The Real Difference Between White-Collar and Blue-Collar Jobs

Organisations hire thousands, sometimes even tens of thousands of employees, and they are all expected to carry out different roles in the business. In relation to that, we tend to hear a lot of terms bandied about, and two of the most common terms are ‘blue-collar’ and ‘white-collar’ jobs.

The idea of blue and white-collar might seem a little outdated, especially with the addition of pink-collar and grey-collar, but it’s a good litmus test for what sort of job you should expect, and how it is categorised in the corporate setting.

We thought it’s relevant for us to learn the difference between white collar and blue collar jobs as this can influence the way we apply for specific roles. We’ve discussed that and more in this blog post.

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White-Collar Jobs

White-collar is the term coined to those who wear a suit on a regular workday as they work in office environments. Of course, this is less of an absolute anymore because of the fact that more and more companies give their employees the privilege to wear anything they want to wear in the office.

Nevertheless, the term still applies to specific types of jobs in Australia, predominantly in an office or administrative setting. Some of the common white-collar jobs include being human resource consultants, data entry specialists, managers, and executives.

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Blue-Collar Jobs

Blue-collar jobs are traditionally those that fall under the umbrella of manual labour jobs with hourly pay. Hands-on tasks related to construction, plumbing, and manufacturing would be great examples of blue-collar jobs.

Unlike other countries, blue-collar jobs in Australia tend to be paid very well.

Light Blue-Collar Jobs

There is a new type of role cropping up across Australia in recent times, also known as the light blue-collar job. This term generally relates to university or college-educated individuals who’ve found themselves in lower-paid labour office jobs, with wages comparable to what blue-collar workers earn.

Salary Information

PayScale Australia reveals that, interestingly, some blue-collar salaries are not too far from white-collar ones. For instance, a Construction Laborer earns about A$49,000 annually while an starting bookkeeper could expect to bring in around A$55,699 per year.

On the other hand, some white-collar jobs, just like software developers, earn almost double the amount of what blue-collar workers earn, or even triple just like what general practitioners earn. A software developer receives up to AU$94,864 per year, as per PayScale Australia, and a general practitioner earns up to AU$297,281 annually.

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If you’re undecided on what career path to pursue, finding out the difference between white collar and blue collar jobs and the salaries they offer can hopefully help you make a decision in the future.

Meanwhile, if you’re interested in pursuing a specific white-collar job, whether it’s related to human resource, administration, management, or marketing, we have several online courses that can help you get certified.

Just click the orange button below to view our course listing. Likewise, if you have questions about any of our offerings, you can reach out to us by filling out our enquiry form which you can also find by clicking the orange button below.

Thanks and Have a successful career ahead!

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