In a previous post (see here) we called on the ABS to take a look at providing better regional labour force data, if only at a Greater Brisbane and Rest of Queensland level. The following brief analysis of our own Conus Trend data shows what a difference such data can make to our understanding of the employment story in our State.
We have taken a look at the split between Trend full-time and part-time employment in Greater Brisbane and the Rest of Queensland since Jan 1999. What this shows us is that, despite large growth in total number employed (up 791,900), how those jobs have been shared around the State has resulted in large changes to the face of employment. Greater Brisbane has added 425,900 of those jobs with the Rest of Queensland trailing behind with just 366,000.
When we consider the full-time/part-time split of these new jobs an even clearer picture emerges. Greater Brisbane has added 260,700 full-time jobs while the Rest of Queensland has seen just 225,600 more (with 33,400 of those added in just the past few months). The make-up of the Queensland labour market has shifted significantly over the years, as the two charts below make clear.
Back in 1999 35.5% of all the State’s jobs were full-time and based in Greater Brisbane. The Rest of Queensland was home to full-time jobs that made up 38% of the State’s total employment. By July 2017 Greater Brisbane could now boast full-time jobs that accounted for 34.5% of the QLD total while in the Rest of Queensland the measure has fallen to 34.3%. Part-time jobs obviously increased in line with these declines.
When we consider the employment in each Area on its own we see that full-time work in Greater Brisbane has fallen from a high of 74% at the end of 1999 to a recent (May 2017) low of just 69%. In the Rest of Queensland the declines was even more dramatic; down from 74% in May 1999 to just 67.5% at the end of 2016. In recent months we have seen some recovery in both Areas, with the Rest of Queensland leading the growth although only recovering to remain well below the current level in Greater Brisbane.
Over the past two decades there has been a significant shift towards more part-time work. This shift has been more pronounced in the Rest of Queensland than in the capital city, although recent improvements have gone some way to re-balancing that.