Surveyors and Spatial Scientists

ANZSCO ID 2322

Overview

Snapshot

Employed
16,300
Future Growth
14.6%
Weekly Earnings
$1,907
Full-Time Share
87%
Female Share
13%
Average age
40

Summary

Surveyors and Spatial Scientists plan, direct and conduct survey work to determine and delineate boundaries and features of tracts of land, marine floors and underground works, prepare and revise maps, charts and other geographic products, and analyse, present and maintain geographical information about locations in space and time.

Tasks

  • designing and compiling map manuscripts using digital and graphical source material, including aerial photographs, satellite imagery, survey documents, existing maps and records, reports and statistics

  • advising Surveyors and other professionals on the data requirements for map production, and on the aesthetic, technical and economic considerations of scales, details to be illustrated, place names and reproduction techniques

  • supervising and coordinating the work of cartographic technicians in the production and reproduction of maps

  • determining the position of points of interest on the earth's surface including marine floors, and preparing the final product data in digital form

  • supervising the preparation of plans, maps, charts and drawings to give pictorial representations and managing automated spatial information systems

  • undertaking research and development of surveying and photogrammetric measurement systems, cadastral systems and land information systems

  • planning and designing land subdivision projects and negotiating details with local governments and other authorities

  • advising Architects, Engineering Professionals, environmental and other scientists or other relevant professionals on the technical requirements of surveying, mapping and spatial information systems

  • compiling and evaluating data, interpreting codes of practice, and writing reports concerning survey measurement, land use and tenure

  • preparing site plans and survey reports required for conveyancing and land ownership matters

Characteristics

Job Type
Professionals
Skill Level
Very high skill
ANZSCO Occupation group
Unemployment Rate
Average
Industries
Pathway(s)
  • University
  • Vocational Education and Training (VET)
Interests
  • Practical
  • Analytical
  • Administrative
Physical Demand
  • Light
  • Medium

Outlook

Employment Outlook

The NSC produces employment projections to show where likely future job opportunities may be. The latest data are for the five years from November 2021 to November 2026. Over this period, the number of workers:

  • is expected to grow strongly
  • is likely to reach 16,800 by 2026.
  • Source: National Skills Commission Employment Projections to 2026.

    Notes: The number employed includes people who work in this occupation as their main job. People who work in more than one job are counted against the occupation they work the most hours in.

    Employment projections figures are rounded to the nearest 100. Calculations based on these rounded figures may result in differences to the numbers that are displayed on this page. Employment projections data (including occupations) can be downloaded from the Employment Projections page.

Projected Change
14.6%
(or 2,100 jobs)
From
14,700
in 2021
To
16,800
in 2026

Number of Workers

Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, ABS seasonally adjusted data to November 2021 and National Skills Commission Employment Projections to 2026.
Year Employment
2011 12,500
2012 14,200
2013 17,200
2014 12,700
2015 14,500
2016 12,600
2017 11,600
2018 12,500
2019 15,300
2020 16,200
2021 14,700
2026 16,800

Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, ABS seasonally adjusted data to November 2021 and National Skills Commission Employment Projections to 2026.


Earnings and hours

Working arrangements

  • Around 87% of people employed as Surveyors and Spatial Scientists work full-time hours, in all their jobs combined. This is 21 percentage points above the all jobs average (66%).

    Full-time workers work an average of 45 hours per week in their main job. This is similar to the all jobs average (44 hours per week).

    More than half of workers regularly work overtime or extra hours (either paid or unpaid).

    Median full-time earnings are $1,907 per week, this is much higher than the all jobs median ($1,593):

    • 3 in 4 workers earn more than $1,672
    • 1 in 4 earn more than $2,080

    Median hourly earnings are $50, this is more than the all jobs median ($41 per hour).

    Sources: Full-time share and full-time hours: ABS, 2016 Census, customised report. Compared to the all jobs average. Overtime hours: ABS, Characteristics of Employment, 2021. Full-time median earnings and median hourly earnings: ABS, Survey of Employee Earnings and Hours, May 2021. Compared to all jobs median.

Weekly Earnings (Before Tax)

Source: Based on ABS Survey of Employee Earnings and Hours, May 2021, Customised Report. Median weekly total cash earnings for full-time non-managerial employees paid at the adult rate. Earnings are before tax and include amounts salary sacrificed. 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.
Earnings Surveyors and Spatial Scientists All Jobs Average
Full-Time Earnings 1,907 1,593
Total Earnings 0 0

Source: Based on ABS Survey of Employee Earnings and Hours, May 2021, Customised Report. Median weekly total cash earnings for full-time non-managerial employees paid at the adult rate. Earnings are before tax and include amounts salary sacrificed. 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.


Industries

Main industries

1
Professional, Scientific and Technical Services
61.3%
2
Public Administration and Safety
16.1%
3
Construction
8.4%
4
Electricity, Gas, Water and Waste Services
7.1%
5
Other industries
7.1%

Regions

Employment across Australia

NSW

29.9% All occupations: 31.6%

VIC

19.7% All occupations: 25.6%

QLD

22.1% All occupations: 20.0%

SA

5.2% All occupations: 7.0%

WA

16.9% All occupations: 10.8%

TAS

2.5% All occupations: 2.0%

NT

1.3% All occupations: 1.0%

ACT

2.5% All occupations: 1.9%

Employment by State and Territory (% Share)

State Surveyors and Spatial Scientists All Jobs Average
NSW 29.9 31.6
VIC 19.7 25.6
QLD 22.1 20.0
SA 5.2 7.0
WA 16.9 10.8
TAS 2.5 2.0
NT 1.3 1.0
ACT 2.5 1.9


  • Around 60% of Surveyors and Spatial Scientists live in capital cities, similar to the all jobs average of 62%.

    Western Australia has a large share of employment relative to its population size.

    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.


Worker profile

Age and gender

Age In Years
40
All Jobs Average is 40
Female Share
13%
All Jobs Average is 48%
  • The median age of Surveyors and Spatial Scientists is 40 years. This is the same as the all jobs average.

    A large share of workers are aged 25 to 34 years.

    Females make up 13% of the workforce. This is 35 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)

Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Age Bracket Surveyors and Spatial Scientists All Jobs Average
15-19 0.8 5.0
20-24 5.9 9.3
25-34 28.1 22.9
35-44 26.3 22.0
45-54 19.7 21.6
55-59 8.5 9.0
60-64 7.0 6.0
65 and Over 3.6 4.2
Median Age 40 40

Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.


Employment Pathways

Education, training and experience

A formal qualification in a relevant field is usually needed to work as a Surveyor or Spatial Scientist. University and Vocational Education and Training (VET) are both common study pathways.

Visit

  • Course Seeker to search and compare higher education courses.
  • ComparED to compare undergraduate and postgraduate student experiences and outcomes.
  • My Skills to compare Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses, providers and student outcomes.
  • AAPathways website to explore Construction, Plumbing and Services VET training pathways.

Highest Level of Education (% Share)

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.
Type of Qualification Surveyors and Spatial Scientists All Jobs Average
Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate 11.5 10.1
Bachelor degree 44.2 21.8
Advanced Diploma/Diploma 24.0 11.6
Certificate III/IV 7.9 21.1
Year 12 9.4 18.1
Year 11 1.1 4.8
Year 10 and below 1.8 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 Surveyors and Spatial Scientists who work well in a team, are motivated and organised.

Skills

Skills can be improved through training or experience.

  • 57%

    Reading comprehension

    Reading work related information.

  • 55%

    Mathematics

    Using maths to solve problems.

  • 55%

    Critical thinking

    Thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem.

  • 54%

    Management of personnel resources

    Motivating, developing, and directing people as they work, and choosing the best people for the job.

  • 52%

    Coordination with others

    Being adaptable and coordinating work with other people.

  • 52%

    Instructing

    Teaching people how to do something.

  • 52%

    Time management

    Managing your own and other peoples' time to get work done.

  • 52%

    Writing

    Writing things for co-workers or customers.

  • 52%

    Monitoring

    Keeping track of how well work is progressing so you can make changes or improvements.

  • 50%

    Active listening

    Listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions.

  • 50%

    Learning strategies

    Figuring out the best way to teach or learn something new.

  • 50%

    Speaking

    Talking to others.

  • 48%

    Active learning

    Being able to use what you have learnt to solve problems now and again in the future.

  • 48%

    Complex problem solving

    Noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it.

  • 48%

    Judgment and decision making

    Figuring out the pros and cons of different options and choosing the best one.

  • 48%

    Operation monitoring

    Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.

  • 48%

    Science

    Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.

  • 41%

    Operation and control

    Controlling equipment or systems.

  • 41%

    Systems analysis

    Figuring out how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect it.

  • 39%

    Social perceptiveness

    Understanding why people react the way they do.


Knowledge

These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.

  • 82%

    Mathematics

    Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.

  • 80%

    Geography

    Describing land, sea, and air, including their physical characteristics, locations, how they work together, and the location of plant, animal, and human life.

  • 73%

    Technical design

    Design techniques, tools, and principles used to make detailed technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.

  • 70%

    Computers and electronics

    Circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.

  • 68%

    Education and training

    Curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.

  • 67%

    Engineering and technology

    Use engineering, science and technology to design and produce goods and services.

  • 67%

    Law and government

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

  • 66%

    Administration and management

    Business principles involved in strategic planning, leadership, and coordinating people and resources.

  • 64%

    Building and construction

    Materials, and methods used to construct or repair houses, buildings, or other structures like highways and roads.

  • 62%

    Clerical

    Word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office work.

  • 62%

    Customer and personal service

    Understanding customer needs, providing good quality service, and measuring customer satisfaction.

  • 59%

    English language

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

  • 57%

    Personnel and human resources

    Recruiting and training people, managing pay and other entitlements (like sick leave), and negotiating pay and conditions.

  • 52%

    History and archeology

    Events of the past, their causes, how we learn about them, and how they influence the way we live today.

  • 48%

    Sales and marketing

    Showing, promoting, and selling including marketing strategy, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.

  • 45%

    Public safety and security

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

  • 42%

    Economics and accounting

    Economics and accounting, the financial markets, banking and checking and reporting of financial data.

  • 41%

    Physics

    The physical laws of matter, motion and energy, and how they interact through space and time.

  • 39%

    Mechanical

    Machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.

  • 35%

    Telecommunications

    Transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.


Abilities

Workers use these physical and mental abilities..

  • 64%

    Far vision

    See details that are far away.

  • 63%

    Oral expression

    Communicate by speaking.

  • 63%

    Working with numbers

    Add, subtract, multiply, or divide.

  • 61%

    Mathematics

    Choose the right maths method or formula to solve a problem.

  • 61%

    Near vision

    See details that are up-close (within a few feet).

  • 61%

    Oral comprehension

    Listen to and understand what people say.

  • 57%

    Flexibility of closure

    See a pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) hidden in other distracting material.

  • 55%

    Deductive reasoning

    Use general rules to find answers or solve problems logically.

  • 55%

    Written comprehension

    Read and understand written information.

  • 55%

    Sorting or ordering

    Order or arrange things in a pattern or sequence (e.g., numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).

  • 54%

    Written expression

    Write in a way that people can understand.

  • 54%

    Visualization

    Imagine how something will look after it is moved around or changed.

  • 52%

    Categorising

    Come up with different ways of grouping things.

  • 52%

    Inductive reasoning

    Use lots of detailed information to come up with answers or make general rules.

  • 50%

    Speech clarity

    Speak clearly so others can understand you.

  • 50%

    Depth perception

    Decide which thing is closer or further away from you, or decide how far away it is.

  • 50%

    Problem spotting

    Notice when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong, even if you can't solve the problem.

  • 50%

    Speech recognition

    Identify and understand the speech of another person.

  • 46%

    Arm-hand steadiness

    Keep your hand or arm steady.

  • 46%

    Finger dexterity

    Put together small parts with your fingers.


Activities

These are kinds of activities workers regularly do in this job.

  • 82%

    Collecting and organising information

    Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or checking information or data.

  • 82%

    Making decisions and solving problems

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

  • 80%

    Keeping your knowledge up-to-date

    Keeping up-to-date with technology and new ideas.

  • 79%

    Making sense of information and ideas

    Looking at, working with, and understanding data or information.

  • 75%

    Coordinating the work of a team

    Getting members of a group to work together to finish a task.

  • 75%

    Documenting or recording information

    Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.

  • 74%

    Planning and prioritising work

    Deciding on goals and putting together a detailed plan to get the work done.

  • 74%

    Checking compliance with standards

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

  • 74%

    Researching and investigating

    Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.

  • 73%

    Communicating within a team

    Giving information to co-workers by telephone, in writing, or in person.

  • 71%

    Communicating with the public

    Giving information to the public, business or government by telephone, in writing, or in person.

  • 69%

    Building good relationships

    Building good working relationships and keeping them over time.

  • 69%

    Coaching and developing others

    Working out the needs of others and coaching, mentoring, or helping them to improve.

  • 69%

    Scheduling work and activities

    Working out the timing of events, programs, and activities, as well as the work of others.

  • 68%

    Guiding and directing staff

    Guiding and directing staff, including setting and monitoring performance standards.

  • 68%

    Working with the public

    Greeting or serving customers, clients or guests, and public speaking or performing.

  • 65%

    Training and teaching others

    Understanding the needs of others, developing training programs, and teaching or instructing.

  • 64%

    Working with computers

    Using computers to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.

  • 64%

    Looking for changes over time

    Comparing objects, actions, or events. Looking for differences between them or changes over time.

  • 63%

    Explaining things to people

    Helping people to understand and use information.


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

Interests are the style or type of work we prefer to do. All interest areas are shown below.

  • 95%

    Practical

    Practical, hands-on work. Often with plants and animals, or materials like wood, tools, and machinery.

  • 71%

    Administrative

    Following set procedures and routines. Working with numbers and details more than with ideas, usually following rules.

  • 71%

    Analytical

    Ideas and thinking. Searching for facts and figuring out problems in your head.

  • 48%

    Creative

    Working with forms, designs and patterns. Often need self-expression and can be done without following rules.

  • 29%

    Enterprising

    Starting up and carrying out projects. Leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes require risk taking and often deal with business.

  • 19%

    Helping

    Working with people. Helping or providing service to others.


Values

Work values are important to a person’s feeling of satisfaction. All six values are shown below.
  • 76%

    Relationships

    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.

  • 71%

    Independence

    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.

  • 57%

    Achievement

    Results oriented. Workers are able to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment.

  • 57%

    Support

    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.

  • 57%

    Working conditions

    Job security and good working conditions. There is usually a steady flow of interesting work, and the pay and conditions are generally good.

  • 52%

    Recognition

    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.


Demands

The physical and social demands that workers face most often are shown below:
  • 99%

    Being exact or accurate

    Be very exact or highly accurate.

  • 98%

    Telephone

    Talk on the telephone.

  • 97%

    Electronic mail

    Use electronic mail.

  • 97%

    Face-to-face discussions

    Talk with people face-to-face.

  • 92%

    Outdoors, exposed to weather

    Work outdoors, exposed to the weather.

  • 86%

    Letters and memos

    Write letters and memos.

  • 86%

    Teamwork

    Work with people in a group or team.

  • 84%

    Impact of decisions

    Make decisions that have a large impact on other people.

  • 84%

    In an enclosed vehicle or equipment

    Work in a closed vehicle (e.g., car).

  • 82%

    Frequent decision making

    Frequently make decisions that impact other people.

  • 81%

    Contact with the public

    Work with customers or the public.

  • 81%

    Freedom to make decisions

    Have freedom to make decision on your own.

  • 81%

    Health and safety of others

    Take responsibility for the health and safety of others.

  • 79%

    Contact with people

    Have contact with people by telephone, face-to-face, or any other way.

  • 79%

    Repeating same tasks

    Repeat the same tasks or activities (e.g., key entry) over and over, without stopping.

  • 76%

    Time pressure

    Work to strict deadlines.

  • 76%

    Responsible for outcomes

    Take responsibility for the results of other people's work.

  • 75%

    Wear common protective or safety equipment

    Wear equipment like safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hard hats or life jackets.

  • 74%

    Very hot or cold temperatures

    Work in very hot or cold temperatures.

  • 72%

    Unstructured work

    Have freedom to decide on tasks, priorities, and goals.

Occupational Information Network
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, 17-1022.00 - Surveyors.


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