Job vacancy rate in media agencies drops but some markets are left hanging

The job vacancy rate in media agencies has reduced to 8.5% in 2022 from 12% in 2021. However, some markets accounted for more unfulfilled positions such as Sydney, which housed 62.3% of the open roles.

An annual industry census conducted by the Media Federation of Australia (MFA) found that following Sydney, Melbourne accounted for 27.6% of the vacant media agency jobs in Austalia, while Brisbane had 5.8%.

MFA reported that it represents over 90% of all media billings placed by media agencies in Australia. As of September 2022, staff numbers in media agencies are up 6.2% year-on-year, with MFA agency members employing 4,685 people, compared to 4,412 people in 2021 and 3,703 in 2020.

11% of the industry professionals were graduate new recruits and 12% are boomerangs (those who have returned to media agencies after working in another sector) and career changers.

While the vacancy rate has dropped, it is still higher than the normal level of 6%. According to the MFA estimate, the industry population would exceed 5,000 if all vacant roles were filled.

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Meanwhile, professionals employed in talent roles have increased by 68% over the past years, reflecting a focus on employee support.

In terms of volume, 57% of vacancies are being driven by in-demand roles in implementation, client services and affiliate and e-commerce. When indexing against the industry population, the greatest vacancies are in affiliate & e-commerce, SEO and analytics.

Women in management roles have increased to 46% and a 4% pay gap that are both said to be better than the Australian average, as recorded by the Federal Government’s Workplace Gender Equality Agency.

L-R: Linda Wong and Sophie Madden

Director people at the MFA, Linda Wong, said: “Overall, the latest MFA Census paints a positive picture of the industry.

“Together our industry is continually trying to solve the talent crisis and the new Career Changers Program, launched by the MFA to attract employees from outside the media agency industry, will be instrumental in contributing to a solution.

“Our goal is to increase the industry talent pool and swell our population, while also attracting more diverse talent.”

MFA CEO Sophie Madden added: “The Annual MFA Industry Census accounts for every single person working in an MFA member agency, and therefore provides an important and accurate snapshot of the health of media agencies.

“It demonstrates consistent industry growth and positive movement in key metrics, proof that agency and industry initiatives are making inroads in tackling vacancy rates, growing women in leadership roles, and attracting talent to return to the industry.”


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