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Overview

This page provides information and data on the Digital Media sector, which is one component of the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) industry. Digital Media includes the design and production of multimedia and games for platforms including PC, console, online and mobile.

The amount Australian consumers spend on games is predicted to be $3.2 billion in 2020, with considerable growth coming from mobile games in particular, with an average annual growth of 9% per year from 2016 to 2020 predicted.

Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) technologies play a part in the evolving sector.

Vocational education and training (VET) is required in the Digital Media sector for occupations such as:

  • Graphic and Web Designers, and Illustrators
  • Multimedia Specialists and Web Developers.

Nationally recognised training for Digital Media is delivered under the ICT Information and Communications Technology Training Package.

For information on other ICT sub-sectors, see ICT Operations and Support, ICT NetworksProgramming Software and Web Development and Telecommunications Technology.

All data sources are available at the end of the page.

Employment trends

Employment snapshot

For occupations related to the Digital Media sector, employment levels have fluctuated since 2001 for both Multimedia Specialists and Web Developers, and Graphic and Web Designers and Illustrators. While employment levels for Graphic and Web Designers and Illustrators decreased from 60,400 in 2020 to 54,900 in 2021, they are projected to increase to 63,300 by 2025. Employment levels for Multimedia Specialists and Web Developers peaked in 2021 at 19,600 but are projected to decrease by around 44% to 11,000 by 2025.

Training trends

Training snapshot

Program enrolments fell sharply from 10,270 in 2016 to 4,410 in 2017 and though they continued this downward trend, falling to 1,820 in 2019, enrolments remained stable between 2019 and 2020 . Program completions in this sector have continued to decrease over this time, from 730 in 2016 to approximately 560 in 2018. After a slight increase in 2019, completions decreased to just under 470 in 2020.

All program enrolments are at certificate IV and above level, with near equal proportions between certificate IV (46%) and diploma or higher (54%). There was slightly more program enrolments in 2020 in Digital and Interactive Games qualifications (970) than in Information and Digital Media Technologies qualifications (860).

Enrolments for the Digital and Interactive Games qualification cluster were intended for the occupation of Multimedia Specialist. Enrolments in Information and Digital Media Technologies had an intended occupation of Multimedia Designer.

The predominant training provider for this sector was TAFE institutes (51%) and to a smaller extent private training providers (29%). Overall, Digital-media related subjects were government funded (approximately 76%) in 2020, although funding sources do vary by provider type. The highest proportion of students in 2020 were from New South Wales (31%), followed by Victoria (25%) and students living overseas (18%).

Approximately 39% of training was delivered in New South Wales, followed by Victoria (29%) and Queensland (17%).

There were an insufficient quantity of apprentice and trainee commencements in 2020 to allow analysis.

For more data specific to your occupation, industry group or training package, visit NCVER’s Data Builder.

For more data specific to your region visit NCVER’s Atlas of Total VET.

If you are interested in extracting NCVER data to construct tables with data relevant to you, sign up for a VOCSTATS account.

Industry insights

According to the Information and Communications Technology IRC’s 2019 Skills Forecast, digital technologies continue to grow in Australia, with emerging and evolving technologies being key drivers of change. Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) are amongst these technologies.

Digital Economy Strategy 2030 reports that one of the Government’s Key 2021-22 Budget Initiatives is tax incentives to grow the digital games sector and encourage business investment in digital technologies. With this support, the Australian games industry could generate up to $1 billion per year and employ 10,000 full-time workers within the decade. Gaming sector talent has transferable digital capabilities that Australia could apply to range of sectors, including defence, health, education and construction.

The report also predicts that by 2030 augmented reality will be used in electrical trades and businesses for learning and training. Augmented reality devices may be used to show wiring layouts and potential hazards. Case studies also show large construction projects are using augmented reality software to walk through building sites.

The Hi-Tech sector plan 2030 found more than 60 representatives from business, research and regional South Australia identified that computer vision, augmented and virtual reality is one of a number of technologies and capabilities that would have the greatest potential to contribute to the state’s economic growth over the next decade.

For further industry insights on skills needs and job vacancy data, see the Information and Communications Technology industry cluster page.

Links and resources

Data sources and notes

Department of Employment 2021, Employment Projections, available from the Labour Market Information Portal

  • by ANZSCO, selected occupations, employment projections to May 2025
    • 2612 Multimedia Specialists and Web Developers
    • 2324 Graphic and Web Designers, and Illustrators.

 

Australian Bureau of Statistics 2021, 6291.0.55.001 - EQ08 - Employed persons by Occupation unit group of main job (ANZSCO), Sex, State and Territory, August 1986 onwards, viewed 1 August 2021 https://www.abs.gov.au/statistics/labour/employment-and-unemployment/labour-force-australia-detailed/may-2021.  

  • Employed total by ANZSCO, 2001 to 2021, May Quarter
    • 2612 Multimedia Specialists and Web Developers
    • 2324 Graphic and Web Designers, and Illustrators.

                                                                                                                                               

Training data has been extracted from the National VET Provider Collection, Total VET students and courses from the following training package or qualifications:

  • ICT Information and Communications Technology Training PackageDigital and interactive Games
    • ICA40911 - Certificate IV in Digital and Interactive Games
    • ICA50211 - Diploma of Digital and Interactive Games
    • ICT40915 - Certificate IV in Digital and Interactive Games
    • ICT50215 - Diploma of Digital and Interactive Games.
  • Information and Digital Media Technologies
    • ICA40805 - Certificate IV in Information Technology (Multimedia)
    • ICA40811 - Certificate IV in Digital Media Technologies
    • ICA50905 - Diploma of Information Technology (Multimedia)
    • ICA50911 - Diploma of Digital Media Technologies
    • ICT40815 - Certificate IV in Digital Media Technologies
    • ICT50915 - Diploma of Digital Media Technologies.

This includes superseded qualifications and training packages.

Data covers a range of selected student and training characteristics in the following categories and years:

  • 2016 to 2020 program enrolments
  • 2016 to 2020 program completions.

 

Total VET students and courses data is reported for the calendar year. Program enrolments are the qualifications, courses and skill sets in which students are enrolled in a given period. For students enrolled in multiple programs, all programs are counted. Program completion indicates that a student has completed a structured and integrated program of education or training. Location data uses student residence. Subject enrolment is registration of a student at a training delivery location for the purpose of undertaking a module, unit of competency or subject. For more information on the terms and definitions, please refer to the Total VET students and courses: terms and definitions document. 

Low counts (less than 5) are not reported to protect client confidentiality.

Percentages are rounded to one decimal place. This can lead to situations where the total sum of proportions in a chart may not add up to exactly 100%.

Updated: 26 Oct 2021
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