Importers and Exporters
Importers or Exporters manage the operations of importing or exporting establishments.
Identifies local and overseas business opportunities.
Develops and implements business plans, as well as the policies and procedures for marketing, operating, human resource, pricing and credit.
Determines the mix of products and services to be provided and negotiates conditions of trade.
Liaises with local and overseas suppliers and distributors about orders and products.
Researches regulatory and statutory requirements affecting the importing, exporting, wholesaling and distribution of goods.
Monitors business performance and prepares the estimates, financial statements and reports of operations.
Vocational Education and Training (VET)
Informal or on-the-job
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, Importers, Exporters and Wholesalers, under the outlook section.
Earnings and hours
Around 73% of people employed as Importers and Exporters work full-time hours, in all their jobs combined. This is 7 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.
Employment across Australia
Employment by State and Territory (% Share)
|State||Importers and Exporters||All Jobs Average|
Around 80% of Importers and Exporters live in capital cities, compared with the all jobs average of 62%.
Victoria and New South Wales have a large share of employment relative to their population size.
The regions with the largest share of workers are:
- Melbourne - Inner East
- Sydney - Inner South West
- Sydney - North Sydney and Hornsby
- Melbourne - Inner South
- Melbourne - Inner.
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 Importers and Exporters is 46 years. This is higher than the all jobs average of 40 years.
A large share of workers are aged 45 to 54 years.
Females make up 34% of the workforce. This is 14 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||Importers and Exporters||All Jobs Average|
|65 and Over||9.9||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
Extensive experience or a formal qualification in commerce is needed to work as an Importer or Exporter. Vocational Education and Training (VET) and university are both common study pathways.
- 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 Retail Services and Transport and Logistics Training Package VET training pathways.
Highest Level of Education (% Share)
|Type of Qualification||Importers and Exporters||All Jobs Average|
|Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate||13.6||10.1|
|Year 10 and below||9.1||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 Importers, Exporters and Wholesalers who are motivated, organised and can communicate clearly with a variety of different people.
Skills can be improved through training or experience.
Reading work related information.
Listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions.
Thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem.
Keeping track of how well work is progressing so you can make changes or improvements.
Writing things for co-workers or customers.
Talking to others.
48%Coordination with others
Being adaptable and coordinating work with other people.
Bringing people together and trying to sort out their differences.
46%Complex problem solving
Noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it.
Being able to use what you have learnt to solve problems now and again in the future.
Looking for ways to help people.
Managing your own and other peoples' time to get work done.
43%Judgment and decision making
Figuring out the pros and cons of different options and choosing the best one.
43%Management of personnel resources
Motivating, developing, and directing people as they work, and choosing the best people for the job.
Talking people into changing their minds or their behaviour.
Understanding why people react the way they do.
Using maths to solve problems.
Figuring out how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect it.
Figuring out the best way to teach or learn something new.
Teaching people how to do something.
These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.
71%Customer and personal service
Understanding customer needs, providing good quality service, and measuring customer satisfaction.
Word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office work.
58%Administration and management
Business principles involved in strategic planning, leadership, and coordinating people and resources.
56%Law and government
How our laws and courts work. Government rules and regulations, and the political system.
English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
55%Sales and marketing
Showing, promoting, and selling including marketing strategy, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
Moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road.
Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.
Describing land, sea, and air, including their physical characteristics, locations, how they work together, and the location of plant, animal, and human life.
49%Education and training
Curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
47%Economics and accounting
Economics and accounting, the financial markets, banking and checking and reporting of financial data.
44%Computers and electronics
Circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
41%Personnel and human resources
Recruiting and training people, managing pay and other entitlements (like sick leave), and negotiating pay and conditions.
34%Production and processing
Raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and ways of making and distributing goods.
27%Communications and media
Media production, communication, and dissemination. Includes written, spoken, and visual media.
26%Public safety and security
Use of equipment, rules and ideas to protect people, data, property, and institutions.
Foreign (non-English) language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition and grammar, and pronunciation.
Transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.
Human behaviour; differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; research methods; assessing and treating disorders.
Chemical composition, structure, and properties. How chemicals are made, used, mixed, and can change.
Workers use these physical and mental abilities..
Read and understand written information.
Listen to and understand what people say.
Communicate by speaking.
Come up with different ways of grouping things.
Identify and understand the speech of another person.
Write in a way that people can understand.
See details that are up-close (within a few feet).
Use general rules to find answers or solve problems logically.
Use lots of detailed information to come up with answers or make general rules.
Notice when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong, even if you can't solve the problem.
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.
45%Flexibility of closure
See a pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) hidden in other distracting material.
Choose the right maths method or formula to solve a problem.
Remember things like words, numbers, pictures, and procedures.
Come up with unusual or clever ideas, or creative ways to solve a problem.
Come up with a number of ideas about a topic, even if the ideas aren't very good.
Use your eyes to quickly compare groups of letters, numbers, pictures, or other things.
Pay attention to something without being distracted.
Do two or more things at the same time.
These are kinds of activities workers regularly do in this job.
76%Keeping your knowledge up-to-date
Keeping up-to-date with technology and new ideas.
69%Researching and investigating
Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.
68%Collecting and organising information
Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or checking information or data.
66%Building good relationships
Building good working relationships and keeping them over time.
65%Communicating with the public
Giving information to the public, business or government by telephone, in writing, or in person.
63%Checking compliance with standards
Deciding whether events or processes comply with laws, regulations, or standards.
63%Communicating within a team
Giving information to co-workers by telephone, in writing, or in person.
63%Making decisions and solving problems
Using information to work out the best solution and solve problems.
63%Providing office support
Doing day-to-day office work such as filing and processing paperwork.
62%Planning and prioritising work
Deciding on goals and putting together a detailed plan to get the work done.
61%Documenting or recording information
Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.
61%Negotiating and resolving conflicts
Handling complaints and disagreements, and negotiating with people.
59%Giving expert advice
Providing guidance and expert advice to management or other groups.
59%Making sense of information and ideas
Looking at, working with, and understanding data or information.
58%Guiding and directing staff
Guiding and directing staff, including setting and monitoring performance standards.
56%Managing payments and orders
Monitoring and controlling resources and the spending of money.
54%Explaining things to people
Helping people to understand and use information.
53%Training and teaching others
Understanding the needs of others, developing training programs, and teaching or instructing.
51%Looking for changes over time
Comparing objects, actions, or events. Looking for differences between them or changes over time.
45%Working with computers
Using computers to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process 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 are the style or type of work we prefer to do. All interest areas are shown below.
Starting up and carrying out projects. Leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes require risk taking and often deal with business.
Following set procedures and routines. Working with numbers and details more than with ideas, usually following rules.
Working with people. Helping or providing service to others.
Practical, hands-on work. Often with plants and animals, or materials like wood, tools, and machinery.
Working with forms, designs and patterns. Often need self-expression and can be done without following rules.
Ideas and thinking. Searching for facts and figuring out problems in your head.
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.
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.
Job security and good working conditions. There is usually a steady flow of interesting work, and the pay and conditions are generally good.
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.
Use electronic mail.
Talk on the telephone.
96%Being exact or accurate
Be very exact or highly accurate.
96%Spend time sitting
Spend time sitting at work.
Work to strict deadlines.
Talk with people face-to-face.
90%Frequent decision making
Frequently make decisions that impact other people.
90%Repeating same tasks
Repeat the same tasks or activities (e.g., key entry) over and over, without stopping.
87%Letters and memos
Write letters and memos.
86%Contact with people
Have contact with people by telephone, face-to-face, or any other way.
81%Contact with the public
Work with customers or the public.
80%Impact of decisions
Make decisions that have a large impact on other people.
80%Indoors, heat controlled
Work indoors with access to heating or cooling.
78%Freedom to make decisions
Have freedom to make decision on your own.
Compete with others, or be aware of competitive pressures.
Have freedom to decide on tasks, priorities, and goals.
74%Automation of tasks
Do tasks that are mostly automated.
Work with people in a group or team.
71%Consequence of error
Work where mistakes have serious consequences.
65%Lead or coordinate a team
Lead others to do work activities.
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, 13-1199.03 - Customs Brokers.