February 2018 TP Workforce Report

TP Human Capital : Townsville Workforce Report – February 2018

In this report – Workforce brief, Construction projects update and Skills hard to find.

Townsville Region Brief

  • Employed workforce improved fastest in Queensland
  • Trend Unemployment fastest improvement in Queensland
  • Trend participation rate improved 4.6 points to 63.5

    Townsville is coming back – the unemployment rate is improving

  • Employed to population ratio increased 6.16 ppts or 11.8% in relative terms. This means local people are getting jobs.
  • DS Economics Projects and Jobs list reinforces a more positive outlook for Townsville in 2018/19.

Queensland’s fastest jobs creator – Jobsville

In the year to January 2018, Townsville had the fastest employment growth of all regions in queensland. Townsville employment growth was 12.6% compared to the state average of 3.5%.

In the year to February 2018 The Greater Brisbane region created 14,400 jobs.  The Townsville region with less than 10% of that population created almost the same number of jobs or around 11,900.  Townsville has more jobs in its construction future.

Townsville also experienced the biggest fall in unemployment in Queensland in the year to February 2018. Townsville’s unemployment rate improved to 8.3%.  There are now 9,700 people unemployed.  The Trend participation rate also improved over the year to February 2018 up 4.6pionts to 63.5.

Based on this evidence Townsville regions economy and workforce is improving but still has a way to go before it achieves a sweet spot.  Townsville region has been and is likely to remain a jobs hotspot.

Future Jobs in Townsville

DS Economics started collecting project information in July 2017.  The DS Economics construction projects and jobs list now has a total of 142 approved, partially approved, under construction, potential and outer regional projects on our Townsville construction database.

Approved projects have an estimated value of $4.3B creating 7,686 direct total jobs.  This is without any modelling for indirect or induced jobs but we have included estimates for 1,739 operational jobs associated with approved projects.

In addition there are 40 potential and/or partially approved construction projects worth $8.1Billion conservatively creating 8,063 jobs.

Total value $12.3 billion and 15,749 direct total jobs.

On the list are also 29 outer region jobs that could directly compete for construction skills.  These have not been analysed in depth.

DS Economics have identified 8 projects that are complete.

Townsville Skills in Need

It is likely that future recruitment will become more challenging as competition for skilled and experienced workers increases.

Toughest jobs to find people for in Townsville:

  • Civil Engineers
  • Project Managers
  • Diesel Fitters
  • MC Truck Drivers
  • Mining
  • Marketing / Communications


January and February are traditionally months when school and tertiary graduates enter the workforce; wet season slows construction, tourism, transport and agriculture production across the Townsville region.  The year ahead is looking more promising than any of the past five years for eager workers.  There are currently 1270 vacant positions on Seek for the Townsville region, an increase of 5.9% for the month of February 2018.

Townsville is in a more positive workforce position than it was at the same time last year. It’s likely that businesses (depending on industry) will be in a more competitive environment, especially for workforce supply.  Some sectors of the Townsville economy are improving, evidenced by improving workforce demand, unemployment and participation figures and bolstered by a robust pipeline of job creating projects.  Some areas are underperforming such as youth, indigenous and over 50’s unemployment.  But the Employed to population ratio increased 6.16 ppts or 11.8% in relative terms.  This means local people are getting jobs.

We expect Townsville’s workforce information to improve over the next 12 to 18 months as projects like the NQ Stadium and Haughton Bridge development ramp up or commence.  Townsville’s Projects pipeline has thousands of direct jobs being created from multiple approved and near term projects.

In 2018, local businesses will more than likely have to head-hunt quality staff rather than rely on being able to tap into available talent pools.

Media release contact:  Clayton Cook, Managing Director, TP Human Capital – 47723800