10 Jobs with the biggest pay rises


Are you eyeing a career switch (and a bigger paycheck) this year? You’re not alone: almost half of Australian workers (49%) feel they are underpaid in their current roles and more than half (58%) are not satisfied with their salary. As cost of living pressures rise, average Aussies are looking for ways to make ends meet without having to take a second job. 

If you’re looking to level-up your take-home earnings, these ten roles took home the biggest pay rises last year. These are the jobs with the biggest pay rises as of December 2023. Read on to find out what roles they are and where you can find them.

With Aussies witnessing an average hourly wage increase of a whopping 7.8% last year, some professions have seen even bigger boosts. Thanks to insights from our parent company Employment Hero, we’ve got the lowdown on where you’ll find the biggest pay bumps.

Where in Australia are wages soaring?

Not all states and territories were created equal, and some have seen far higher wage growth than others. Queenslanders and Tasmanians are leading the pack with a standout 9% wage growth, leaving the Northern Territory trailing with a modest 4.8% increase. These are jobs with the biggest pay rises in 2023

Your age also plays a part in how much your wages grow. Those in the 65+ workforce enjoyed an 8.4% raise last year, while Gen Z (under 18 and 18-24) were still catching up with a 6.4% bump.

Apart from jobs with the biggest pay rises, these age groups had the most (and least) growth

Unsurprisingly, the industry you’re in also makes a big difference to your take home page. In 2023, we saw industries like Science and IT, and Construction and Trade Services maintain strong wage growth —a sign of growth and revival post-COVID.

The winning list: 10 jobs with the biggest pay rises

If you want a little extra left over after the bills have been paid —or if you’re simply craving more zeroes in your bank account, these roles offer the strongest year on year wage growth. 

Want in? We’ll also share tips for breaking into these lucrative fields:

#1 IT Operations Manager – 27.8% increase

It’s a good time to be an IT operations manager, with roles in the Science, Information & Technology industries seeing an almost 29% pay increase last year. 

🌟Want to find these roles? There’s over 2,500+ operations manager roles live on Swag Jobs right now. You can create a profile and start getting automatically matched to these roles today.  

✏️Want to work as an operations manager? Hone your IT skills through certifications and online courses in network management, cybersecurity, and cloud computing. Gain experience in lower IT roles and demonstrate leadership capabilities. Networking within tech communities and on professional platforms like LinkedIn can also uncover opportunities.

#2 Construction and Trade Labourer – 26.1% increase

Tradies and construction workers nailed their pay rises (literally) in 2023, with a 26.1% wage increase since 2022. 

🌟Looking for Trade and Construction roles? There’s over 900+ to choose from on Swag Jobs. Don’t want to sort through them all? Create a profile to start getting automatically matched to great jobs based on your skills, experience and preferences.

✏️Tips for transitioning: If you’re working in a different field and are interested in a future in construction, consider vocational training or apprenticeships through TAFE and other providers. You’ll need to also earn specific certifications, including a Certificate IV in Building and Construction. Networking with local contractors and joining trade unions can also provide job leads. 

#3 Warehouse Assistant – 25.2% increase

Demand for warehouse workers has skyrocketed in recent years, thanks to shipping giants like Amazon setting up shop in Australia. You can now order almost everything online: from clothing to electronics, groceries —even milk and bread. That means warehouses are filled with products that need to be picked and packed: and a 25.2% increase in the salaries of those packing them. 

🌟Looking for warehouse roles? There’s over 200+ to be found on Swag Jobs

✏️Tips for transitioning: While formal education isn’t strictly necessary, courses in logistics and supply chain management can give you an edge. Familiarity with warehouse management systems and technology is beneficial. Start with entry-level positions and express your eagerness to learn and take on responsibility.


#4 Sales Manager – 24% increase

If you were a sales manager in the manufacturing, transport and logistics industry, your salary would have jumped a healthy 24% in the last year. With mega-sized warehouses and the explosion of online shopping, all those packages need to be shipped and sent around the world. Sales Managers are responsible for negotiating shipping contracts, maintaining supplier relationships and promoting transportation solutions for the thousands of warehouses around Australia.

🌟 Looking for Sales Manager roles in the logistics industry? There’s hundreds to choose from on Swag Jobs today. Don’t feel like sorting through the pile? Swag SmartMatch automatically serves you a list of top roles with employers that are interested in hiring you. You can apply with just a click.

✏️ Interested in a career as a sales manager? A background in sales, marketing, or logistics, along with strong interpersonal skills, can pave the way. Consider certifications in logistics or supply chain management. Building  networks within the industry and showcasing your ability to manage client relationships is super important: it’s not just what you know, but who you know. 

#5 Transport Driver – 22.9% increase

Warehouse workers and logistics sales managers have seen huge pay bumps recently, so it only makes sense that transport drivers have also seen a 22.9% pay boost in the last year. Without them, your Adore Beauty packages and JB HiFi orders would never arrive in time for the weekend (Psst: we’ve got serious cashback off both those retailers when you shop in the Swag store).

🌟If you’re looking for transport driver jobs, you can find them (plus 1M+ more potential opportunities!) on Swag Jobs.

✏️Tips for transitioning: Acquiring the appropriate driver’s licence and endorsements for the type of vehicle you intend to drive is essential. Clean driving records and experience with navigation and safety regulations will support your transition. Consider starting with smaller delivery jobs to build your resume.

#6 Carpenter – 21.7% Increase

Carpenters saw a 21.7% increase in wages in the last year, marking an uptick for the construction industry after a slow post-pandemic recovery. 

🌟If you’re looking for construction roles, you can find them (plus 1M+ more opportunities to be discovered) on Swag Jobs

✏️Interested in a career in carpentry? Apprenticeships or trade school programs in carpentry offer a solid foundation. Building a portfolio of your work, even from personal projects, can demonstrate your skills to potential employers. Connecting with construction companies and local carpenters can also lead to opportunities.

#7 Draftsperson – 21.1% Increase

Another key player in the construction industry are draftspeople, who are responsible for creating the technical drawings used in construction and building. This specialist role has seen a 21.1% increase in the last year. 

✏️Want to pursue a career as a draftsperson? Proficiency in CAD (Computer-Aided Design) software is crucial, so consider relevant courses or certifications. An associate’s degree in drafting or a related field can be beneficial. Gain experience through internships or entry-level positions in engineering or architectural firms.

#8 Retail, Hospitality, and Tourism Crew Leader – 20.8% Increase

With travel and hospitality well and truly recovered post-lockdowns, team leaders in retail, hospitality and tourism have been in high demand. They’ve earned a 20.8% pay increase in 2023, a sign of a booming industry.

✏️Swag Tip: There’s thousands of jobs in retail, hospitality and tourism live on Swag Jobs right now. Don’t want to spend time searching through them all? Create a profile and use Swag Smartmatch to get automatically matched to the right opportunities. We use your experience, skills and interests to present you with a top list of job matches. The best bit? Most of these jobs haven’t even been advertised yet —so you get to skip the queue. 

#9 Community Support Worker – 20.6% Increase

Community Support workers saw a well-deserved 20.6% salary increase the last year, putting it in the top ten occupations in terms of wage growth. 

🌟Right now there’s over 650+ community support worker roles available on Swag jobs to choose from.

✏️Want a career in community support? Qualifications in social work, psychology, or related fields can be helpful. Volunteering for community services or nonprofit organisations can provide valuable experience and insights into the role. Demonstrating empathy, patience, and strong communication skills are key traits to cultivate.

#10 Housekeeping – 19.4% Increase

Housekeepers cleaned up with a 19.4% wage increase last year. The growth in wages reflects a trend of lower-skilled workers getting substantial bumps to their take-home pay, with support services such as cleaning seeing strong wage growth. 

Find your next move on Swag Jobs

There’s over 1 million job opportunities on Swag Jobs —but we don’t expect you to search through them all. That’s why we’ve created Swag Smartmatch, an AI-powered feature that matches you to roles based on your skills, experience and interests. It’s like your unfair advantage in the job hunt. The best bit? These are roles that haven’t been posted anywhere else yet —so you get to skip the queue and have first pick before the competition. Interested? Create a candidate profile on Swag Jobs today. 


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