Public sector workforce at a glance

In this section

140 403 employees in the public sector (110 662) full-time equivalent (FTE) across 96 agencies, 1.7% identify as people with disability, 26.3% are aged 55 and over, 12.9% identify as being from a culturally and linguistically diverse background, 45 years is the median age of employees, 23.9% are aged 34 and under, 2.7% identify as Aboriginal Australian.

Across other sectors

While many people think local governments, public universities and other authorities like state-owned utilities are part of the public sector, the Public Sector Management Act 1994 excludes them from the public sector. 

The Commissioner’s jurisdiction extends across the sectors in relation to integrity and conduct.

24 421 employees across 136 local governments

22 829 employees across 4 public universities

15 850 employees across 19 other public authorities

Public sector employees across Western Australia

75.9% work in the Perth Metropolitan Area
24.0% work in regional Western Australia
less than 0.1% work outside of 
Western Australia
Gascoyne
562 FTE 
-5.8% change since 2012
Headcount: 679
Median age: 46
Median salary5: $72 808
65% permanent
Peel
2557 FTE 
20.6% change since 2012
Headcount: 3192
Median age: 47
Median salary: $75 358
75% permanent
Goldfields–Esperance 
2518 FTE 
1.1% change since 2012
Headcount: 3134
Median age: 45
Median salary: $73 717
68% permanent
Perth
84 022 FTE 
2.0% change since 2012
Headcount: 105 967
Median age: 45
Median salary: $85 175
70% permanent
Great Southern 
3057 FTE 
4.5% change since 2012
Headcount: 4081
Median age: 49
Median salary: $76 452
71% permanent
Pilbara
2448 FTE 
4.7% change since 2012
Headcount: 2946
Median age: 41
Median salary: $76 452
65% permanent
Kimberley
3092 FTE 
9.7% change since 2012
Headcount: 3650
Median age: 43
Median salary: $80 797
65% permanent
South West
6366 FTE 
9.8% change since 2012
Headcount: 8680
Median age: 48
Median salary: $76 874
69% permanent
Mid West
2776 FTE 
1.9% change since 2012
Headcount: 3519
Median age: 46
Median salary: $74 760
70% permanent
Wheatbelt
3192 FTE 
-3.3% change since 2012
Headcount: 4469
Median age: 48
Median salary: $67 896
69% permanent

 

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Gender

The Commission is developing a strategy for gender equality in public employment which aims to assist public authorities to embed gender equality at all levels in the workplace. The strategy, which focuses on advocacy of senior leadership, accountability, inclusive and equitable cultures and flexible workplaces, will be released in 2018.

72.3% identify as female, 27.7% identify as male, 0.1% identify as indeterminate/intersex/unspecified$85 027 is the median salary for public sector employees, $80 797 is the median  salary for females, $93 341 is the median  salary for males

Did you know?

  • 47% of females work on a part-time basis compared with 16 per cent of males
  • 64% of FTE paid at $160 000 per year or more, are occupied by males

Across the sector, males have a higher median salary than females, and this is influenced by a number of factors including:

  • females and males working in different industries (industrial segregation) and different jobs (occupational segregation). Historically, female-dominated industries and jobs have attracted lower wages than male-dominated industries and jobs
  • a lack of females in senior positions, and a lack of part-time or flexible senior roles. Females are more likely than males to work part-time or flexibly because they still undertake most unpaid caring work and may find it difficult to access senior roles
  • differences in education, work experience and seniority
  • discrimination, both direct and indirect.

Source: Workplace Gender Equality Agency, 2017.

Snapshot by occupational group

Teachers

21 768 FTE

6% Change since 2013

44 Median age

$103 049 Median salary

78% Female
Medical practitioners
3776 FTE
8% Change since 2013 
37 Median age
$164 871 Median salary
44% Female
Nurses and midwives
11 738 FTE
-2% Change since 2013 
43 Median age 
$85 175 Median salary
90% Female
Prison officers

2426 FTE

-6% Change since 2013

48 Median age

$85 186 Median salary

21% Female
Fire and emergency workers
1253 FTE
4% Change since 2013 
43 Median age
$97 098 Median salary
5% Female
Police officers (Police Force)
6555 FTE
15% Change since 2013 
40 Median age
$92 273 Median salary
24% Female
Education aides
8273 FTE
8% change since 2013 
46 Median age
$49 167 Median salary
95% Female
Clerical and administrative workers

18 628 FTE

-9% change since 2013

47 Median age

$64 256 Median salary

81% Female
Others
42 800 FTE
Unchanged since 2013 
47 Median age
$85 047 Median salary
63% Female
   

 

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Page last updated 19 October 2017