Chefs

ANZSCO ID 3513

Overview

Snapshot

Employed
108,800
Future Growth
13.9%
Weekly Earnings
$1,250
Full-Time Share
72%
Female Share
25%
Average age
35

Summary

Chefs plan and organise the preparation and cooking of food in dining and catering establishments.

Specialisations: Chef de Partie, Commis Chef, Demi Chef, Second Chef, Sous Chef.

A certificate IV in commercial cookery is needed to work as a Chef. This course is often completed as part of an apprenticeship. Executive Chefs, Head Chefs and Sous Chefs often complete additional study, such as a diploma of hospitality management.

Tasks

  • planning menus, estimating food and labour costs, and ordering food supplies

  • monitoring quality of dishes at all stages of preparation and presentation

  • discussing food preparation issues with Managers, Dietitians and kitchen and waiting staff

  • demonstrating techniques and advising on cooking procedures

  • preparing and cooking food

  • explaining and enforcing hygiene regulations

  • may select and train staff

  • may freeze and preserve foods

Characteristics

Job Type
Technicians And Trades Workers
Skill Level
High skill
ANZSCO Occupation group
Unemployment Rate
Above average
Industries
Pathway(s)
  • Vocational Education and Training (VET)
Interests
  • Practical
  • Creative
  • Enterprising
Physical Demand
  • Medium

Outlook

Employment Outlook

JSA 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 92,300 by 2026.

Source: Jobs and Skills Australia 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
13.9%
(or 11,200 jobs)
From
81,100
in 2021
To
92,300
in 2026

Number of Workers

Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, ABS seasonally adjusted data to November 2021 and Jobs and Skills Australia Employment Projections to 2026.
Year Employment
2011 74,200
2012 74,100
2013 82,000
2014 85,600
2015 84,100
2016 83,000
2017 93,400
2018 97,900
2019 106,800
2020 91,300
2021 81,100
2026 92,300

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


Earnings and hours

Working arrangements

  • Around 72% of people employed as Chefs work full-time hours, in all their jobs combined. This is 6 percentage points above the all jobs average (66%).

    Full-time workers work an average of 46 hours per week in their main job. This is similar to the all jobs average (44 hours per week).

    Median full-time earnings are $1,250 per week, this is much lower than the all jobs median ($1,593):

    • 3 in 4 workers earn more than $1,137
    • 1 in 4 earn more than $1,442

    Median hourly earnings are $33, this is lower 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. 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 Chefs All Jobs Average
Full-Time Earnings 1,250 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
Accommodation and Food Services
82.9%
2
Health Care and Social Assistance
6.9%
3
Manufacturing
2.0%
4
Arts and Recreation Services
2.0%
5
Other industries
6.1%

Regions

Employment across Australia

NSW

32.8% All occupations: 31.6%

VIC

26.8% All occupations: 25.6%

QLD

18.7% All occupations: 20.0%

SA

6.2% All occupations: 7.0%

WA

10.5% All occupations: 10.8%

TAS

2.0% All occupations: 2.0%

NT

1.0% All occupations: 1.0%

ACT

1.9% All occupations: 1.9%

Employment by State and Territory (% Share)

State Chefs All Jobs Average
NSW 32.8 31.6
VIC 26.8 25.6
QLD 18.7 20.0
SA 6.2 7.0
WA 10.5 10.8
TAS 2.0 2.0
NT 1.0 1.0
ACT 1.9 1.9



Worker profile

Age and gender

Age In Years
35
All Jobs Average is 40
Female Share
25%
All Jobs Average is 48%
  • The median age of Chefs is 35 years. This is younger than the all jobs average of 40 years.

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

    Females make up 25% of the workforce. This is 23 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 Chefs All Jobs Average
15-19 1.5 5.0
20-24 10.4 9.3
25-34 37.4 22.9
35-44 25.1 22.0
45-54 16.3 21.6
55-59 5.3 9.0
60-64 2.9 6.0
65 and Over 1.1 4.2
Median Age 35 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 certificate IV in commercial cookery is needed to work as a Chef. This course is often completed as part of an apprenticeship. Executive Chefs, Head Chefs and Sous Chefs often complete additional study, such as a diploma of hospitality management.

Visit

  • My Skills to compare Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses, providers and student outcomes.
  • AAPathways website to explore Tourism, Travel and Hospitality 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 Chefs All Jobs Average
Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate 1.9 10.1
Bachelor degree 10.7 21.8
Advanced Diploma/Diploma 17.1 11.6
Certificate III/IV 46.9 21.1
Year 12 13.6 18.1
Year 11 2.0 4.8
Year 10 and below 7.8 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 Chefs who are reliable, hardworking and have strong people skills.

Skills

Skills can be improved through training or experience.

  • 57%

    Coordination with others

    Being adaptable and coordinating work with other people.

  • 57%

    Monitoring

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

  • 55%

    Speaking

    Talking to others.

  • 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.

  • 54%

    Social perceptiveness

    Understanding why people react the way they do.

  • 52%

    Time management

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

  • 50%

    Active learning

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

  • 50%

    Active listening

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

  • 50%

    Negotiation

    Bringing people together and trying to sort out their differences.

  • 50%

    Persuasion

    Talking people into changing their minds or their behaviour.

  • 48%

    Serving others

    Looking for ways to help people.

  • 48%

    Learning strategies

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

  • 46%

    Instructing

    Teaching people how to do something.

  • 46%

    Management of material resources

    Providing the right equipment, facilities, and materials needed to do work.

  • 45%

    Management of financial resources

    Figuring out how money is needed to do something, and keeping track of the money that's being spent.

  • 43%

    Judgment and decision making

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

  • 43%

    Complex problem solving

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

  • 41%

    Mathematics

    Using maths to solve problems.

  • 39%

    Quality control analysis

    Doing tests and checking products, services, or processes to make sure they are working properly.


Knowledge

These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.

  • 66%

    Food production

    Planting, growing, and harvesting food (both plant and animal), including storage and handling.

  • 63%

    Production and processing

    Raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and ways of making and distributing goods.

  • 62%

    Education and training

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

  • 60%

    Administration and management

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

  • 58%

    Customer and personal service

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

  • 55%

    Mathematics

    Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.

  • 54%

    Personnel and human resources

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

  • 48%

    English language

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

  • 47%

    Public safety and security

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

  • 47%

    Sales and marketing

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

  • 45%

    Chemistry

    Chemical composition, structure, and properties. How chemicals are made, used, mixed, and can change.

  • 42%

    Computers and electronics

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

  • 42%

    Clerical

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

  • 41%

    Psychology

    Human behaviour; differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; research methods; assessing and treating disorders.

  • 38%

    Technical design

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

  • 33%

    Economics and accounting

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

  • 32%

    Communications and media

    Media production, communication, and dissemination. Includes written, spoken, and visual media.

  • 31%

    Foreign language

    Foreign (non-English) language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition and grammar, and pronunciation.

  • 28%

    Law and government

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

  • 26%

    Transportation

    Moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road.


Abilities

Workers use these physical and mental abilities..

  • 57%

    Oral comprehension

    Listen to and understand what people say.

  • 57%

    Oral expression

    Communicate by speaking.

  • 54%

    Deductive reasoning

    Use general rules to find answers or solve problems logically.

  • 54%

    Problem spotting

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

  • 48%

    Inductive reasoning

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

  • 48%

    Originality

    Come up with unusual or clever ideas, or creative ways to solve a problem.

  • 48%

    Written comprehension

    Read and understand written information.

  • 48%

    Written expression

    Write in a way that people can understand.

  • 46%

    Near vision

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

  • 46%

    Sorting or ordering

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

  • 46%

    Speech recognition

    Identify and understand the speech of another person.

  • 45%

    Brainstorming

    Come up with a number of ideas about a topic, even if the ideas aren't very good.

  • 45%

    Speech clarity

    Speak clearly so others can understand you.

  • 45%

    Categorising

    Come up with different ways of grouping things.

  • 43%

    Trunk strength

    Use your abdominal and lower back muscles a number of times without 'giving out' or fatiguing.

  • 43%

    Arm-hand steadiness

    Keep your hand or arm steady.

  • 43%

    Manual dexterity

    Quickly move your hand to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.

  • 43%

    Mathematics

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

  • 43%

    Working with numbers

    Add, subtract, multiply, or divide.

  • 41%

    Colour discrimination

    Notice differences between colours, including shades of colour and brightness.


Activities

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

  • 74%

    Planning and prioritising work

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

  • 67%

    Handling and moving objects

    Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, moving and manipulating objects.

  • 67%

    Building good relationships

    Building good working relationships and keeping them over time.

  • 67%

    Coaching and developing others

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

  • 65%

    Thinking creatively

    Using your own ideas for developing, designing, or creating something new.

  • 64%

    Guiding and directing staff

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

  • 63%

    Communicating within a team

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

  • 62%

    Negotiating and resolving conflicts

    Handling complaints and disagreements, and negotiating with people.

  • 62%

    Coordinating the work of a team

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

  • 60%

    Training and teaching others

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

  • 60%

    Managing payments and orders

    Monitoring and controlling resources and the spending of money.

  • 59%

    Scheduling work and activities

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

  • 58%

    Keeping your knowledge up-to-date

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

  • 57%

    Leading and encouraging a team

    Encouraging and building trust, respect, and cooperation among team members.

  • 56%

    Doing physically active work

    Use your arms, legs and whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling objects.

  • 54%

    Making decisions and solving problems

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

  • 53%

    Researching and investigating

    Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.

  • 49%

    Monitoring people, processes and things

    Checking objects, actions, or events, and keeping an eye out for problems.

  • 48%

    Assessing and evaluating things

    Working out the value, importance, or quality of things, services or people.

  • 45%

    Estimating amounts, costs and resources

    Working out sizes, distances, amounts, time, costs, resources, or materials needed for a task.


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.

  • 100%

    Enterprising

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

  • 81%

    Practical

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

  • 67%

    Creative

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

  • 48%

    Helping

    Working with people. Helping or providing service to others.

  • 38%

    Administrative

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

  • 19%

    Analytical

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


Values

Work values are important to a person’s feeling of satisfaction. All six values are shown below.
  • 86%

    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.

  • 76%

    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.

  • 71%

    Achievement

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

  • 67%

    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.

  • 64%

    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%

    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.


Demands

The physical and social demands that workers face most often are shown below:
  • 98%

    Face-to-face discussions

    Talk with people face-to-face.

  • 97%

    Telephone

    Talk on the telephone.

  • 97%

    Time pressure

    Work to strict deadlines.

  • 96%

    Spend time standing

    Spend time standing at work.

  • 96%

    Electronic mail

    Use electronic mail.

  • 94%

    Contact with people

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

  • 93%

    Teamwork

    Work with people in a group or team.

  • 89%

    Frequent decision making

    Frequently make decisions that impact other people.

  • 88%

    Minor burns, cuts, bites, or stings

    Be exposed to minor burns, cuts, bites, or stings.

  • 88%

    Lead or coordinate a team

    Lead others to do work activities.

  • 87%

    Health and safety of others

    Take responsibility for the health and safety of others.

  • 84%

    Physically close to people

    Work physically close to other people.

  • 84%

    Using your hands to handle, control, or feel

    Spend time using your hands to handle, control, or feel objects, tools or controls.

  • 83%

    Making repetitive motions

    Spend time making repetitive motions.

  • 83%

    Responsible for outcomes

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

  • 83%

    Very hot or cold temperatures

    Work in very hot or cold temperatures.

  • 81%

    Competition

    Compete with others, or be aware of competitive pressures.

  • 81%

    Loud or uncomfortable sounds

    Be exposed to noises and sounds that are distracting or uncomfortable.

  • 80%

    Freedom to make decisions

    Have freedom to make decision on your own.

  • 78%

    Being exact or accurate

    Be very exact or highly accurate.

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, 35-1011.00 - Chefs and Head Cooks.


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