Australia’s Average Salary by Age and Industry

It really is true what they say. Money does make the world go round!

We all need it, and quite a bit of it too. For our rent or mortgage, food, to settle the bills, entertain ourselves and even, heaven forbid, enjoy some of life’s little luxuries.

But ever wondered which were the best industries to earn money from?

Well, thankfully the good people at the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) have recently revealed the answer. Publishing a detailed report that showcases the average salary in Australia, per age and industry.

It makes for interesting reading. Not least because it allows you to see where your current pay levels are, in comparison to the rest of the country.

Allow us to explain in a bit more detail.

Australia’s Average Weekly Wage and Annual Salary

Australia’s Average Weekly Wage and Annual Salary

According to the report by the Australian Bureau of Statistics, the average full-time earnings for Aussie adults working ‘ordinary time’ in November 2020 was $1,712. A figure that was seasonally adjusted.

Before you start rushing off to ask your boss for a pay rise, it is important to recognise that Aussie salaries can be affected by various factors.

This includes the composition of the workforce, which may encompass factors like the number of people in full-time, part-time, casual and junior positions. As well as the levels of employee earnings.

You also need to take into account variations in the distribution of occupations across industries and geographical locations. As well of course as the number of hours worked and paid for, and the length of time an employee has been at a company.

To put this figure of $1,712 into context. It compares with the median weekly earnings as follows:

$577 for part-time employees ($30,004 annually);

$1,463 for full-time employees ($76,067 annually); and

$1,110 across the board ($57,720 annually).

The report by the Australian Bureau of Statistics has enabled us to collate some pretty telling information, which should give you a fair indication of what the average Aussie earns as a salary in terms of the industry in which they work, and their age.

So, when you next start talking to someone and they tell you what you do, then you should have a fair indication of what their earning capacity is without you having to ask that potentially awkward question!

Average Salary in Australia – By Age

Average Salary in Australia – By Age

When it comes to determining salary in Australia, your age is a major factor.

For instance, those who work in casual employment will receive a wage that is based on their age. Typically, the older you are the more you will get paid.

So to put this into context. A 35 year old is likely to get paid more than a 25 year old, but not necessarily more than a 45 year old.

Indeed, according to the ABS, the ages between 45 and 54 are when most people earn the highest salaries of their career.

Young people tend to suffer due to the casual nature of the work they do. Which is often performed in conjunction with their studies.

This concept of earning more as you get older is supported by the co-working organisation, Instant Offices. Through their own research, they have worked out the average national salary benchmarks by age.

In case you were wondering, here is how much your average salary should be, as per your age.

20 & under

20 & under:

Weekly average earnings: $383.70

Yearly average salary: $19,952

21 to 34

21 to 34:

Weekly average earnings:$1,127.60

Yearly average salary: $58,635

35 to 44

35 to 44:

Weekly average earnings: $1,503.70

Yearly average salary: $78,192

45 to 54

45 to 54:

Weekly average earnings: $1,544.20

Yearly average salary: $80,298

55 & older

55 & older:

Weekly average earnings:$1,373.40

Yearly average salary: $71,417

Australian’s Average Income – By Gender

Australian’s Average Income – By Gender

It’s no secret that your gender determines how much you get paid too. With the stats clearly illustrating the gender pay gap that remains.

According to ABS, the average salary of adult Aussie males and females in 2018 had a ratio difference of 0.689.

This translates to a current pay gap of 13.4%. Which means that females typically earn $1,099.40 per week, as opposed to males’ weekly take-home pay of $1,594.70.

Although the gender pay gap is gradually narrowing, it still does exist in pretty much every industry except for sex work and modelling.

While it is fair to say that the gender pay gap can be influenced by bias, outdated thinking and downright discrimination, other factors do have an impact too. Such as whether you are in full-time or part-time employment. The industries you work in and whether or not you are part of a group bonus scheme.

In case you were wondering, the average weekly earnings by gender in Australia are currently:

Men’s full-time weekly salary: $1,804.20

Women’s full-time weekly salary: $1,562.00

Highest Earning Industries in Australia

Highest Earning Industries in Australia

As mentioned previously, different industries have markedly different wage brackets.

This was outlined in the ABS report, and showcases the average weekly earnings for full-time, Australian adults, working ‘ordinary time’ per industry as follows:

Mining: $2,633.20

Information media & telecommunications: $2,033.60

Professional, scientific & technical services: $2,001.40

Electricity, gas and water services: $1,944.10

Education and training: $1,838.30

Public administration & safety: $1,824.50

Transport, postal & warehousing: $1,685.20

Healthcare & social assistance: $1,675.60

Construction: $1,629.40

Wholesale trade: $1,578.40

Manufacturing: $1,555.90

Rental, hiring & real estate services: $1,539.80

Financial & insurance services: $1,539.80

Administrative & support services: $1,526.00

Arts & recreation services: $1,464.40

Other services: $1,322.80

Retail Trade: $1,289.30

Accommodation & food services: $1,161.10

Therefore, depending on what industry we enter, we can do so with a pretty decent understanding of its earning capacity.

These stats also prove that wage growth in the lucky country has not really changed over the years. With the same industries that pay the most, remaining on top, while the perennial low payers, stay at the bottom.

Final Thought

So there it is! Our synopsis of Australia’s average salary by age and industry.

We hope this article has given you a firmer understanding of how your average pay compares to that of other industries.

And if you are looking for a change of jobs for an increase in salary, then you will know which industries in which to focus your attention.