Patents Examiners investigate and report on patent applications to assess their compliance with the requirements of the Patents Act.
Assesses whether patent applications provide an adequate technical description of the invention.
Assess whether the patent rights sought are justified and match the invention's technical description.
Searches online databases to discover similar patents held in Australia and overseas.
Assesses whether the advances claimed for the invention are new.
Reports their findings to the patent applicant or the applicant's legal representative.
JSA produces employment projections to show where likely future job opportunities may be. Employment projections data are only produced for occupations at the broad four digit Australian and New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations (ANZSCO) level. While data are not available for this occupation, projections data are available for the parent occupation, Other Information and Organisation Professionals, under the outlook section.
Earnings and hours
Around 85% of people employed as Patents Examiners work full-time hours, in all their jobs combined. This is 19 percentage points above the all jobs average (66%).
Full-time workers work an average of 40 hours per week in their main job. This is 4 hours less than the all jobs average (44 hours per week).
Sources:Full-time share and full-time hours: ABS, 2016 Census, customised report. Compared to the all jobs average.
Most Patents Examiners work in the Public administration and safety industry.
Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report.
Employment across Australia
Employment by State and Territory (% Share)
|State||Patents Examiners||All Jobs Average|
Around 93% of Patents Examiners live in capital cities, compared with the all jobs average of 62%.
The Australian Capital Territory has a large share of employment relative to its population size.
The region with the largest share of workers is Australian Capital Territory.
Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian states, territories and regions, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Age and gender
The median age of Patents Examiners is 38 years. This is similar to the all jobs average of 40 years.
A large share of workers are aged 35 to 44 years.
Females make up 35% of the workforce. This is 13 percentage points below the all jobs average of 48%.
Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile and gender share compared to the all jobs average.
Age Profile (% Share)
|Age Bracket||Patents Examiners||All Jobs Average|
|65 and Over||2.3||4.2|
Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Education, training and experience
A bachelor degree in engineering, chemical science, chemical engineering or another relevant field is needed to work as a Patents Examiner. Many workers have a postgraduate qualification.
- Course Seeker to search and compare higher education courses.
- ComparED to compare undergraduate and postgraduate student experiences and outcomes.
Highest Level of Education (% Share)
|Type of Qualification||Patents Examiners||All Jobs Average|
|Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate||61.6||10.1|
|Year 10 and below||0.0||12.5|
Source: ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Highest qualification completed by workers in this job (in any field of study). Qualifications needed by new workers might be different from the qualifications of workers already in the job.
Skills and Knowledge
Employers look for Other Information and Organisation Professionals who work well in a team, can communicate clearly and are reliable.
Skills can be improved through training or experience.
Listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions.
Writing things for co-workers or customers.
Reading work related information.
Talking to others.
Thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem.
45%Coordination with others
Being adaptable and coordinating work with other people.
Being able to use what you have learnt to solve problems now and again in the future.
Understanding why people react the way they do.
Managing your own and other peoples' time to get work done.
Keeping track of how well work is progressing so you can make changes or improvements.
Looking for ways to help people.
39%Judgment and decision making
Figuring out the pros and cons of different options and choosing the best one.
37%Complex problem solving
Noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it.
Talking people into changing their minds or their behaviour.
Teaching people how to do something.
Figuring out the best way to teach or learn something new.
Bringing people together and trying to sort out their differences.
32%Management of personnel resources
Motivating, developing, and directing people as they work, and choosing the best people for the job.
Figuring out how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect it.
Measuring how well a system is working and how to improve it.
These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.
Word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office work.
English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
66%Law and government
How our laws and courts work. Government rules and regulations, and the political system.
55%Computers and electronics
Circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
48%Customer and personal service
Understanding customer needs, providing good quality service, and measuring customer satisfaction.
Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.
38%Education and training
Curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
37%Administration and management
Business principles involved in strategic planning, leadership, and coordinating people and resources.
35%Communications and media
Media production, communication, and dissemination. Includes written, spoken, and visual media.
Human behaviour; differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; research methods; assessing and treating disorders.
26%Therapy and counselling
Diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and career counselling and guidance.
24%Personnel and human resources
Recruiting and training people, managing pay and other entitlements (like sick leave), and negotiating pay and conditions.
24%Medicine and dentistry
Diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities, including preventive health-care measures.
Foreign (non-English) language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition and grammar, and pronunciation.
19%Economics and accounting
Economics and accounting, the financial markets, banking and checking and reporting of financial data.
18%Public safety and security
Use of equipment, rules and ideas to protect people, data, property, and institutions.
Transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.
Describing land, sea, and air, including their physical characteristics, locations, how they work together, and the location of plant, animal, and human life.
Moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road.
8%Sociology and anthropology
Group behaviour and dynamics, societal trends and influences, human migrations, ethnicity, cultures and their history and origins.
Workers use these physical and mental abilities..
See details that are up-close (within a few feet).
Listen to and understand what people say.
Communicate by speaking.
Read and understand written information.
Write in a way that people can understand.
Come up with different ways of grouping things.
Identify and understand the speech of another person.
Use general rules to find answers or solve problems logically.
Notice when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong, even if you can't solve the problem.
Use lots of detailed information to come up with answers or make general rules.
46%Sorting or ordering
Order or arrange things in a pattern or sequence (e.g., numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
Speak clearly so others can understand you.
41%Flexibility of closure
See a pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) hidden in other distracting material.
See details that are far away.
Come up with unusual or clever ideas, or creative ways to solve a problem.
Pay attention to something without being distracted.
Come up with a number of ideas about a topic, even if the ideas aren't very good.
Remember things like words, numbers, pictures, and procedures.
Use your eyes to quickly compare groups of letters, numbers, pictures, or other things.
Do two or more things at the same time.
These are kinds of activities workers regularly do in this job.
79%Planning and prioritising work
Deciding on goals and putting together a detailed plan to get the work done.
71%Researching and investigating
Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.
70%Communicating within a team
Giving information to co-workers by telephone, in writing, or in person.
69%Keeping your knowledge up-to-date
Keeping up-to-date with technology and new ideas.
69%Building good relationships
Building good working relationships and keeping them over time.
68%Collecting and organising information
Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or checking information or data.
65%Making sense of information and ideas
Looking at, working with, and understanding data or information.
65%Communicating with the public
Giving information to the public, business or government by telephone, in writing, or in person.
61%Checking compliance with standards
Deciding whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
60%Documenting or recording information
Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
56%Making decisions and solving problems
Using information to work out the best solution and solve problems.
56%Working with computers
Using computers to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
55%Providing office support
Doing day-to-day office work such as filing and processing paperwork.
54%Looking for changes over time
Comparing objects, actions, or events. Looking for differences between them or changes over time.
53%Scheduling work and activities
Working out the timing of events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others.
51%Monitoring people, processes and things
Checking objects, actions, or events, and keeping an eye out for problems.
48%Explaining things to people
Helping people to understand and use information.
41%Assessing and evaluating things
Working out the value, importance, or quality of things, services or people.
40%Working with the public
Greeting or serving customers, clients or guests, and public speaking or performing.
40%Coming up with systems and processes
Deciding on goals and figuring out what you need to do to achieve them.
Interests and demands
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.
Interests are the style or type of work we prefer to do. All interest areas are shown below.
Following set procedures and routines. Working with numbers and details more than with ideas, usually following rules.
Ideas and thinking. Searching for facts and figuring out problems in your head.
Starting up and carrying out projects. Leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes require risk taking and often deal with business.
Working with people. Helping or providing service to others.
Working with forms, designs and patterns. Often need self-expression and can be done without following rules.
Practical, hands-on work. Often with plants and animals, or materials like wood, tools, and machinery.
Serve and work with others. Workers usually get along well with each other, do things to help other people, and are rarely pressured to do things that go against their sense of right and wrong.
Supportive management that stands behind employees. Workers are treated fairly by their company, they are supported by management, and have supervisors who train them well.
Job security and good working conditions. There is usually a steady flow of interesting work, and the pay and conditions are generally good.
Results oriented. Workers are able to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment.
Advancement and the potential to lead. Workers are recognised for the work that they do, they may give directions and instructions to others, and they are looked up to in their company and their community.
Work alone and make decisions. Workers are able to try out their own ideas, make decisions on their own, and work with little or no supervision.
97%Letters and memos
Write letters and memos.
Use electronic mail.
97%Contact with people
Have contact with people by telephone, face-to-face, or any other way.
Talk on the telephone.
94%Indoors, heat controlled
Work indoors with access to heating or cooling.
Talk with people face-to-face.
Work to strict deadlines.
Work with people in a group or team.
87%Spend time sitting
Spend time sitting at work.
87%Being exact or accurate
Be very exact or highly accurate.
Have freedom to decide on tasks, priorities, and goals.
83%Freedom to make decisions
Have freedom to make decision on your own.
81%Frequent decision making
Frequently make decisions that impact other people.
78%Contact with the public
Work with customers or the public.
76%Impact of decisions
Make decisions that have a large impact on other people.
75%Lead or coordinate a team
Lead others to do work activities.
74%Repeating same tasks
Repeat the same tasks or activities (e.g., key entry) over and over, without stopping.
73%Consequence of error
Work where mistakes have serious consequences.
61%Making repetitive motions
Spend time making repetitive motions.
59%Angry or unpleasant people
Deal with unpleasant, angry, or rude people.
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The skills and importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 23-2011.00 - Paralegals and Legal Assistants.