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Beauty and the geek: jobs of the future unveiled

06 September 2015

Connectivity, entrepreneurialism and a rising population will shape three million new jobs by 2030

A new study by Bernard Salt has uncovered the distinct skill sets which represent Australia’s future jobs in the digital age.

Developed by KPMG Demographics and commissioned by nbn, the Super connected jobs report explores how the potential for universal access to fast broadband can shape the future Aussie workforce and liberate employees from the confines of set working hours or places.

It predicts significant growth and transformation in existing jobs such as beauty therapists and personal trainers as well as a changing perception for stereotypically ‘geek’ jobs such as computer programmers and high tech start-ups which will become less niche and more mainstream.

Key findings include:

  • Three million more jobs by 2030 – With three million new jobs since 2000, it is likely the Australian workforce will increase by another three million more workers in the next 15 years to 2030. There will be a growing emphasis on part-time working women work as well as longer careers for older workers.
  • A culture of entrepreneurialism – The rise of new technology and digital disruption will facilitate a level of entrepreneurialism unlike ever before. This will influence the economy with the rise of ‘Silicon Cities and Beaches’ outside of metro areas, as more small and agile businesses pop-up with new ways to disrupt, improve and create value.
  • It’s not only about ‘robot polishers’ – While the invention of the motorcar created jobs in car cleaning, future jobs won’t mean everyone suddenly enters the robot cleaning business. Jobs of the future will stem from what is in most demand due to changing skill sets, population increase and the potential for ubiquitous access to fast broadband via the nbn network.
  • Connectivity the common thread – While digital disruption will create new business models, the majority of Australian job growth will come from ‘the jobs of today’. Connectivity will impact all types of jobs, even those not strictly in the technology space. New tools and new ways of communicating will influence all jobs of the future, no matter if you are a teacher, plumber, doctor or photographer.

Author of the Super connected jobs report, demographer Bernard Salt said:

“Australians are on the dawn of a disruptive ‘Uber-work’ era. Super connectivity made available via the nbn network will deliver a greater balance between work and lifestyle pursuits as we redefine how, when and where we will work.

“We could also see the rise of new Silicon cities or beaches in regional hubs around the country as universal access to fast broadband drives a culture of entrepreneurialism and innovation outside our capital cities.”

Who are the workers of the future?

  • The Care Givers – includes support services such as social worker and personal services like beauty therapists, nannies and fitness instructors. A future Care Giver fitness instructor will pitch for work using an uber-like app and conduct group workouts via HD video-conferencing.
  • The Technocrats – knowledge-workers who are highly skilled, highly trained and well-remunerated. The spectrum of jobs includes electrical engineers, medical researchers and business entrepreneurs. A future Technocrat could conduct an international collaboration via high speed broadband, to collaborate, develop and commercialise a research project.
  • The Specialist Professions – knowledge-workers that maintain systems and deliver outcomes including accountants, dentists, urban planners and teachers. A future Specialist Professional such as a doctor will conduct more of their work remotely and use technology to diagnose and treat patients.
  • The Doers – skilled jobs for those who ‘do’, such as plumbers, carpenters and electricians. No matter how much we automate, there will still be a requirement for waiters in the future. A future Doer will use technology to create new ways of communicating with clients, ordering materials, allocating work and processing payment.
  • The Creatives – this group of workers is driven by what pleases as opposed to what delivers the best return on effort. Stylist, social media engineer, photographer and yoga instructor are all Creative jobs that in the future will draw on access to high speed broadband for inspiration, instant connections with peers and clients and hassle-free large data transfers.

Media enquiries:

Dan Chamberlain
Phone: 02 8918 5837

nbn™ Media Hotline
Phone: 02 9927 4200


Click here for images of future workers

Click here for Bernard Salt audio grabs

Click here for video

Notes to editors

  • The Super connected jobs report was commissioned by nbn, the company building Australia’s new broadband network, and developed by demographer Bernard Salt on behalf of KPMG during June – August 2015.
  • Source of all statistics and trends is Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).
  • nbn is building a new, fast wholesale broadband network which can be accessed by all communities across Australia. Our goal is to connect eight million homes and businesses by 2020.
  • More than one million premises can now order fast broadband services via the nbn network – about one in ten homes. Nearly half a million homes are already connected and enjoying the benefits.
  • Fast broadband delivered via the nbn network can provide a range of benefits for Australians such as opportunities to work from home, access to online education tools and options for on-demand entertainment.
  • End-user experience, including the speeds actually achieved over the nbn network, depends on the technology over which services are delivered to your premises and some factors outside our control like equipment quality, software, broadband plans and how the end-user’s service provider designs its network. Access to your work network will depend on factors outside our control like your organisation’s IT policy and infrastructure.


Beauty and the geek: jobs of the future unveiled

Media Release
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Super Connected Jobs

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Super Connected Jobs Infographic

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