Coles is currently the most-searched-for job in Australia.
Woolworths may be Australia's largest supermarket by revenue but, according to a recent study of Google search data, Coles is the most-sought-after employer in the country, with 24,000 monthly searches of the company name with the keyword “careers”.
Woolies did come in second place, with 21,000 monthly searches. Retail and finance led the charge in most popular industries, with big names like Qantas, the Australian Taxation Office, Bunnings, Westpac, Commonwealth Bank Australia and JB-HI-FI also making the list.
Coles has more than 1,800 retail outlets - including 840 supermarkets - across the country and employs more than 120,000 people. Its footprint extends into pretty much every town, city and region of Australia. And, like Woolworths, Coles offers employment opportunities for all age groups, from school kids looking for their first job, to older Australians re-entering the workforce as the cost of living continues to rise.
Australia’s most-searched-for careers: monthly figures
Coles - 24,000
Woolworths - 21,000
Qantas - 8,200
Australian Taxation Office - 7,900
Bunnings - 6,800
Westpac - 4,900
Commonwealth Bank Australia - 4,600
JB-HI-FI - 4,000
NSW Health - 4,000
SA Health - 3,900
Retail and finance dominated the monthly careers searches in Australia but here are the big hitters across the main industries, according to Switch on Business.
Tech: Atlassian (2,800), Canva (2,400), Microsoft (1,300), Telstra (1,300), Apple (1,200)
Banking/Finance: Westpac (4,900), CBA (4,600), NAB (3,000), Suncorp (2,700), Bendigo (900)
Food and drinks: McDonalds (2,500), Hungry Jacks (2,400), Subway (1,700), Dominos (700), Starbucks (700)
Transport: Qantas (8,200), V/line (1,900), Emirates (800), Transport for NSW (600) , Queensland Rail (500)
Retail: Coles (24,000), Woolworths (21,000), Bunnings (6,800), JB HI-FI (4,000), Target (3,700)
How do I get a job at Coles or Woolworths?
Coles told Yahoo Finance it was hiring people year-round, but at the moment there was a push to get more people into roles in regional remote areas, specifically for qualified bakers, delivery drivers and retail leadership roles.
"We are always looking for people with different backgrounds, experiences and perspectives to build a workplace that reflects the diverse communities we serve," a spokesperson said.
"To land a job at Coles, we recommend submitting an Expression of Interest to go into our candidate pool so that you can be contacted when a job becomes available that might be a good fit.
Woolworths has about 128,000 people employed in its supermarkets arm alone and told Yahoo Finance it was “always recruiting”, given its size.
“We're really proud that around one in eight Australians start their careers with Woolworths. Given the size of our store network and the many opportunities we provide for career progression, we know that we're an employer of choice,” a Woolworths spokesperson said.
"We have an always on recruitment drive and while we know our supermarkets are popular, there's also great roles across the broader Group including BIG W and customer fulfilment centres."
On LinkedIn, Woolworths Supermarkets has 321 jobs available, which doesn’t include brands under the wider Woolworths umbrella, including Dan Murphy’s and Big W.
The group has 715 jobs available, from head of internal communications to assistant online manager and online personal shopper.
The Coles group has 267 jobs listed on LinkedIn, from store duty manager to group product manager or head of commercial strategy.
The research from Switch on Business was worldwide and found the US and the UK were also topped by supermarket giants - Walmart and Tesco, respectively.
The new study comes at a time when almost half of white collar professions are suffering in a skills shortage.
Jobs and Skills Australia found earlier this month the number of jobs with workers in short supply rose to 332 in 2023 from 286 in 2022.
Employers are struggling to fill openings at a time there are near-record-low levels of unemployment.
The unemployment rate fell to 3.6 per cent in September from 3.7 per cent the previous month, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics.
Kate Lamb, head of labour statistics at the ABS, said the number of unemployed people in Australia fell by around 20,000.
"It is important to remember that a fall in unemployment does not always mean much higher employment,” Lamb said.
"The fall in the unemployment rate in September mainly reflected a higher proportion of people moving from being unemployed to not in the labour force."