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6 highest paying jobs in Australia without a degree

by Maria Onzain
Posted: July 09, 2020

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** This post was updated in July 2020**

Did you know that it is possible to get a very well-paid job without spending four-plus years in college? Yes, that's right! If you don't want to end up with student debt, there are other ways to land a job, and you could even earn more than the $1,633.80 Australian average weekly earnings (source: Australian Bureau of Statistics).

While you may need a level of training, you can still access some of the highest paying jobs in Australia without a degree. Here are some great ideas to inspire you:

1. Construction Manager

Average salary: $155,463*

To become a Construction Manager, you can get a bachelor's degree. Alternatively, you can take a flexible building and construction course online. You will need to learn how to plan and direct building projects and prepare yourself to prepare building sketches and calculate costs.

This occupation is one of the best paid in Australia, and the job involves supervising and managing contractors and labourers at construction sites. If you want to work as a Construction Manager in Australia, you will need to register with the Australian Business Licence and Information Service (ABLIS) and remember to renew your registration annually.

2. HR Manager

Average salary: $90,902*

If you enjoy people management, a career in HR may be ideal for you. As an HR Manager, you will be responsible for creating and coordinating strategies that ensure the suitability of the organisation's staff.

HR is an excellent area of business to enter, especially as there’s an increasing demand for HR professionals in Australia. You also don’t need a degree and can gain experience as you go. To move faster into more senior HR roles, you can enrol on the SB50618 Diploma of Human Resources Management course where you will acquire all the advanced skills you need.

3. Ethical Hacker

Average salary: $132,456*

It’s not surprising that Ethical Hacker is on the list of the highest paying jobs in Australia without a degree, given the importance of Cybersecurity. Also known as "white hat hackers", the job involves hacking software developed by a company to ensure there are no security flaws. 

To become an Ethical Hacker, you must pass the Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH) exam and have a minimum of two years of information security-related work experience. A great starting point, if you want to develop your skills, is Open Colleges’ partnership Certified Cybersecurity Professional course.  

4. Fitness Manager

Average salary: $86,372*

As a Fitness Manager, you would be responsible for coordinating the operations of the health club where you work to ensure the centre operates correctly. This can include everything from hiring trainers to scheduling fitness programmes and ensuring the safety of the club.

If you think a career in fitness is the right choice for you, consider working as a Fitness Instructor or Personal Trainer. You may also want to compliment your work experience with a fitness-related course, to help climb the ladder and become a Fitness Manager.

5. Real Estate Agent

Average salary: $97,862*

Selling and renting property can be a difficult job. But done correctly, it can be very rewarding and lead to a very satisfying annual income. To get there, you will need to enjoy networking with people, be an excellent salesperson and a hard worker.

If you want to become a Real Estate Agent, you may start as an agent's representative and learn from the best to work your way up.

6. Sales Manager

Average salary: $88,828*

As a Sales Manager, you will lead and guide a team of salespeople and are responsible for ensuring the company achieves its sales targets.

On top of a salary, you can usually earn commissions, based on performance, which makes this role especially stimulating if you are looking for easy jobs that pay well. A degree in marketing or business might help, but work experience and a natural ability for sales will help you succeed as a Sales Manager.

As you can see, there’s a diverse range of possibilities out there when it comes to high paying unskilled jobs in Australia. Find the area that best fits you and start building your successful career now.

*Average salaries source: Business Insider


Maria Onzain

Maria is a Journalist and Content Marketing Specialist writing for Open Colleges about education, career, wellbeing, and innovation. With a degree in journalism and a master in international marketing, she covers stories on online publications about ed-tech, business, and women.

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