Cabinetmakers fabricate and repair wooden furniture, and fit and assemble prepared wooden parts to make furniture.

A Certificate III/IV is usually needed to work in this job and the majority of workers have this qualification. Training is most commonly through an apprenticeship which combines on-the-job training with the qualification.

Tasks

  • examining drawings, work orders and sample parts to determine specifications
  • selecting and working with materials such as timber, veneers, particle board and synthetic wood
  • marking out, cutting and shaping wood
  • working from drawings and specifications to make furniture
  • making fittings for boats, caravans and other items where fine detail is required
  • assembling parts to form sections of furniture and completed articles
  • fitting hinges, locks, catches, drawers and shelves
  • making frames for chairs and couches
  • may repair and refurbish furniture and antiques

Job Titles

  • Cabinetmaker
  • Cabinetmaker

    Specialisations: Antique Furniture Reproducer, Antique Furniture Restorer, Chair and Couch Maker, Coffin Maker

Fast Facts

  • $1,000 Weekly Pay
  • 31,900 workers Employment Size
  • Stable Future Growth
  • Medium skill Skill level rating
  • Lower unemployment Unemployment
  • 94.2% Full-Time Full-Time Share
  • 42.9 hours Average full-time
  • 36 years Average age
  • 2.2% female Gender Share

The number of Cabinetmakers grew very strongly over the past 5 years and is expected to stay fairly stable over the next 5 years:
from 31,900 in 2017 to 31,200 by 2022.
There are likely to be around 7,000 job openings over this time from workers leaving and new jobs being created (a small number for an occupation of this size).

  • Size: This is a large occupation.
  • Unemployment: Unemployment was below average in 2017.
  • Location: Cabinetmakers work in most regions of Australia.
  • Industries: Most work in Manufacturing; Construction; and Other Services.
  • Earnings: Full-time workers earn around $1,000 per week (below the all jobs average of $1,230). Earnings tend to be lower when starting out and higher as experience grows.
  • Full-time: Most work full-time (94.2%, much higher than the all jobs average of 68.4%) showing part-time work may be hard to find.
  • Hours: Full-time workers spend around 42.9 hours per week at work (compared to the all jobs average of 40.0 hours).
  • Age: The average age is 36 years (compared to the all jobs average of 40 years).
  • Gender: 2.2% of workers are female (compared to the all jobs average of 46.7%).

In 2016, employers in most locations found it hard to fill vacancies for Cabinetmakers, although employers in South Australia and Western Australia were able to recruit with ease. To find out more, view the Department of Jobs and Small Business latest skill shortage research opens in a new window.

Employment Outlook

Number of Workers

Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, Department of Jobs and Small Business trend data to May 2017 and Department of Jobs and Small Business projections to 2022.
YearNumber of Workers
200727100
200827500
200926500
201027800
201128700
201223400
201324800
201429300
201526600
201626400
201731900
202231200

Weekly Earnings

Weekly Earnings (Before Tax)

Source: Based on ABS Characteristics of Employment survey, August 2015, Cat. No. 6333.0, Customised Report. Median earnings are before tax and do not include superannuation. Earnings can vary greatly depending on the skills and experience of the worker and the demands of the role. These figures should be used as a guide only, not to determine a wage rate.
EarningsCabinetmakersAll Jobs Average
Full-Time Earnings10001230

Main Industries

Main Employing Industries (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2017, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Industries are based on the Australian and New Zealand Standard Industrial Classification (ANZSIC 06).
Main Employing IndustriesIndustry (% share)
Manufacturing84.5
Construction11.6
Other Services1.6
Retail Trade1.4
Other Industries0.9

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 2017, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian States and Territories, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
StateCabinetmakersAll Jobs Average
NSW29.831.6
VIC23.826.2
QLD24.119.7
SA6.66.7
WA11.610.8
TAS1.72.0
NT1.21.1
ACT1.41.8

Age Profile

Age Profile (% Share)

Source: Based on ABS Labour Force Survey, annual average 2017, Cat. No. 6291.0.55.003: Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Age BracketCabinetmakersAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
15-197.6-5.25.2
20-2414.2-9.99.9
25-3421.4-23.623.6
35-4425.1-21.721.7
45-5413.3-20.820.8
55-596.9-8.88.8
60-648.8-6.06.0
65 and Over2.6-4.04.0

Education Level

Highest Level of Education (% Share)

Source: ABS, Education and Work (2016). Findings based on use of ABS TableBuilder data. Highest qualification completed by workers in this job (in any field of study). Skill level requirements can change over time, the qualifications needed by new workers might be different from the qualifications of workers already in the job.
Type of QualificationCabinetmakersAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate0-8.68.6
Bachelor degree0-17.917.9
Advanced Diploma/Diploma0-10.110.1
Certificate III/IV69.3-18.918.9
Year 1210.3-18.718.7
Years 11 & 1012.3-17.717.7
Below Year 108-8.18.1

A Certificate III/IV is usually needed to work in this job and the majority of workers have this qualification. Training is most commonly through an apprenticeship which combines on-the-job training with the qualification.

Before starting a course, check it will provide you with the skills and qualifications you need.

  • Compare undergraduate and postgraduate student experiences and outcomes on the QILT website.
  • Compare Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses, providers and student outcomes on the My Skills website.
  • You might be interested in Furnishing Industry VET training pathways on the AAPathways website.

The course listings on this page are provided by Good Education Group.

Employers look for Cabinetmakers who are hardworking, reliable and work well in a team.

Knowledge

These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.

  1. Mathematics

    84% Important

    Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.

  2. Building and Construction

    76% Important

    Materials, methods, and the tools used to construction or repair of houses, buildings, or other structures such as highways and roads.

  3. Production and Processing

    73% Important

    Raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and ways of making and distributing goods.

  4. Mechanical

    69% Important

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

  5. Design

    69% Important

    Design techniques, tools, and principles used to make detailed technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.

Occupational Information Network
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 51-7011.00 - Cabinetmakers and Bench Carpenters.

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

These are kinds of activities workers regularly do in this job.

  1. Getting Information

    84% Important

    Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.

  2. Controlling Machines and Processes

    83% Important

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

  3. Handling and Moving Objects

    83% Important

    Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.

  4. Performing General Physical Activities

    78% Important

    Doing things that use of your arms and legs and whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.

  5. Making Decisions and Solving Problems

    77% Important

    Using information to work out the best solution and solve problems.

Occupational Information Network
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 51-7011.00 - Cabinetmakers and Bench Carpenters.

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