Working in Sydney



Sydney serves as Australia’s largest financial centre which produces almost ten percent of the nation’s Gross Domestic Product. Nearly half of its total workforce is foreign-born which means that there are good opportunities for expats in one of the most culturally diverse work environment in New South Wales.

Immigrants in Sydney account for about 75% of the city’s growth in population. The secret behind this city’s large population is not just its natural beauty but also because of its reputation for providing high paying jobs not just to locals but expats as well. Sydney is a consistent part of the honour roll in the ranking of top global cities and most liveable regions in the world. With a population of 5.25 million people, most of the credit for this goes to the city's robust economy. Sydney’s central business district happens to be the biggest in Australia and even extends further into Sydney's inner regions.

Working expats who wish to move to Sydney must keep in mind some of the important factors below to ensure that they’ll have a smooth sailing career abroad.

Sydney’s Dynamic Industries

The most number of employment opportunities come from the professional, scientific and technical services, along with financial and insurance services. The accommodation and food service sectors also provide many people with employment opportunities. Another significant facet of Sydney's economy is its role as one of Australia's main financial centres. Significant banks that are commonly used in Sydney include:

The Australian Securities Exchange and the Reserve Bank of Australia are both headquartered in the city, along with 90 other banks.

Another telling sign of a dynamic city is its thriving retail industry. The city's shopping malls include the Queen Victoria Building in the city's central business district and the streets of Newtown and Enmore, Woollahra, and Crown. These scenic avenues are lined with shops teeming with what the city's retail and fashion sector have to offer. With the city's famous structures like the Opera House and beaches as beautiful as the Bondi Beach, tourism is bound to be one of the city's primary sources of employment as well. 

"Getting an Australian visa can be a very difficult process for some, but for us, we were very lucky to have a work sponsored visa. The company that recruited my husband took care of our visa application and helped move us out to Australia."- Lauren Kicknosway, Expat in Sydney, Australia

Sydney also accounts for about 12% of North South Wales' agriculture production. A considerably significant 58% of flower produced in the region is also from Sydney. With the city's diverse economic offerings, the city is abundant with employment opportunities - good news for both Australians and expatriates alike. 

Trending Jobs

Australia has earned a reputation as a melting pot to engineers, contractors, dentist, miners, finance and dealers for years. However, work in these areas commands higher requirements in occupational health and safety. Maximising production via hourly pay speaks well if you are an anaesthesiologist in Australia. There is a switch in job trends from full-time to part-time workers as new jobs in Sydney require higher occupational risks and safety. About 40% of workers are now on short-term contracts and the rise of other contracts like working 35 hours a week. Companies are inclined to hire more and more part-time workers instead of employing full-time workers.

"I don’t really have anything positive to say about the Aussie visa process because there is a lot of money involved..." - Tara Foster, Expat in Sydney

Among the top emerging job in Sydney are the cyber security risks manager, digital marketing, human resources in charge, as well as those who focus on financial sector and life sciences and health care industry.

Top Paying Jobs by the Hour

Sydney’s employment rate is 72%, and an average salary of AU$ 7,375 is earned. To mention Sydney’s top jobs per hour pay scale are anaesthesiologists earning $124.10, followed by internal medicine specialists with the rate of $88. Dermatologists, obstetricians, radiologists, oncologists, pathologists and the like earn a little lower than internal medicine specialists by less than $20 with $69.30 per hour. Dental practitioners and mining engineers earn $68.60 and $65.60 respectively.

Work Schedule

Work schedule in Sydney vary with every employer and sector, but generally, employees should have a total of 38 working hours per week or 7.6 hours per day. Office workers usually start their day at 8:30 am and end it at around 5:30 pm while blue-collar workers’ daily schedule is from 7 or 8 in the morning until 4:30 in the afternoon. Employees are also eligible for at least half an hour meal break after working for five continuous hours. Any excess time rendered for work beyond the 38hours/ week is considered as overtime and is usually paid 1.5 times the regular daily rate for the first three hours.

Sydney’s Business Culture

It might be mostly influenced by the relaxing views offered by Sydney despite living in a cosmopolitan city, as your Australian colleagues may be a little more laid-back and relaxed than their Western counterparts. Because of this less formal attitude, you might find your Australian co-workers being more comfortable being addressed by their first name more than by their last name. They are also more receptive and open-minded to new ideas, and may even appreciate a lively debate. Do not be too comfortable, however, when it comes to punctuality. Make sure to come on time and give notice should you be late for a meeting or appointment. 

Work Holidays

Below is the list of all national holidays that are observed in Sydney:

January 1

New Year’s Day

January 26

Australia Day

March 25

Good Friday

March 26

Easter Saturday

March 27

Easter Sunday

March 28

Easter Monday

April 25

Anzac Day

June 13

Queen’s Birthday

August 1

Bank Holiday (not state-wide)

October 3

Labour Day

December 25

Christmas Day

December 26

Boxing Day


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Continue reading:

Working in Australia

Expat Services in Sydney