ANZ hiring trends: Best industries to work in 2021-22

The report notes that job opportunities are expected to grow.

By U2B Staff 

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The pandemic has been a harbinger of gloom in the job market, but a recent hiring trends survey suggests that Australia and New Zealand’s economic recovery is better than anticipated, suggesting brighter days are ahead for professionals in specific industries.

According to The Hays Salary Guide FY21/22 by recruitment firm Hays, permanent headcount increase is strong in the life sciences (61%), legal (59%), contact centres (58%) and engineering (56%).


The Hays Salary Guide FY21/22 shows a snapshot of salaries, workforce and recruiting trends across Australia and New Zealand. Close to 3,500 organisations were surveyed.

The report notes that job opportunities are expected to grow. Close to half (47%) of employers intend to increase permanent staff levels in the next 12 months, while 15% will increase their use of temporary or contract staff.

Hiring trends suggest strong demand for experts in the life sciences

Demand for professionals in the life sciences industry is expected to be strong. 

The survey notes that 61% of life sciences employers intend to increase permanent staff levels over the coming year. This is unsurprising, given that COVID-19 outbreaks are still happening in Australia and across the globe.

Following close behind is the legal industry, where 59% of employers will add to their permanent headcount. 

Permanent vacancy growth is also high in contact centres (58%), technology (57%) and both engineering and human resources (56%).

Soft skills are just as important as technical skills

It’s easy for individuals to overlook soft skills when upskilling. However, almost all (96%) employers consider soft skills to be either more important or equally important to a candidate’s hard or technical skills.

“While the necessary technical skills required to perform a role are a given, strong soft skills are also necessary to successfully operate in the workplace,” notes the report.

Teamwork tops the list of soft skills sought in permanent candidates today. 

Employers prioritise this ability to work well with colleagues, stakeholders and clients to ensure common goals are met.

Among the top soft skills employers prioritise in permanent staff: 

  • Teamwork (81%)
  • Problem-solving (79%)
  • Communication (74%)
  • Adaptability (70%) 
  • Critical thinking (63%)

Upskill to stand out

Ultimately, to stay competitive in the job landscape, upskilling is a must.

The report recommends employees have the right mix of technical and soft skills, and highlight these skills in their CVs, as well as practical examples of how they have used these skills for a successful outcome in a job interview.

Job seekers will also need to advance their digital skills as most roles now require a high level of digital literacy. Employers value candidates who can leverage new technology to work more effectively and efficiently, the report notes.

Don’t forget to add quantifiable examples throughout the work experience section of your CV to stand out.