Australia is currently experiencing a catastrophic tradie shortage and it’s not going to change any time soon due to coronavirus restrictions on people entering the country.

Apprentice commencement numbers have dived 33 per cent since the start of the pandemic and 16,000 apprenticeships have been cancelled or suspended since March.

It’s expected more than 100,000 will be lost by the end of the year.

Currently, women make up just 3% of those working in construction, engineering and mining trades but tradie-property-developer-media commentator Tamara Wrigley, who has been renovating houses for 23 year doing all the ‘tradie’ jobs herself, says females are our greatest untapped asset to help lift the industry out of a skills shortage.

“Manual trades are perceived to be masculine professions, so females don’t generally consider careers in these fields, but they should,” she says. “It’s time for women in Australia to roll up their sleeves and join the boys’ club.

“The world is changing, and many women go into lower-paid jobs and careers without even considering a trade – but how many women have painted at least one room of a house, or done their own home improvements? A lot!

“Coronavirus isn’t going away any time soon and tradies are essential workers, meaning the work is constant, plentiful, and lucrative. It’s time to get on the hi-vis and lumberjack shirts and claim a piece of that pie.”

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The average taxable annual income for an Australian tradie is $81,636, but many earn over $100k and It’s not uncommon for starting salaries to be around $140k.

Ten per cent or tradies earn over $200k per year, which is more than the $156k some doctors command.

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