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Post-Pandemic Careers to Watch: 6 Industries On the Up

17 November 2021   |   by Explore Careers

With reports of high unemployment, more people than ever signing up to claim Centrelink and dozens of horror stories about redundancies, reduced hours and job losses – when it comes to the thought of a post-pandemic career, the struggle is real!

We’re not going to tell you things haven’t been hard or that there won’t be significant changes still to come that will shape the ways we approach, search for and secure work, but it’s not all doom and gloom.

Change can be good or bad, and while some industries have taken a hit, others are thriving.

How Has the Pandemic Changed the Ways We Work?

For decades, the idea of the 9-5 office desk job has been the staple of the workforce, but the pandemic has switched that up!

As more companies were forced to turn to remote working, flexibility has also crept in. In the past year, many organisations have closed their office spaces and seek to maintain remote working for their teams in the years to come.

Other companies are exploring more flexible options, too, asking teams to return to office spaces for meetings one or two days a week, and working remotely the rest of the time.

The onset of COVID-19 has also asked many businesses to put employee wellbeing at the forefront of policies. The stress and trauma of living and working through one of the most significant medical pandemics most of us will ever see has meant more employers reassessing how they view sick leave and the demands placed on staff across various industries. There’s been a huge shift from office culture to supportive culture.

But it’s not just remote working. The pandemic has also asked big industries like hospitality to rethink how they run their businesses to stay afloat in these tumultuous times. There are lots of innovative, good things happening!

6 Industries on the Up

So, with good things happening, borders opening, and more businesses seeking to move forward with a hopeful end of the pandemic insight – what industries should you be focusing on for your future career?

Here are five to take a look at:

1. Food Manufacturing, Retail, & Delivery

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, Australia experienced its biggest retail sales in March 2020. Although panic buying certainly had something to do with, food manufacturers, retailers and delivery services continued to recruit and expand throughout the pandemic. A sharp increase demand meant employment opened up across the entire retail infrastructure chain, from warehousing and logistics to delivery services and food production. This isn’t expected to slow down as more people continue to use online retail services in the years to come.

2. Health and Social Care

It’s probably no surprise that this industry saw a steady increase in jobs throughout the past couple of years. In response to COVID-19, many Australian hospitals are currently advertising expressions of interest to recruit applicants who can provide essential support at short notice. A global pandemic coupled with an ageing Australian population means it’s an industry with significant projected growth in the coming years.

3. Medical Research

In response to the global need for a vaccine, medical research teams worked around the clock to develop and deliver one in record, history-making time. While there were questions about the safety of the vaccines due to how quickly they came about, the truth is, it was the global support, prioritisation of research teams, and financial resourcing poured into supporting them that led to their increased development. Research (and career opportunities) in this area will be ongoing and not just for COVID-19, as medical research aims to understand what other vaccines can be developed or may be needed in the future.

4. Information Technology Services

According to Seek, developers, programmers, software engineers, systems analysts and project managers are in high demand! As more businesses have moved to remote working, they seek to ensure they have the technological infrastructure to support staff. We’re also seeing more services delivered digitally – things like GP and telehealth appointments, as restaurant ordering systems (outside of the big ones like Uber Eats). All these needs behind the scenes require IT gurus to make it work, making this an industry that will only be on the up.

5. Customer Service Teams & Management

This goes hand in hand with the increase in retail needs as the nation switched to online delivery, but the demand for customer service teams and management has sky-rocketed across multiple industries. Think banking, postal and delivery services, health services, veterinary services, personal services – everyone has moved online. The increase in demand through online services has also led to a rise in the need for customer service teams to manage customers and clients and stay on top of their needs. Many online businesses offer chat services, and some of these are available 24/7. It’s definitely a growing area. 

6. Hospitality & Tourism

It might not be top of your list, but as we start to return to some form of normal and travel becomes a priority for many people, tourism and hospitality are already on the up! From airline staff to hotel management, restaurants, and tourism trades, there will be a steep demand in the year or two to come as people enjoy travelling once more.

The Post-COVID Boom?

These industries aren’t exhaustive, and we’ve chosen them because they’re based on the industries that have adapted and grown throughout the pandemic. There are definitely many others we haven’t touched on!

While the end of the pandemic looks insight, there are still a lot of uncertainties. Vaccine rates, further lockdowns, potential new viral strains, and economic policy will also have a huge impact on what industries continue to grow and what jobs become available.

We still firmly believe that whatever your dream career, there will be an opportunity for you to pursue it, but you may have to adapt your ideas around what that realistically looks like.


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