Profile of Women's Employment in NSW: Trends and Issues. NSW Office For Women

In 2010, the Office for Women’s Policy commissioned the Workplace Research Centre and Women and Work Research Group, at the University of Sydney, to research and profile trends and issues in NSW women’s employment.

The report provides up to date, accessible information about:

  • women's status and experience in the NSW labour market
  • the jobs women do and when and where they work
  • what women earn now and what they have saved for retirement
  • how caring affects women's participation in work
  • how women are represented at work through trade unions
  • the experiences of different groups of women.

While overall, NSW women's experiences in work, care and their savings for retirement are similar to those of women in other States and Territories, and nationally, NSW is unique in how women participate in the labour force.

Although the rates of participation by men and women in NSW are comparably lower than other States and Territories, the profile of women’s participation in NSW closely reflects the profile of men.

Traditionally (and in other jurisdictions except the ACT) women usually exit the labour force during their childbearing years, but in NSW, women participate in sustained and increasing proportions at this time.

In contrast to married women in other states, married women in NSW also display increasing workforce participation rates until reaching 45-54 years at which stage their participation decreases. This also mirrors the male life course work pattern rather than the conventional patterns for females.