Occupational and Environmental Health Professionals develop, implement and evaluate policies and programs to monitor environmental health and occupational health and safety and related legislation to ensure safe and healthy working conditions, and assist injured staff through the workers' compensation and rehabilitation process.

A Bachelor Degree or higher, or at least 5 years of relevant experience, is usually needed. Around half of workers have a university degree. Sometimes relevant experience or on-the-job training is needed in addition to the qualification. Registration or licensing may be required.

Tasks

  • developing, implementing and reviewing environmental health management plans and occupational health and safety plans
  • preparing and implementing plans and strategies for the safe, economic and suitable disposal of commercial, industrial, medical and household wastes
  • advising on and enforcing legislation, implementing prevention programs and strategies for communicable diseases, food safety, waste water treatment and disposal systems, recreation and domestic water quality, contaminated and hazardous substances, and minimising air, sea, water and noise pollution to improve health outcomes
  • identifying hazards, and assessing and controlling risks in the workplace
  • developing, implementing and monitoring programs minimising workplace and environmental pollution involving chemical and physical hazards
  • promoting ergonomic principles within the workplace such as matching furniture, equipment and work activities to the needs of employees
  • inspecting and auditing workplaces, processes, plant, and chemical and physical hazards for legislative compliance
  • training employees in personal protective equipment and safe working procedures
  • recording and investigating injuries and equipment damage, and reporting safety performance
  • coordinating the return of injured workers into the workplace

Job Titles

  • Environmental Health Officer
  • Occupational Health and Safety Adviser, Coordinator or Officer
  • Environmental Health Officer

    Develops, enforces and evaluates environmental health policies, programs and strategies to improve health outcomes, and oversees the implementation and monitoring of environmental health legislation. Registration or licensing may be required.

    Specialisations: Food Safety Auditor, Food Safety Officer

  • Occupational Health and Safety Adviser, Coordinator or Officer

    Develops, implements and evaluates risk management policies and programs, trains employees in occupational health and safety procedures, monitors and audits the workplace, and records and investigates incidents to ensure safe and healthy working conditions.

    Specialisations: Occupational Hygienist, Workplace Rehabilitation Officer

Fast Facts

  • $1,771 Weekly Pay
  • 26,400 workers Employment Size
  • Very strong Future Growth
  • Very high skill Skill level rating
  • Lower unemployment Unemployment
  • 82.1% Full-Time Full-Time Share
  • 40.2 hours Average full-time
  • 42 years Average age
  • 34.5% female Gender Share

The number of Occupational & Environmental Health Professionals fell over the past 5 years and is expected to grow very strongly over the next 5 years:
from 26,400 in 2017 to 30,600 by 2022.
There are likely to be around 16,000 job openings over this time from workers leaving and new jobs being created.

  • Size: This is a large occupation.
  • Unemployment: Unemployment was below average in 2017.
  • Location: Occupational & Environmental Health Professionals work in most regions of Australia.
  • Industries: They work in many industries such as Public Administration and Safety; Professional, Scientific and Technical Services; and Construction.
  • Earnings: Full-time workers earn around $1,771 per week (very high compared to 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 (82.1%, much higher than the all jobs average of 68.4%).
  • Hours: Full-time workers spend around 40.2 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: 34.5% 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 2017 and Department of Jobs and Small Business projections to 2022.
YearNumber of Workers
200714300
200822500
200919300
201022700
201127300
201229400
201326000
201425700
201526400
201621400
201726400
202230600

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.
EarningsOccupational and Environmental Health ProfessionalsAll Jobs Average
Full-Time Earnings17711230

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 Safety23.2
Professional, Scientific and Technical Services12.5
Construction11.5
Manufacturing8.4
Other Industries44.4

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 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.
StateOccupational and Environmental Health ProfessionalsAll Jobs Average
NSW25.731.6
VIC27.326.2
QLD22.619.7
SA7.26.7
WA11.810.8
TAS1.62.0
NT2.31.1
ACT1.51.8

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 BracketOccupational and Environmental Health ProfessionalsAll Jobs AverageAll Jobs Average
15-190.6-5.25.2
20-244.8-9.99.9
25-3423.8-23.623.6
35-4424.8-21.721.7
45-5421.3-20.820.8
55-5917.3-8.88.8
60-646.0-6.06.0
65 and Over1.4-4.04.0

Education Level

Highest Level of Education (% Share)

No data is available for the selected graph for this Occupation.

A Bachelor Degree or higher, or at least 5 years of relevant experience, is usually needed.
Around half of workers have a university degree. Sometimes relevant experience or on-the-job training is needed in addition to the qualification. Registration or licensing may be 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 Health Industry and Public Sector VET training pathways on the AAPathways website.

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

Employers look for Occupational & Environmental Health Professionals who are caring and empathetic and can work well in a team, with the ability to communicate with a diverse range of people.

Knowledge

These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.

  1. English Language

    83% Important

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

  2. Law and Government

    80% Important

    How our laws and courts work. Government rules and regulations, and the political system.

  3. Education and Training

    79% Important

    Teaching and course design.

  4. Public Safety and Security

    79% Important

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

  5. Customer and Personal Service

    75% Important

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

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, 29-9011.00 - Occupational Health and Safety Specialists.

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. Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Staff

    91% Important

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

  2. Checking Compliance with Standards

    90% Important

    Deciding whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.

  3. Getting Information

    88% Important

    Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.

  4. Making Decisions and Solving Problems

    87% Important

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

  5. Training and Teaching Others

    84% Important

    Identifying the educational needs of others, developing training programs or classes, and teaching or instructing others.

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, 29-9011.00 - Occupational Health and Safety Specialists.

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