Young Western Australia jobseekers have been facing a tougher start to their working lives, after a new report revealed more applicants than available positions in the State.
An Anglicare WA report released on Thursday revealed almost seven young Western Australians are fighting for every entry-level job across WA, including in retail and hospitality industries.
“We are finding that entry level jobs in particular for young people are diminishing in the West Australian labour market,” Anglicare WA CEO Ian Carter said.
“We are now the third worst state in Australia behind Tasmania and South Australia, in terms of a number of people who apply for entry level jobs.”
The report also found students with a WACE certificate were finding it harder to land full time employment.
Across Australia, Anglicare found 700,000 unemployed people were chasing 171,554 advertised jobs, with only 26,000 suitable for entry level applications.
Mr Carter said it was the result of increasing competition following the end of the mining and construction boom.
“It’s a lot more difficult for them now and certainly, the mining boom has started to come off and so we’re impacting that and the construction boom we had, where at one stage we were delivering more than 30 thousand, we’re now down to half that level,” he said.
He said continual knock-backs had negative health impacts to job seekers.
“If you’ve experienced a level of unemployment and rejection, so you apply for a job, knock-back, apply for a job, don’t get any response, the impact on your mental health is quite significant,” he said.
Mr Carter said the focus needed to be on new areas where jobs could be found.
“All of us as a community and as a state need to start focusing on what are the jobs of the future in Western Australia, everything from artificial intelligence to new jobs in disability, in warehousing, in the community aged sector,” he said.
It came after new employment statistics revealed Western Australia’s unemployment rate fell from 5.9 per cent to 5.7 per cent.
The national unemployment rate also dropped from 5.6 per cent to 5.5 per cent, the lowest rate since 2013.
However, the State Government has continued to improve employment and training opportunities for young jobseekers, following the introduction of a training agreement between Tafe and Rio Tinto.
The agreement will enable young people to be skilled to be employed in jobs created by automation and advancing technology.
“At the heart of the Plan for Jobs is training and preparing for the next wave of jobs,” Education Minister Sue Ellery said.