What are the biggest job sectors in Australia?

Boasting good wages and a high standard of living, Australia offers a wide range of employment opportunities for millions of expats. We’ve listed the country’s biggest job sectors to help you decide whether the UK’s most popular expat destination holds the key to your next career move.


While not the mammoth industry it used to be, manufacturing is still Australia’s leading source of employment. The biggest Australian industries within manufacturing are:

  • Food, beverages and tobacco
  • Metal products
  • Machinery and equipment
  • Petroleum, coal and chemical products

The food and beverage manufacturing industry is the largest in Australia, with meat, beverage and malt manufacturing providing the most opportunities, followed by dairy, sugar and confectionery.


While mining is another industry in decline, Australia nonetheless remains the world’s leading exporter of coal, mined primarily in Queensland, News South Wales and Victoria. It is also one of the world’s largest producers of aluminium, copper, gold, iron, mineral sands and zinc. Australia’s mining industry employs over 187,000 people directly and nearly 600,000 in support industries.


Farmers and graziers own nearly 135,000 farms covering over 60% of Australia’s landmass. Farming contributes 93% of the domestic food supply, including meat, vegetables, fruit and grains. Including related sectors – manufacturing and processing, distribution and retail – agriculture provides employment for over 1.6 million people.


Australia’s four major banks – Commonwealth Bank, Westpac, National Australia Bank and ANZ – are among the world’s largest and most profitable. The financial services sector employs 450,000 people, primarily in Sydney and Melbourne.


It should come as no surprise that the country’s seven million annual visitors, and enormous domestic tourism market, create hundreds of thousands of jobs in Australia. Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne in particular provide a wide range of tourism-related job opportunities.

With partner offices in 39 Australian cities, including Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane, Pickfords relocates thousands of expats to Australia every year. To find out how we can help you fulfil your expat dream, request a callback or contact us on 0800 019 8557.

Top 10 things to do in Sydney

The most populous city in the #1 expat destination, Sydney boasts good wages, a high standard of living and a laid back atmosphere. As well as being a great place to work and retire to, Sydney’s many tourist attractions make for some great experiences.  Here’s our top suggestions for things to do in this Australian state capital:

Explore the Royal National Park

Step inside over 15,000 hectares of bushland lining the coast of Sydney. The beautiful Royal National Park is ideal for swimming, trekking, bike riding, picnics and a wealth of other activities for the whole family.

Spot the sea life at Gordon’s Bay

Sandwiched between Coogee Beach and Clovelly Beach in New South Wales, the secluded oasis of Gordon’s Bay is the perfect snorkelling spot, home to starfish, sea urchins, cuttlefish and blue gropers, all ready to discover along the 600-metre underwater trail.

Go wild at Taronga Zoo

Say hello to elephants, chimpanzees, pygmy hippos, Komodo dragons, koalas and platypus at the wonderful Taronga Zoo. In addition to meeting the diverse wildlife, the zoo boasts some of the best harbour views in the city, so be on the lookout for the Harbour Bridge and Sydney Opera House as you travel the winding paths through the various enclosures.

Take an Aboriginal tour

Discover 60,000 years of indigenous history on a Sydney Aboriginal tour. The culture of the first Australians is rich with inspiring art and fascinating stories. From art gallery and museum tours to coastal walks and mountain treks, there are many different ways to uncover the intriguing history of this incredible country.

Sip a Hacienda cocktail

Drink in the incredible harbour views over a cocktail or three at the Hacienda Sydney vista bar. Relax in their soft lounge furniture under lush foliage and gentle orb lighting, enjoying their classic Cuban food and drink menu.

Climb the Harbour Bridge

The iconic Sydney Harbour Bridge sits at the heart of the harbour, giving you an uninterrupted panorama of the city and it’s surroundings, 134m above sea level at the summit.

Take a dive at Camp Cove

Whether you’re a keen snorkeler, paddleboarder, scuba diver, or simply a fan of serene ocean views, Camp Cove near Watsons Bay is the pinnacle of beautiful Aussie beaches.

Discover Wendy’s Secret Garden

Inspired by the late avant-garde artist Brett Whitely, Brett’s widow channelled her grief into creating an enchanting landscape that blends native and exotic flora, herbs, towering fig trees, flowers and berries. Wendy’s Secret Garden is a delight to explore, home to a menagerie of friendly parrots, kookaburras, owls and wagtails.

Get cultured at Art Gallery NSW

The Art Gallery of New South Wales boasts nearly 40 annual exhibitions of Australian, European and Asian art and holds workshops, talks and film screenings for the ultimate gallery experience.

Enjoy Aussie cuisine at Carriageworks

Enjoy organic, bio-dynamic and other seasonal produce at Carriageworks Farmers Market in Eveleigh, prepared and sold by farmers and artisan producers across the state.

If you’re considering a move to Sydney, contact Pickfords for a free move consultation on 0800 019 8556 or request a call back.