General Clerks perform a range of clerical and administrative tasks.

A Certificate II or III, or at least 1 year of relevant experience, is usually needed. Around half of workers have finished no post school qualifications (that is, they have completed some level of high school). Even with a qualification, experience or on-the-job training is sometimes required.

Tasks

  • recording, preparing, sorting, classifying and filing information
  • sorting, opening and sending mail
  • photocopying and faxing documents
  • preparing reports of a routine nature
  • recording issue of equipment to staff
  • receiving letters and telephone messages
  • transcribing information onto computers, and proofreading and correcting copy
  • may provide customers with information about services
  • may perform receptionist duties

Job Titles

  • General Clerk

    Fast Facts

    • $1,000 Weekly Pay
    • 231,500 workers Employment Size
    • Moderate Future Growth
    • Lower skill Skill level rating
    • Average unemployment Unemployment
    • 58.5% Full-Time Full-Time Share
    • 35.6 hours Average full-time
    • 42 years Average age
    • 85.4% female Gender Share

    The number of General Clerks grew strongly over the past 5 years and is expected to grow over the next 5 years:
    from 231,500 in 2018 to 242,800 by 2023.
    Job openings can come from new jobs being created, but most come from turnover (workers leaving).
    There are likely to be around 182,000 job openings over 5 years (that's about 36,400 a year).

    • Size: This is a very large occupation.
    • Unemployment: Unemployment was average in 2017.
    • Location: General Clerks work in most regions of Australia.
    • Industries: They work in many industries such as Public Administration and Safety; Education and Training; and Health Care and Social Assistance.
    • 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: More than half work full-time (58.5%, similar to the all jobs average of 68.4%), but there are many opportunities to work part-time.
    • Hours: Full-time workers spend around 35.6 hours per week at work (compared to the all jobs average of 40.0 hours).
    • Age: The average age is 42 years (compared to the all jobs average of 40 years).
    • Gender: 85.4% of workers are female (compared to the all jobs average of 46.7%).

    Employment Outlook

    Number of Workers

    Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, Department of Jobs and Small Business trend data to May 2018 and Department of Jobs and Small Business projections to 2023.
    YearNumber of Workers
    2008136100
    2009144100
    2010180700
    2011185800
    2012211000
    2013211400
    2014247700
    2015242700
    2016259600
    2017245500
    2018231500
    2023242800

    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.
    EarningsGeneral ClerksAll 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)
    Public Administration and Safety21.5
    Education and Training13.6
    Health Care and Social Assistance11.9
    Professional, Scientific and Technical Services7.2
    Other Industries45.8

    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.
    StateGeneral ClerksAll Jobs Average
    NSW33.331.6
    VIC22.426.2
    QLD22.519.7
    SA7.06.7
    WA8.410.8
    TAS1.92.0
    NT1.51.1
    ACT3.11.8

    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 BracketGeneral ClerksAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
    15-192.5-5.25.2
    20-249.0-9.99.9
    25-3421.1-23.623.6
    35-4422.3-21.721.7
    45-5424.2-20.820.8
    55-599.9-8.88.8
    60-647.6-6.06.0
    65 and Over3.5-4.04.0

    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 QualificationGeneral ClerksAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
    Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate5.8-8.68.6
    Bachelor degree14.3-17.917.9
    Advanced Diploma/Diploma11.7-10.110.1
    Certificate III/IV19.5-18.918.9
    Year 1229-18.718.7
    Years 11 & 1018.5-17.717.7
    Below Year 101.3-8.18.1

    A Certificate II or III, or at least 1 year of relevant experience, is usually needed.
    Around half of workers have finished no post school qualifications (that is, they have completed some level of high school). Even with a qualification, experience or on-the-job training is sometimes required.

    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 Business Services VET training pathways on the AAPathways website.

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

    Employers look for General Clerks who interact well with others, provide good customer service and have good computer skills.

    Knowledge

    These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.

    1. Clerical

      90% Important

      Word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office work.

    2. Customer and Personal Service

      81% Important

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

    3. English Language

      75% Important

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

    4. Computers and Electronics

      59% Important

      Circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.

    5. Mathematics

      58% Important

      Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.

    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, 43-9061.00 - Office Clerks, General.

    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. Interacting With Computers

      89% Important

      Using computers and computer systems (including hardware and software) to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.

    2. Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Staff

      88% Important

      Giving information to supervisors, co-workers, and staff by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.

    3. Documenting/Recording Information

      83% Important

      Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.

    4. Performing Administrative Activities

      78% Important

      Doing day-to-day office work such as filing and processing paperwork.

    5. Getting Information

      76% Important

      Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.

    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, 43-9061.00 - Office Clerks, General.

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