a long-standing issue within the labour market, drawing on the ethical and moral dilemmas that often accompany discussions about unpaid internships.

Read more