Over the last 18 months, we have seen monumental pivots, shifts and changes as industries adapt to a “new normal” across the globe. While some sectors such as hospitality and live events have faced their share of challenges, we have seen others boom! Here we take a peek at five of those industries that are thriving in 2021.
The eCommerce industry
According to e-commerce platform Shopify, at the height of the pandemic, e-commerce reached an all-time high, accounting for 16.4% of total global retail sales - experiencing the equivalent of 10 years of e-commerce growth in just 90 days! According to a global survey across 11 markets, 84% of consumers shopped online during the pandemic.
Australia is the 11th biggest e-commerce market in the world and is expected to reach USD32.3 billion by 2024. E-commerce marketplaces like Amazon, eBay and Gumtree account for 40% of consumer-based transactions, with the remainder taking place on individual company websites.
Growth in e-commerce has also fuelled growth in other adjacent industry segments. Digital marketing and technology services, third-party logistics companies and transportation and delivery services have all experienced growth off the back of online shopping.
Payment gateways such as PayPal now accounts for 48.8% of purchases, 39.9% are made from traditional banking sources. The remaining 6.7% of transactions are made through buy-now-pay-later services, which continue to grow year on year.
The health care industry
Australia's growing and ageing population will continue to generate strong demand for health services – infrastructure investment, healthcare technology, patient experience and the ageing population all being key growth drivers of the sector.
The Australian healthcare industry is expected to increase by 250,000 jobs in 2022. Unsurprisingly, the development of lifesaving technologies fuelled by the pandemic, the development of the COVID-19 vaccine and subsequent rollout have all contributed to a growing industry sector.
During 2020, we also saw a significant uptake in telehealth services which continues to attract record venture capital funding into digital health start-ups.
“Prior to COVID-19, telehealth was a developing technology sector but was still underutilised,” explained Craig Cooper, the CEO of Cardiovascular monitoring Medtech CardieX (ASX:CDX). “The last year saw a rapid acceleration of devices, software solutions, digital health, and other technologies that have rapidly enabled the telehealth and remote patient monitoring ecosystem."
The ageing population contributes to overall growth in health care in many ways, including aged care services. The 2020 Royal Commission into aged care handed down its final report in March 2021 seeking significant industry reform.
As a result of this reform, the government announced a $452 million package as an initial response to the report. It is expected that there will be an additional 18,000 personal care workers to support in-home care and 57,000 extra nurses in aged care homes to comply with fixed minimum staffing ratios recommended to the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety.
The agriculture and textiles industry
While livestock exports have been falling, the gross value of agricultural production is forecast to reach a record $66 billion in 2020–21, boosted by Australia's second‑biggest winter crop on record. Significantly larger harvests in every Australian state are forecast to result in a 59% increase in the gross value of grains, oilseeds and pulses compared with the 2019–20 season.
Those farmers experiencing the greatest levels of success have been those willing to innovate and embrace emerging technologies. It is predicted there will be continued investment into agtech start-ups fuelling growth and sustainability in the sector. An increased focus on "buying local" has seen a push for consumers seeking to know where their food comes from, creating demand for traceability technologies.
According to IBIS World, the cotton-growing industry is projecting 121.8% revenue growth in 2021/22, which is a welcome rise off the back of the previous year's drought-affected production. It is predicted that the national crop will triple this year based on current water allocations. A similar story applies to the grain industry, which is expecting 46% revenue growth based on current climate conditions. However, challenges may arise with decreased demand from China as a result of diplomatic tensions.
The construction industry
It was thought the construction industry was going to be hit hard. However, the Australian construction industry is expected to rebound in 2021 and grow by 2.6%.The sector broke new growth records in March 2021 as housebuilders scrambled to commence residential projects as soon as possible to meet the final HomeBuilder deadline.
Between January and March, all four sectors of the construction industry experienced growth. According to Ai Group, "Employment grew at the most rapid pace in the history of the series and wages rose faster than at any time since the Global Financial Crisis. Input prices surged due to a combination of high demand, supply constraints and rising freight costs for imported inputs. New orders went through the roof in March in part fuelled by the looming cut-offs for the HomeBuilder program.”
While the current surge in new orders will cease soon, work will continue to flow through the industry and suppliers for some time, supporting the industry sector and the broader economy.
Further growth in 2021 is being driven by the Australian government's focus on an infrastructure-led economic revival through new and accelerated infrastructure spending. In mid-June 2020, the government announced that 15 infrastructure projects worth AUD72 billion (US$49.1 billion) would be fast-tracked, supporting over 60,000 direct and indirect jobs.
The technology industry
The technology sector in Australia accounts for around AUD122 billion [vi] every year, contributing to 6.6 per cent of GDP. While we may not be home to tech giants like Apple, Facebook, Netflix and Google, we have some very impressive technology companies of our own. Atlassian, Appen, Afterpay, Canva, Computershare, ELMO Software, REA Group, Xero, and Link Admin, to name a few.
The last 12 months have seen greater emphasis on digital platforms, and remote working has created increased importance on data security, mobility and workforce agility. Combined with the increase in e-commerce and online purchasing, cybersecurity is top of mind. It is projected that about 7,000 more cybersecurity workers will be needed across all industries nationwide by 2024, according to a forecast by the Australian Cyber Security Growth Network.
The amount of digital transformation that has been seen over the past 12 months is unprecedented. As a result, many industries are increasing their digital footprint to communicate remotely with customers or internally. Data analysts, data scientists, data engineers and data architects are in high demand.
The National Skills Commission has placed "data analysts" and "data scientists" at the top of its list of emerging occupations.
Australia's fastest growing industries help create a stable environment for businesses and professionals to explore market opportunities while contributing to the economy. With this comes much-needed employment for the country of Australia. A report by Data61[vii] estimates that improvements to existing industries and the growth of new ones could be worth $315 billion [viii]to the Australian economy over the next decade.
If you are a part of one of these growth industries and need assistance in hiring support, contact a recruitment agency like Trojan Recruitment Group and receive advice from the experts in labour-hire, temp, permanent and contract staff.