Truck Drivers drive heavy trucks, removal vans, tankers and tow trucks to transport bulky goods and liquids.

A Certificate II or III, or at least 1 year of relevant experience, is usually needed to work in this job. Around one in three workers have Years 11 and 10 as their highest level of education. Even with a qualification, sometimes experience or on-the-job training is necessary. Registration or licensing is required.

Tasks

  • manoeuvring vehicles into position for loading and unloading
  • loading and unloading vehicles using lifting and tipping devices
  • observing safety requirements when loading and unloading vehicles
  • making regular quality checks of vehicles to ensure they can be driven safely
  • estimating weights to comply with load limitations and ensuring safe distribution of weight
  • ensuring goods are stowed and securely covered to prevent loss and damage
  • verifying loading documents, checking condition of goods and obtaining certification of deliveries

Job Titles

  • Truck Driver (General)
  • Aircraft Refueller
  • Furniture Removalist
  • Tanker Driver
  • Tow Truck Driver
  • Truck Driver (General)

    Drives a heavy truck, requiring a specially endorsed class of licence, to transport bulky goods. Registration or licensing is required.

    Specialisations: Cement Mixer Driver, Compactor Driver (Rubbish Collection), Haulpak Driver, Livestock Haulier, Logging Truck Driver, Road Train Driver, Tilt Tray Driver

  • Aircraft Refueller

    Drives a tanker truck filled with aviation fuel to waiting aircraft, attaches a fuel hose to aircraft fuel tank and fills it with fuel. Registration or licensing is required.

    Specialisations: Ground Crewman Aircraft Support (Army)

  • Furniture Removalist

    Drives a removal van or truck to move household and office furniture and equipment between locations. Registration or licensing is required.

    Specialisations: Office Mover

  • Tanker Driver

    Drives a tanker truck, requiring a specially endorsed class of licence, to transport bulk liquids. Registration or licensing is required.

    Specialisations: Milk Tanker Driver, Petrol Tanker Driver, Water Tanker Driver

  • Tow Truck Driver

    Drives a tow truck, requiring a specially endorsed class of licence, to transport broken-down motor vehicles. Registration or licensing is required.

    Specialisations: Mechanic Recovery (Army)

Fast Facts

  • Avg. Weekly Pay

    $1,300 Before Tax
  • Future Growth

    moderate
  • Skill Level

    Certificate II or III
  • Employment Size

    173,000
  • Unemployment

    average
  • Male Share

    96.1%
  • Female Share

    3.9%
  • Full-Time Share

    90.8%

Find Vacancies

This is a very large occupation employing 173,000 workers. Over the past 5 years the number of jobs has grown strongly.
Moderate growth is expected in the future. New jobs and turnover from workers leaving may create more than 50,000 job openings over the 5 years to 2020.

  • Truck Drivers work in most parts of Australia.
  • They mainly work in: Transport, Postal and Warehousing; Construction; and Mining.
  • Almost all work full-time. Full-time workers, on average, work 46.0 hours per week.
  • Average earnings for full-time workers are high at around $1,300 per week. Earnings tend to be lower when starting out and higher as experience grows.
  • The workforce is fairly mature. The average age is 47 years (compared to 40 for all careers) and around 6 in 10 workers are aged 45 years or older.
  • Most workers are male.
  • In 2016, the unemployment rate was similar to the average.

Employment Outlook

Number of Workers

Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, Department of Employment trend data to November 2015 and Department of Employment projections to 2020.
YearEmployment Level
2005155300
2006158700
2007163500
2008173100
2009167200
2010158200
2011173400
2012176100
2013163400
2014185200
2015173000
2020183300

Weekly Earnings

Full-time Earnings

All Careers Average

Weekly Earnings (before tax)

Source: ABS Characteristics of Employment survey, August 2015 cat. no. 6333.0. Median earnings are before tax and do not include superannuation. These figures should be used as a guide only, not to determine a wage rate.
EarningsTruck DriversAll Jobs Average
Full-Time Earnings13001230

Hours

Weekly Hours Worked

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016.
CategoryTruck DriversAll Jobs Average
Full-time91.969
Part-time8.130.8
Average Weekly Hours (full-time)45.540.2

Main Industries

Top Industries

Main Employing Industries (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016. Industries are based on the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC 06).
Main Employing IndustriesIndustry (% share)
Transport, Postal and Warehousing60.0
Construction6.8
Mining6.6
Electricity, Gas, Water and Waste Services5.2
Other Industries21.4

States and Territories

  • NSW

  • VIC

  • QLD

  • SA

  • TAS

  • NT

  • ACT

Employment by State and Territory (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016.
StateTruck DriversAll Jobs Average
NSW30.231.8
VIC25.725.5
QLD21.219.8
SA7.06.7
WA13.011.1
TAS1.92
NT0.91.1
ACT0.21.8

Age Profile

Age Profile (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016.
Age BracketTruck DriversAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
15-190.6-5.45.4
20-243.5-9.99.9
25-3417.6-23.323.3
35-4421.0-21.621.6
45-5432.8-21.121.1
55-5912.7-8.68.6
60-648.2-5.95.9
65 and Over3.5-3.73.7

Gender

Male Share

Female Share

Gender (% share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2016.
CategoryTruck DriversCategoryAll Jobs Average
Males96.6Males53.8
Females3.4Females46.1

Education Level

Top Education Levels

Highest Level of Education (% share)

Source: Based on ABS 2016 Survey of Education and Work (SEW).
Type of QualificationTruck DriversAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate0.0-8.58.5
Bachelor degree3.6-17.817.8
Advanced Diploma/Diploma4.0-10.110.1
Certificate III/IV26.4-18.818.8
Year 1216.8-18.618.6
Years 11 & 1037.2-17.617.6
Below Year 1012.1-8.08.0

A Certificate II or III, or at least 1 year of relevant experience, is usually needed to work in this job.
Around one in three workers have Year 12 as their highest level of education. Even with a qualification, sometimes experience or on-the-job training is necessary. Additional tickets may also be needed to work in this job.
If you are interested in this style of work, there are a wide range of training options available that could lead to this or a similar job.
The pathway that is right for you will depend on your skills and interests.

It is a good idea to speak to industry bodies, employers, and workers to learn more about the skills and qualifications you will need.

Employers look for Truck Drivers who are reliable, provide good customer service and are well presented.

Knowledge

The topics, subjects, or knowledge areas workers rate as most important are shown below.

  1. Transportation

    80% Important

    Moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road.

  2. Public Safety and Security

    75% Important

    Use of equipment, rules and ideas to protect people, data, property, and institutions.

  3. Customer and Personal Service

    74% Important

    Customer and personal services. This includes understanding customer needs, providing good quality service, and measuring customer satisfaction.

  4. English Language

    69% Important

    English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.

  5. Mechanical

    64% Important

    Machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.

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Learn about the daily activities, and physical and social demands faced by workers. Explore the values and work styles that workers rate as most important.

Activities

The work activities workers rate as most important are shown below.

  1. Operating Vehicles or Equipment

    92% Important

    Running, manoeuvring, navigating, or driving things like forklifts, passenger vehicles, aircraft, or water craft.

  2. Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material

    86% Important

    Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials for errors, problems or defects.

  3. Getting Information

    85% Important

    Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.

  4. Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events

    77% Important

    Comparing objects, actions, or events, looking for differences between them or changes over time.

  5. Controlling Machines and Processes

    76% Important

    Operate machines or processes either directly or using controls (not including computers or vehicles).

Occupational Information Network Truck Drivers, Heavy and Tractor-Trailer Opens in a new window
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration. The information on this site is derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2

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