Aircraft Maintenance Engineers
Aircraft Maintenance Engineers maintain and repair aircraft structures, and avionic and mechanical systems.
dismantling, inspecting, testing, repairing and reassembling aircraft engines, ancillary motors and engine accessories, electrical systems, and subassemblies of aircraft frames
installing electrical circuits and equipment
testing aircraft communication equipment, aircraft instrumentation and electronic systems using electronic testing equipment and specialised test apparatus
replacing and testing aircraft oxygen system components
assembling parts and subassemblies of aircraft frames
conducting routine pre-flight inspections of engines, aircraft frames and mechanical systems
maintaining records of action taken
may manufacture aircraft electrical, instrument and radio hardware components
Vocational Education and Training (VET)
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 very strongly
- is likely to reach 9,400 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.
Number of Workers
Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, ABS seasonally adjusted data to November 2021 and National Skills Commission Employment Projections to 2026.
Earnings and hours
Around 94% of people employed as Aircraft Maintenance Engineers work full-time hours, in all their jobs combined. This is 28 percentage points above the all jobs average (66%).
Full-time workers work an average of 43 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 $2,694 per week, this is much higher than the all jobs median ($1,593):
- 3 in 4 workers earn more than $2,028
- 1 in 4 earn more than $3,178
Median hourly earnings are $70, this is much 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)
|Earnings||Aircraft Maintenance Engineers||All Jobs Average|
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.
Employment across Australia
Employment by State and Territory (% Share)
|State||Aircraft Maintenance Engineers||All Jobs Average|
Around 47% of Aircraft Maintenance Engineers live outside of capital cities, compared with the all jobs average of 38%.
Queensland, New South Wales and the Northern Territory have a large share of employment relative to their population size.
The regions with the largest share of workers are:
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 Aircraft Maintenance Engineers 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 3% of the workforce. This is 45 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||Aircraft Maintenance Engineers||All Jobs Average|
|65 and Over||2.5||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 certificate IV in a relevant aeroskills course is needed to work as an Aircraft Maintenance Engineer. This course is often completed as part of an apprenticeship.
- My Skills to compare Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses, providers and student outcomes.
- AAPathways website to explore Aeroskills Industry and Aviation Industry VET training pathways.
Highest Level of Education (% Share)
|Type of Qualification||Aircraft Maintenance Engineers||All Jobs Average|
|Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate||2.5||10.1|
|Year 10 and below||1.1||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 Aircraft Maintenance Engineers who are reliable, work well in a team and have a strong work ethic.
Skills can be improved through training or experience.
Maintaining equipment and deciding what maintenance will be needed in the future.
Fixing machines or systems.
Thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem.
Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
Reading work related information.
Figuring out why a machine or system went wrong and working out what to do about it.
55%Complex problem solving
Noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it.
55%Quality control analysis
Doing tests and checking products, services, or processes to make sure they are working properly.
Listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions.
48%Judgment and decision making
Figuring out the pros and cons of different options and choosing the best one.
46%Operation and control
Controlling equipment or systems.
Talking to others.
Figuring out how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect it.
Keeping track of how well work is progressing so you can make changes or improvements.
Being able to use what you have learnt to solve problems now and again in the future.
Deciding on the kind of tools and equipment needed to do a job.
43%Coordination with others
Being adaptable and coordinating work with other people.
Teaching people how to do something.
Understanding why people react the way they do.
Looking for ways to help people.
These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.
Machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
57%Engineering and technology
Use engineering, science and technology to design and produce goods and services.
Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.
Chemical composition, structure, and properties. How chemicals are made, used, mixed, and can change.
51%Customer and personal service
Understanding customer needs, providing good quality service, and measuring customer satisfaction.
The physical laws of matter, motion and energy, and how they interact through space and time.
Moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road.
Design techniques, tools, and principles used to make detailed technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
46%Public safety and security
Use of equipment, rules and ideas to protect people, data, property, and institutions.
English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
43%Production and processing
Raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and ways of making and distributing goods.
41%Computers and electronics
Circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
41%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.
Word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office work.
33%Law and government
How our laws and courts work. Government rules and regulations, and the political system.
Human behaviour; differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; research methods; assessing and treating disorders.
26%Building and construction
Materials, and methods used to construct or repair houses, buildings, or other structures like highways and roads.
Transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.
14%Communications and media
Media production, communication, and dissemination. Includes written, spoken, and visual media.
Workers use these physical and mental abilities..
Put together small parts with your fingers.
Quickly move your hand to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
See details that are up-close (within a few feet).
Read and understand written information.
Quickly change the controls of a machine, car, truck or boat.
Notice when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong, even if you can't solve the problem.
57%Sorting or ordering
Order or arrange things in a pattern or sequence (e.g., numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
Imagine how something will look after it is moved around or changed.
Notice differences between colours, including shades of colour and brightness.
Use general rules to find answers or solve problems logically.
Use lots of detailed information to come up with answers or make general rules.
Use your arms and/or legs at the same time while sitting, standing, or lying down.
Listen to and understand what people say.
Keep your hand or arm steady.
Communicate by speaking.
52%Flexibility of closure
See a pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) hidden in other distracting material.
Use your eyes to quickly compare groups of letters, numbers, pictures, or other things.
Tell the difference between sounds.
Write in a way that people can understand.
Identify and understand the speech of another person.
These are kinds of activities workers regularly do in this job.
81%Working with mechanical equipment
Servicing, repairing, adjusting, and testing machines, devices, moving parts, and equipment.
78%Keeping your knowledge up-to-date
Keeping up-to-date with technology and new ideas.
77%Handling and moving objects
Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, moving and manipulating objects.
75%Documenting or recording information
Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
75%Monitoring people, processes and things
Checking objects, actions, or events, and keeping an eye out for problems.
71%Controlling equipment or machines
Operating machines or processes either directly or using controls (not including computers or vehicles).
71%Checking for errors or defects
Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials for errors, problems or defects.
71%Looking for changes over time
Comparing objects, actions, or events. Looking for differences between them or changes over time.
70%Working with electronic equipment
Servicing, repairing, calibrating, regulating, fine-tuning, or testing electronic devices and equipment.
70%Checking compliance with standards
Deciding whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
68%Making decisions and solving problems
Using information to work out the best solution and solve problems.
67%Communicating within a team
Giving information to co-workers by telephone, in writing, or in person.
63%Assessing and evaluating things
Working out the value, importance, or quality of things, services or people.
63%Planning and prioritising work
Deciding on goals and putting together a detailed plan to get the work done.
63%Driving vehicles or equipment
Running, manoeuvring, navigating, or driving things like forklifts, vehicles, aircraft, or water craft.
61%Researching and investigating
Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.
60%Making sense of information and ideas
Looking at, working with, and understanding data or information.
58%Explaining things to people
Helping people to understand and use information.
57%Working with computers
Using computers to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
57%Collecting and organising information
Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or checking information or data.
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.
Practical, hands-on work. Often with plants and animals, or materials like wood, tools, and machinery.
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 forms, designs and patterns. Often need self-expression and can be done without following rules.
Working with people. Helping or providing service to others.
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.
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.
Results oriented. Workers are able to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment.
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.
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.
91%Loud or uncomfortable sounds
Be exposed to noises and sounds that are distracting or uncomfortable.
91%Wear common protective or safety equipment
Wear equipment like safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hard hats or life jackets.
90%Being exact or accurate
Be very exact or highly accurate.
90%Frequent decision making
Frequently make decisions that impact other people.
89%Impact of decisions
Make decisions that have a large impact on other people.
88%Consequence of error
Work where mistakes have serious consequences.
85%Exposure to contaminants
Be exposed to pollutants, gases, dust or odours.
Talk with people face-to-face.
Work to strict deadlines.
84%Indoors, not heat controlled
Work indoors without heating or cooling (e.g., warehouse without heat).
Have freedom to decide on tasks, priorities, and goals.
81%Freedom to make decisions
Have freedom to make decision on your own.
77%Using your hands to handle, control, or feel
Spend time using your hands to handle, control, or feel objects, tools or controls.
76%Spend time standing
Spend time standing at work.
76%Cramped work space
Work in an awkward position or in cramped work spaces.
Work near dangerous equipment like saws, machinery with open moving parts, or moving traffic.
75%Very hot or cold temperatures
Work in very hot or cold temperatures.
74%Repeating same tasks
Repeat the same tasks or activities (e.g., key entry) over and over, without stopping.
73%Bright or inadequate lighting
Work in extremely bright or dark lighting conditions.
Talk on the telephone.
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, 49-3011.00 - Aircraft Mechanics and Service Technicians.