Home > Research Centre > Labour Market and Skills > Jobs Online > May 2012

Jobs Online monthly report – May 2012

Published: June 2012

Jobs Online measures changes in job vacancies advertised on the two main internet job boards - Seek and Trade Me Jobs.

Strong growth in online job vacancies

Jobs Online shows, in seasonally adjusted terms, that skilled job vacancies[1] increased by 9.5% in May, following two consecutive falls in March and April (see Figure 1). Similarly, all job vacancies increased by 9.9% in May, following a decrease in April. The trend has been increasing for the past six months although there has been some variation from month to month. Skilled job vacancies increased across all industry and occupation groups and across all regions.

Figure 1: Skilled Vacancies Index (SVI)
Seasonally adjusted and trend series (May 2007=100)

Figure 1: Skilled Vacancies Index (SVI) and All Vacancies Index (AVI) Trend series (May 2007=100)

Data table for Figure 1

Figure 2: All Vacancies Index (AVI)
Seasonally adjusted and trend series (May 2007=100)

Figure 2: All Vacancies Index (AVI) Seasonally adjusted and trend series (May 2007=100)

Data table for Figure 2

Compared with a year earlier, skilled vacancies were up by 10.1% and all vacancies were up by 12.8%.

Job vacancies have been generally increasing since August 2009, when they were at their lowest point due to the recession, with skilled vacancies up by 77.4% and all vacancies also up by 81.3%.

The increase in job vacancies in the past year is consistent with the anticipated gradual recovery in employment over the coming year. The latest Household Labour Force Survey (HLFS) results showed that 9,000 more people were employed in the March 2012 quarter. Recent business confidence survey results show hiring intentions have eased but remain positive. The Department forecasts[2] annual employment to grow by 1.8% in the 2013 March year and by 2.4% in the 2014 March year.

Skilled job vacancies increased in all industry and occupation groups

During May, skilled job vacancies increased across all industry and occupation groups (see Table 1). Demand for skilled workers was strongest in the sales, retail, marketing and advertising industry group (up by 19.2%), followed by accounting, HR, legal and administration (up by 13.4%), and healthcare and medical (up by 10.4%).

Over the year, skilled job vacancies increased across most industry groups. Growth continues to be the strongest in construction and engineering (up by 26.5%), followed by sales, retail, marketing and advertising (up by 11.9%). Industries that showed a decrease were education and training (down by 14.9%) and information technology (down by 2.8%).

Table 1: Skilled Vacancies Index (SVI) by industry and occupation groups, seasonally adjusted

Industry

Monthly change
(Apr 12 – May 12)

Annual change
(May 11 – May 12)

Sales, retail, marketing and advertising

19.2%

11.9%

Accounting, HR, legal and administration

13.4%

8.6%

Healthcare and medical

10.4%

8.8%

Hospitality and tourism

10.1%

7.4%

Construction and engineering

9.1%

26.5%

Education and training

7.0%

-14.9%

Information technology

5.1%

-2.8%

Other

9.7%

21.9%

Occupation
Monthly change
(Apr 12 – May 12)
Annual change
(May 11 – May 12)

Managers

17.3%

12.4%

Technicians and trades

15.4%

25.4%

Professionals

6.6%

4.5%

Total skilled job vacancies

9.5%

10.1%

 

Figure 3: Skilled Vacancies Index (SVI) by industry group
Seasonally adjusted series (May 2007=100)

Figure 3: Skilled Vacancies Index (SVI) by industry group - Seasonally adjusted series (May 2007=100)

Data table for Figure 3

Figure 4: Skilled Vacancies Index (SVI) by industry group
Trend series (May 2007=100)

Figure 4: Skilled Vacancies Index (SVI) by industry group - Trend series (May 2007=100)

Data table for Figure 4

During May, online vacancies for managers had the strongest increase (up by 17.3%), followed by technicians and trades workers (up by 15.4%) and professionals (up by 6.6%).

Over the year, skilled job vacancies increased across all major skilled occupation groups. The biggest growth was for technicians and trades workers (up by 25.4%).

Strong growth in skilled vacancies across all regions

On a regional basis, skilled job vacancies rose across all regions (see Table 2). The South Island (excluding Canterbury) had the strongest growth in skilled vacancies in May (up by 11.8%), followed by Auckland (up by 11.6%) and Wellington (up by 9.9%).

Table 2: Skilled Vacancies Index (SVI) by region, seasonally adjusted

Region Monthly change
(Apr 12 – May 12)
Annual change
(May 11 – May 12)
Auckland
11.6%
3.0%
Wellington
9.9%
8.5%
North Island - Other
5.2%
8.5%
Canterbury
4.1%
32.0%
South Island - Other
11.8%
35.9%
Nationwide
9.5%
10.1%

 

Figure 5: Skilled Vacancies Index (SVI) by region
Seasonally adjusted series (May 2007=100)

Figure 5: Skilled Vacancies Index  (SVI) by region - Seasonally adjusted series (May  2007=100)

Data table for Figure 5

Figure 6: Skilled Vacancies Index (SVI) by region
Trend series (May 2007=100)

Figure 6: Skilled Vacancies Index  (SVI) by region - Trend series (May 2007=100)

Data table for Figure 6

Over the year, the South Island (excluding Canterbury) had the strongest growth in skilled job vacancies of any region (up by 35.9%), closely followed by Canterbury (up by 32.0%).

Construction and engineering driving growth in Canterbury

The demand for skilled labour in Canterbury was strong over the year. The strong growth in job vacancies in the region over the year was driven by the demand for skilled workers in the construction and engineering industry (up by 61.2%) and accounting, HR, legal and administration (up by 55.3%). This shows that the Christchurch rebuild is driving the strong job growth in the region.

SEEK Employment Index

SEEK NZ recently published the SEEK Employment Index (SEI)[3] for May 2012. The SEI measures the ratio of new job ads placed during the month to the number of applications. This means that as the index increases, each vacancy attracts fewer applications and the labour market tightens.

Nationally, the SEI fell by 1.3% in May while job ads rose, indicating stronger growth in the number of applicants.

Figure 7 shows that the SEI for Canterbury has increased by 119.2% since the September 2010 earthquake. In comparison, the increase in new job ads since then has been more modest. The increase in the Canterbury SEI over this period has been largely driven by the rise in new job ads, while the total number of applications, a proxy for labour supply, has not kept pace with the rise in job ads. This is consistent with the fall in Canterbury’s working-age population and in the labour force participation rate[4] following the earthquakes. Increasing labour market tightness in the region is likely to increase skill shortages and this will put more pressure on wages.

Figure 7: SEEK Employment Index, Canterbury and New Zealand
Seasonally adjusted (January 2005=100)

Figure 7: SEEK Employment Index, Canterbury and New Zealand - Seasonally adjusted (January 2005=100)

Source: SEEK Employment Index, SEEK NZ

Data table for Figure 7  

Revisions

Jobs Online is adjusted for seasonal variations. In accordance with standard statistical practice, the entire series is revised each month and this can lead to noticeable revisions of previously published figures towards the end of the data series. Table 3 below gives a summary of the revisions made to the previous Jobs Online reports over the past four months.

Table 3a: Revisions Summary - Skilled Vacancies Index

Month Skilled Vacancies Index (SVI)
Revised Previously Published1
Monthly Annual Monthly Annual
Percentage change

Jan 2012

1.6

8.8

1.5

8.8

Feb 2012

5.3

9.6

5.7

9.6

Mar 2012

-0.1

3.7

-2.0

3.7

Apr 2012

-4.2

-3.1

-3.1

-3.1

Table 3b: Revisions Summary - All Vacancies Index

Month All Vacancies Index (AVI)
Revised Previously Published1
Monthly Annual Monthly Annual
Percentage change

Jan 2012

1.9

10.0

1.9

10.0

Feb 2012

6.6

13.2

6.5

13.3

Mar 2012

-2.7

6.0

-3.2

5.9

Apr 2012

-2.0

3.5

-2.4

3.4

Note 1: Figures as published last month.

 

For further information

For more information on Jobs Online, see the Background and Methodology report.

For other reports visit the Labour and Immigration Research Centre or email research@mbie.govt.nz.

Future updates

This is a regular report – see our Release calendar for the the next update.


Footnotes

[1] Skilled occupations are defined as skill levels 1-3 under the Australia New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations (ANZSCO) 2006. Skill level 3 is equivalent to an NQF level 4 qualification.

[2] Short-term employment prospects: 2012-14

[3] SEEK NZ, The SEEK Employment Index

[4] The labour force participation rate is the share of people aged 15 years and over who are either employed or unemployed (and seeking work).