Civil Engineers

ANZSCO ID 233211

Overview

Snapshot

Employed
21,300
Future Growth
N/A
Weekly Earnings
N/A
Full-Time Share
91%
Female Share
12%
Average age
35

Summary

Civil Engineers plan, design, organise and oversee the construction and operation of dams, bridges, pipelines, gas and water supply schemes, sewerage systems, airports and other civil engineering projects.

Specialisations: Airfield Engineer Officer (Air Force), Hydraulics Engineer.

A bachelor degree in civil engineering is needed to work as a Civil Engineer. Some workers have a postgraduate qualification.

Tasks

  • Determines construction methods, materials and quality standards, and drafts and interprets specifications, drawings, plans, construction methods and procedures.

  • Organises and directs site labour and the delivery of construction materials, plant and equipment, and establishes detailed programs for the co-ordination of site activities.

  • Studies architectural and engineering drawings and specifications to estimate total costs, and prepare detailed cost plans and estimates as tools to assist in budgetary control.

  • Monitors changes to designs, assesses effects on cost, and measures, values and negotiates variations to designs.

  • Analyses structural systems for both static and dynamic loads.

  • Designs structures to ensure they do not collapse, bend, twist or vibrate in undesirable ways.

  • Assesses present and future travel flow patterns taking into account population increases and needs changes.

  • Designs the physical aspects of transportation systems such as highways, railroads, urban transit, air transportation, logistical supply systems and their terminals.

Characteristics


Outlook

Employment Outlook

The NSC 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, Civil Engineering Professionals, under the outlook section.


Earnings and hours

Working arrangements

  • Around 91% of people employed as Civil Engineers work full-time hours, in all their jobs combined. This is 25 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).

    Sources:Full-time share and full-time hours: ABS, 2016 Census, customised report. Compared to the all jobs average.


Industries

Main industries

1
Construction
34.6%
2
Professional, Scientific and Technical Services
32.0%
3
Public Administration and Safety
15.2%
4
Electricity, Gas, Water and Waste Services
6.1%
5
Other industries
9.3%

Regions

Employment across Australia

NSW

33.7% All occupations: 31.6%

VIC

23.2% All occupations: 25.6%

QLD

23.2% All occupations: 20.0%

SA

4.6% All occupations: 7.0%

WA

11.4% All occupations: 10.8%

TAS

1.4% All occupations: 2.0%

NT

1.2% All occupations: 1.0%

ACT

1.4% All occupations: 1.9%

Employment by State and Territory (% Share)

State Civil Engineers All Jobs Average
NSW 33.7 31.6
VIC 23.2 25.6
QLD 23.2 20.0
SA 4.6 7.0
WA 11.4 10.8
TAS 1.4 2.0
NT 1.2 1.0
ACT 1.4 1.9



Worker profile

Age and gender

Age In Years
35
All Jobs Average is 40
Female Share
12%
All Jobs Average is 48%
  • The median age of Civil Engineers 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 12% of the workforce. This is 36 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 Civil Engineers All Jobs Average
15-19 0.2 5.0
20-24 10.0 9.3
25-34 38.1 22.9
35-44 23.3 22.0
45-54 14.5 21.6
55-59 5.5 9.0
60-64 4.7 6.0
65 and Over 3.6 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 bachelor degree in civil engineering is needed to work as a Civil Engineer. Some workers have a postgraduate qualification.

Registration may be required in some states and territories. In addition, Engineers Australia has a non-compulsory National Engineering Register.

Visit

  • Course Seeker to search and compare higher education courses.
  • ComparED to compare undergraduate and postgraduate student experiences and outcomes.

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 Civil Engineers All Jobs Average
Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate 19.7 10.1
Bachelor degree 66.7 21.8
Advanced Diploma/Diploma 5.6 11.6
Certificate III/IV 2.3 21.1
Year 12 5.2 18.1
Year 11 0.2 4.8
Year 10 and below 0.3 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 Civil Engineering Professionals who have a positive and enthusiastic attitude and connect well with others.

Skills

Skills can be improved through training or experience.

  • 70%

    Mathematics

    Using maths to solve problems.

  • 68%

    Reading comprehension

    Reading work related information.

  • 66%

    Operations analysis

    Understanding needs and product requirements to create a design.

  • 64%

    Critical thinking

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

  • 64%

    Active learning

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

  • 61%

    Systems analysis

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

  • 59%

    Complex problem solving

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

  • 59%

    Judgment and decision making

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

  • 59%

    Monitoring

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

  • 59%

    Systems evaluation

    Measuring how well a system is working and how to improve it.

  • 57%

    Active listening

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

  • 57%

    Speaking

    Talking to others.

  • 57%

    Time management

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

  • 57%

    Coordination with others

    Being adaptable and coordinating work with other people.

  • 57%

    Science

    Using scientific rules and methods to solve problems.

  • 54%

    Learning strategies

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

  • 54%

    Social perceptiveness

    Understanding why people react the way they do.

  • 48%

    Persuasion

    Talking people into changing their minds or their behaviour.

  • 46%

    Instructing

    Teaching people how to do something.

  • 45%

    Management of material resources

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


Knowledge

These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.

  • 90%

    Engineering and technology

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

  • 84%

    Building and construction

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

  • 81%

    Technical design

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

  • 75%

    Mathematics

    Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.

  • 72%

    Administration and management

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

  • 71%

    English language

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

  • 66%

    Physics

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

  • 65%

    Customer and personal service

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

  • 60%

    Computers and electronics

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

  • 60%

    Law and government

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

  • 60%

    Education and training

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

  • 56%

    Public safety and security

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

  • 55%

    Economics and accounting

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

  • 53%

    Personnel and human resources

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

  • 51%

    Sales and marketing

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

  • 50%

    Mechanical

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

  • 50%

    Chemistry

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

  • 47%

    Clerical

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

  • 45%

    Transportation

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

  • 41%

    Psychology

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


Abilities

Workers use these physical and mental abilities..

  • 71%

    Oral comprehension

    Listen to and understand what people say.

  • 71%

    Oral expression

    Communicate by speaking.

  • 71%

    Written comprehension

    Read and understand written information.

  • 70%

    Mathematics

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

  • 70%

    Problem spotting

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

  • 68%

    Deductive reasoning

    Use general rules to find answers or solve problems logically.

  • 63%

    Working with numbers

    Add, subtract, multiply, or divide.

  • 61%

    Categorising

    Come up with different ways of grouping things.

  • 59%

    Inductive reasoning

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

  • 59%

    Visualization

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

  • 57%

    Near vision

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

  • 57%

    Sorting or ordering

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

  • 57%

    Written expression

    Write in a way that people can understand.

  • 57%

    Brainstorming

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

  • 57%

    Originality

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

  • 55%

    Flexibility of closure

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

  • 54%

    Far vision

    See details that are far away.

  • 54%

    Speech recognition

    Identify and understand the speech of another person.

  • 52%

    Perceptual speed

    Use your eyes to quickly compare groups of letters, numbers, pictures, or other things.

  • 52%

    Speech clarity

    Speak clearly so others can understand you.


Activities

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

  • 79%

    Making decisions and solving problems

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

  • 77%

    Planning and prioritising work

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

  • 77%

    Thinking creatively

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

  • 75%

    Keeping your knowledge up-to-date

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

  • 75%

    Communicating within a team

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

  • 73%

    Coordinating the work of a team

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

  • 72%

    Building good relationships

    Building good working relationships and keeping them over time.

  • 72%

    Communicating with the public

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

  • 71%

    Giving expert advice

    Providing guidance and expert advice to management or other groups.

  • 71%

    Researching and investigating

    Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.

  • 70%

    Checking compliance with standards

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

  • 70%

    Collecting and organising information

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

  • 68%

    Scheduling work and activities

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

  • 67%

    Checking for errors or defects

    Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials for errors, problems or defects.

  • 66%

    Managing payments and orders

    Monitoring and controlling resources and the spending of money.

  • 65%

    Making sense of information and ideas

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

  • 63%

    Assessing and evaluating things

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

  • 62%

    Working with computers

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

  • 61%

    Looking for changes over time

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

  • 61%

    Leading and encouraging a team

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


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.

  • 86%

    Analytical

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

  • 62%

    Administrative

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

  • 38%

    Creative

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

  • 38%

    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.
  • 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.

  • 79%

    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.

  • 76%

    Achievement

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

  • 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.

  • 67%

    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%

    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.


Demands

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

    Electronic mail

    Use electronic mail.

  • 96%

    Telephone

    Talk on the telephone.

  • 93%

    Face-to-face discussions

    Talk with people face-to-face.

  • 84%

    Being exact or accurate

    Be very exact or highly accurate.

  • 82%

    Contact with people

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

  • 82%

    Impact of decisions

    Make decisions that have a large impact on other people.

  • 81%

    Teamwork

    Work with people in a group or team.

  • 80%

    Freedom to make decisions

    Have freedom to make decision on your own.

  • 80%

    Indoors, heat controlled

    Work indoors with access to heating or cooling.

  • 78%

    Letters and memos

    Write letters and memos.

  • 77%

    Unstructured work

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

  • 76%

    Consequence of error

    Work where mistakes have serious consequences.

  • 74%

    Spend time sitting

    Spend time sitting at work.

  • 73%

    Time pressure

    Work to strict deadlines.

  • 70%

    Competition

    Compete with others, or be aware of competitive pressures.

  • 70%

    Frequent decision making

    Frequently make decisions that impact other people.

  • 69%

    Outdoors, exposed to weather

    Work outdoors, exposed to the weather.

  • 68%

    In an enclosed vehicle or equipment

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

  • 67%

    Responsible for outcomes

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

  • 65%

    Lead or coordinate a team

    Lead others to do work activities.

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, 17-2051.00 - Civil Engineers.


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