The Fading Australian Dream

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Housing affordability is currently a key issue of discussion in Australia and while there are a number of factors at play, the main price driver is that demand for houses is exceeding supply. Population growth, a trend to smaller households (and so more homes needed relative to the population), and demand for homes not only from first home buyers but also from downsizers, overseas buyers, local investors, and self-managed super funds and trusts are all fuelling price rises.

While Australia’s current annual population growth of 1.4% may seem modest, this adds almost 340,000 to our population each year- which is one new Darwin every 20 weeks or a new Tasmania every 18 months.

Where population growth is strongest, house price rises are the highest

Sydney is growing much faster than this having averaged 1.8% per annum for the last five years. It will add almost two million to its population by 2037 – which is the equivalent of adding a new Perth into Sydney. Melbourne is currently Australia’s fastest growing city and based on the current growth trends, it will overtake Sydney to become the nation’s largest city around the middle of this century. Unsurprisingly where population growth is strongest, house price rises are the highest.

Earnings growth has not kept up with house price growth

In just twenty years, the average Sydney house price has increased more than five-fold from $233,250 in 1997 to $1,190,390 today while in Melbourne prices over the same period have increased by more than six times from $142,000 to $943,100 today. While it is true that wages have increased over this time, earnings growth has not kept up with house price growth. In 20 years, average annual full-time earnings have not quite doubled from $42,010 in 1997 to $82,784 today.

The impact of growing demand on house prices is most evident when comparing prices to average earnings. Twenty years ago, the average Sydney house was 5.6 times average annual earnings while in Melbourne it was an affordable 3.4 times annual earnings. Today Sydney homes are more than 14 times average earnings, and in Melbourne more than 11 times annual earnings. While the maxim that house prices double every 10 years is not always the case and growth fluctuates, since 1997 Sydney prices have in effect doubled every 8 years while Melbourne has managed this every 6 years.

If the growth metrics over the last two decades play out over the next two, the average home in both Sydney and Melbourne in 2037 will exceed $6 million. Clearly, the Australian dream of home ownership for the next generation is fading. Young people today need almost three times the purchasing power that their parents needed to buy the average place, so even double incomes will not quite do it. Additionally, today’s new households are starting their earnings years later than their parents, having spent longer in tertiary studies, and they begin their economic life not with zero savings like their parents, but well into the negative- with interest accumulating study debts to pay off. Even if today’s emerging generations start saving harder and earlier and live with their parents longer, home ownership is still not a given.

Policy settings around migration and baby bonuses have grown the population and policies around property tax incentives, self-managed superannuation and investment provisions have fuelled property demand therefore policy support will be required to bring the great Australian dream a little bit closer to reality.

Supply and demand; Australia as an ageing nation

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

DEMAND: AUSTRALIA AS AN AGEING NATION

A CLEAR AGEING TRAJECTORY

Australia is experiencing a baby boom, with births exceeding 300,000 a year. 30 years ago, the over 65s made up just 11% of our population (one in nine persons). Today the over 65s make up 15% of our population (one in seven). Forecasts project that this cohort will make up 18% in 2027 (one in six). By 2047 one in five Australians (20%) will be aged over 65.

AGEING SOCIETY

Our median age is also increasing. Three decades ago the median age of an Australian was 31.3. Today it is 37.4 and in 2047 it is projected to be just under 40.

85+ POPULATION

The over 85s, where there is an even greater need for aged care services, are growing at a faster rate than the over 65s. In 1987 there were 133,448 Australians aged over 85. Today there are four times as many, and in 2047 there will 14 times as many.

INCREASED LONGEVITY

Not only are there more older people in our nation, but Australians are living longer than ever before. Life expectancy at birth in 1987 was 76.3, whereas today it is 81 for a male and 85 for a female. In 2047, it is projected to 89.9.

HEALTH ADVANCEMENTS ARE INCREASING LONGEVITY

The primary enabler of this increased longevity gain has been the health system rather than individual behaviour. Life expectancy increases will continue because of improved medical technologies, public health infrastructure and better public health measures. New and improved medical interventions will also contribute, as will the improved survivability rates of major illnesses and cancers.

A decade ago, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease were the 6th largest causes of death in Australia. Today they are the 3rd leading causes of death with the number of deaths having more than doubled to 9,864. Over the same period of time, deaths due to the first and second causes of death (heart disease and brain disease) have been decreasing. If today’s current trend continues, by 2021 dementia and Alzheimer’s disease will be the leading cause of death in Australia.

EXPONENTIAL GROWTH OF CENTENARIANS WILL KEEP THE QUEEN BUSY

In 1952, the year that Queen Elizabeth II became sovereign, 40 letters of congratulations would need to have been written to Australians turning 100. This year, 2,925 Australians will turn 100 and in 10 years 5,401 will turn 100. In 30 years the number of congratulatory letters written to Australians turning 100 will increase to 25,938 in the year 2047.

SUPPLY: AUSTRALIA AS AN AGEING NATION

THE CHALLENGE OF SUPPLY

Not only is there an increasing demand on the services provided by the aged care sector with the growing number of over 85s, there is also a workforce supply challenge.

RATIO OF WORKERS TO RETIREES DECLINING

The ageing population will place greater demands for productivity on the labour force. In 1975 for every person of retirement age there were 7.1 people in the working age population. By 2015 there were just 4.5 people of working age for every individual of retirement age, and this is projected to decline to just 2.7 people of working age for every individual at retirement age by 2055.

IMPENDING RETIREMENTS

Because of the high median age of an employee in the aged care sector, half of the aged care workforce will be of retirement age in 15 years. There are 350,000 workers in the aged care sector (estimated in 2012), so this equates to an average of 11,667 retirements per year for the next 15 years. This averages to 972 farewell lunches per month!

If we are to keep the current ratio of aged care workers to people aged over 85 in our nation, we need to add 129,945 workers in the next 10 years. This equates to recruiting 1,083 new workers per month, in addition to replacing the 972 retiring staff per month.

That’s a total recruitment goal of 2,055 each month – adding nearly 25,000 individuals to Australia’s aged care workforce each year.

GET IN TOUCH

To find out more about McCrindle's expertise in the aged care industry, or how we can communicate these insights to your team, please get in touch.

The Healthy Futures Report

Thursday, March 16, 2017

The Pharmacy Guild of Australia and Amneal Pharmaceuticals commissioned McCrindle to write up and design the Healthy Futures 2017 Report. 

This report reveals the insights into consumers understanding of pharmaceuticals and pharmacy health services.

The findings were gathered from a national survey of 1,001 Australians aged 18+ and the results were delivered at the annual 2017 APP conference by Mark McCrindle.

 

From developing the survey through to conducting the analysis and communicating the insights, this piece is a great example of a thought leadership report that delves into Australians attitudes and sentiments towards pharmaceutical services.

VIEW THE FULL REPORT HERE

VIEW THE FULL INFOGRAPHIC HERE 



GET IN TOUCH

If we can assist with any research, event speaking or infographic design please feel free to get in touch:

P: 02 8824 3422

e: info@mccrindle.com.au 

The McCrindle Office Opening

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Last Thursday it was our pleasure to host an office opening of our new space at Unit 105, 29 Solent Circuit Baulkham Hills NSW 2153. Our newly furbished office space in Norwest Business Park, Sydney has been custom designed by our team to facilitate constant innovation, world-class research and creative storytelling. The open plan layout includes shared kitchen facilities, break out meeting rooms and a sizable board meeting room and viewing room, designed to host focus groups.

To commemorate the occasion we hosted a small morning tea for our team, interns, past colleagues and connections who have supported McCrindle along our journey.

Mark McCrindle opened the morning by saying a few words about our history. This was followed by some words by the Hon Alex Hawke MP, the Federal Member for Mitchell, before the unveiling of our life-size infographic wall. We were also honored to have Anthony Moss, the president of the Sydney Hills Business Chamber in attendance. 

We would like to thank all those who have supported McCrindle over the last 10 years and we look forward to welcoming all new and existing clients to our new office space.

Top 3 Tips for Research Visualisation

Monday, March 06, 2017

Yesterday we had a new infographic wall installed in our office which serves not only as our reception sign, but more importantly communicates our vision of making data and statistics visual- and understandable.

Research is at its best when it tells a story, when it paints a picture, when it’s research you can see.

We live in a visual world and so we gather information from what we observe. It is the research that we see that we respond to best. So in a world of big data- we need visual data!

Images not words get cut-through

Symbols not languages are universal

Pictures not statistics connect across the generations

There is an old management maxim which stats “what gets measured gets done.” But to that we would add: what gets measured and communicated gets done.

What gets visualised gets understood. What gets shared gets acted upon.

We believe that if it is important enough to collect and analyse the data- then it is important that we visualise and tell the story of the data.

So here are our top 3 words when it comes to visualising data:

SIMPLICITY

Don’t overcomplicate it. Like a good pasta sauce: start with the best ingredients and reduce, reduce, reduce. When it comes to information, if you want to tell them more, tell them less and you’ll tell them more.

Research methodologies matter. Quality analysis is important. But making the data visual, creating research that you can see, ensuring the information tells a story - that’s absolutely critical.

RELATABILITY

Use symbols that are relatable and metaphors that are understandable.

Research that makes a difference has to be seen not only with the eyes of your head, but also with the eyes of your heart. It makes sense rationally, and you get it viscerally.

Think about connecting with the individual- and so you will connect with all. What is most personal- is most universal.

VARIETY

Vary the colours, concepts, styles: mix it up. Elegant variety matters. Statistics should be fun- like animation. People should be able to play with data. Research reports should not sit on shelves but be interacted with, and shared on social media, or put up on reception walls (like this one!) or beamed onto buildings.

So to ensure your big data doesn’t become boring data use SIMPLICITY, RELATABILITY and VARIETY to tell the story.

Until the last excel table has been transformed there’s work to be done.


About Research Visualisation

In a world of big data, we’re for visual data. We believe in the democratisation of information, and that research should be accessible to everyone, not just to the stats junkies. 

We’re passionate about turning tables into visuals, data into videos and reports into presentations. As researchers, we understand the methods, but we’re also designers and we know what will communicate, and how to best engage. 

Whether you’re looking to conduct research from scratch, or if you have existing data that you want to bring to life – get in touch with the McCrindle team.


McCrindle's new office!

Thursday, March 02, 2017

Our team at McCrindle are excited to announce that we have moved into a new office at Suite 105, 29 Solent Circuit Baulkham Hills NSW 2153 (all of our other phone and contact details remain the same).

Our newly furbished office space in Norwest Business Park, Sydney has been custom designed by our team to facilitate constant innovation, world-class research and creative storytelling.

Acknowledging how important physical spaces are, our new office is more than double in size of our previous space (where our growing team was getting quite squeezed!).

The new office space has been strategically designed by our team to facilitate collaboration and innovation. The open plan layout includes communal kitchen facilities, break out meeting rooms and a sizable board meeting room with an accompanying viewing room, which has been purposefully designed to host focus groups.

In the knowledge that healthy things grow, it is exciting to see our office space facilitating our growing team of 11. Our newly opened office is an exciting milestone for us as a business, and we are enjoying the interaction and productivity this space is providing. At McCrindle we celebrate the wins, prioritise people and give our best (you can read more about our McCrindle priorities and values here).

We would be delighted to welcome all our new and existing clients to drop in to our new office space some time for a catch up or to host a meeting, research focus groups or in-depth interviews.

Get in touch

McCrindle Research

A: Suite 105, 29 Solent Circuit Baulkham Hills NSW 2153

P: 02 8824 3422

E: info@mccrindle.com.au

The future of meetings and events

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

As our McCrindle Speakers are regular contributors to meetings and events around Australia, it was our privilege to conduct research for the Melbourne Convention Bureau’s 25-year anniversary of the Asia-Pacific Incentives and Meetings Expo (AIME), into the mega trends affecting the future of meetings, and for Mark McCrindle to present the findings at the event.

The aim of the research was to understand how the global meetings industry is changing, through the influences of social trends, new technology and changing attendee expectations.

Findings from the full research report include the following:

  • Conference attendees are increasingly socially responsible, tech savvy and time poor
  • Attendees are looking for collaboration and networking, not just information
  • Meetings provide a place for human interaction, experiential learning and valuable professional investment
  • Customisation of the program structure and event experience is key
  • Augmented virtual reality and artificial intelligence transform the event experience
  • Ideas around venue design for the next generation.

DOWNLOAD THE FULL REPORT HERE

Some of the key research findings are outlined in The Future of meetings; 25 years of change infographic:


ABOUT MCCRINDLE SPEAKERS


At McCrindle, our team of professional speakers are in demand for their ability to clearly communicate the insights in engaging ways. Presenting at a variety of national and international events including keynote addresses at conferences, onsite professional development workshops and strategy briefings for senior leaders, the McCrindle speakers are recognised as leaders in tracking emerging issues, researching social trends, and are regarded as expert social researchers, futurists and story tellers.

To make an inquiry, please feel free to get in touch via email, or on 02 8824 3422.

External Trends Impacting the NFP Sector in 2017

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

The year 2017 has begun in an environment of perplexed global sentiment. From Brexit to the election of President Trump, the last 9 months have been far from a smooth ride on the world stage, showing a trend towards growing isolationism and increasing uncertainty.

At the national level, for most advanced economies, this uncertainty has bred an increase in nationalism, and a move away from globalisation. In Australia, our response – in part fuelled by our strong work ethic and historic undercurrent – makes us all just want to ‘get on with it’ and get the job done.

For the not for profit sector, this means working hard at strategic initiatives, managing external risk, and taking bold initiatives to engage donors. Our conversations with the NFP sector at this time of year often involves developing strategic brand tracking to measure public engagement, or testing specific brand assets to develop powerful advertising campaigns.

Yet, before delving into the tools of marketing and communications, it is critical that NFPs grasp the trends and undercurrents taking place in the external environment, particularly those that impact donor giving. Here are three trends we feel are critical for the NFP sector to grapple with in 2017:

1. Charity saturation and the need for brand differentiation

According to JBWere’s Cause Report (2016), Australia has 56,894 NFP organisation, one NFP for every 422 individuals. The number of not for profit organisations has doubled every 20 years over the last 60 years – and despite cancelling and closure of some charities by the ACNC, there are still around 10 new charities established every business day.

2. Overall decline in public giving necessitating new fundraising initiatives

Charitable giving has been lower in Australia in 2016 than in years prior. The NAB Charitable Giving Index indicates that national giving is down, by a decrease of 0.3% growth in the 12 months leading up to Aug 2016. This compares to 5.1% growth a year earlier. While there has been resilience in the Australian economy during this time, consumers are more cautious than before, reflected by these figures.

3. Younger generations giving less and seeking experiential engagement

60% of Australian donors agree that charities will face a more difficult future as younger generations don’t seem to volunteer in an ongoing way or give as much as the generations before them (McCrindle Australian Communities Trends Report, 2016). NAB data shows that those aged 15 to 24 give just $135 on average, annually, to charities, compared to those over 65 who give $452 on average.

BEHIND THE TRENDS

A number of these trends are explained by a rise in the cost of living across Australia. Take Sydney housing as a case example of the growing cost of living pressures. In 1975, Sydney house prices were just 5x average annual earnings. By 1995 they had risen to 6x average annual earnings, but today – when taking the average annual salary of $80,000 per year and the median house price of well over $1 million – the average house price is 13x the cost of an average annual full-time salary.

Australian donors are finding it more difficult to give, and to give regularly. As the traditional, dependable, regular donor shrinks as a proportion of all donors, new types of donors are emerging –brand responders and opportunity givers.

ENGAGING AD-HOC DONORS


Brand responders and opportunity givers donate sporadically, in an ad-hoc way. These types of donors are still more likely to give to a single charity or cause than to multiple causes, and have a strong preference for a particularly cause or charity.

Through speaking with more than a dozen NFP experts, 54 donors face to face, and surveying 1,500 Australians, we have identified four key next steps for the charitable sector to take into account in 2017:

1. Develop Multi-Tiered Levels of Engagement

Donors want to be involved with charities, but on their own terms. Rather than fixed contracts, they desire flexible giving and varied involvement. The demand for personalisation is growing as donors expect charity engagement suited to their age and life stage.

2. Build Communities for Social Impact

Australian donors desire to be part of a community of activists that bring about social change. They want to be involved in something bigger than themselves, knowing that together they can make a difference. This is not just ‘clicktivism’, which is seen merely as a form of virtue signalling through web-based activist organisations. Globally, networks like Avaaz.org and Change.org have created opportunities for real-life engagement of social issues, facilitated first through online platforms.

3. Communicate Results in Real-Time

Donors want real-time results and transparent reporting of admin costs. Platforms such as GiveDirectly.org now enable donors to give directly to an individual living in extreme poverty via mobile giving. KIVA, a lending platform facilitating crowd-sourced micro loans across the globe, displays the giving of loans in real-time via an interactive world map. When donors have this type of visibility, trust and engagement follow.

4. Create Fun and Engaging Experiences

The donor of the future is looking for participation and memories created through experiences. Nearly half (46%) of 18-29 year-old Australian donors have volunteered for a charity (compared to 31% of 30+ donors), and they are looking to do so in new, fresh ways. This is not just contained to events and a physical presence at sporting events or music festivals. Many young donors (1 in 4 of those aged 18-29, compared to just 11% of 30+ year-old donors) prefer the creative challenge of conducting their own fundraising events, providing them with the opportunity to harness their unique gifts and talents for a great cause.

-Eliane Miles

FOR MORE INFORMATION

For more information on Australian Donors, see the Australian Communities Trends Report Infographic.

Connect with us if you would like more information on environmental scanning for strategic forecasting.

ABOUT ELIANE MILES

Eliane Miles is a social researcher, trends analyst and Director of Research at the internationally recognised McCrindle. As a data analyst she understands the power of big data to inform strategic direction. Managing research across multiple sectors and locations, she is well positioned to understand the mega trends transforming the workplace, household and consumer landscapes. Her expertise is in telling the story embedded in the data and communicating the insights in visual and practical ways. Download Eliane's professional speaking pack here.

To inquire about Eliane presenting at your next event, please feel free to get in touch.

Understanding Generation Y Globally and Locally

Monday, February 20, 2017

Generation Pessimism

We think of the younger generations having youthful idealism and optimism yet the 2017 Global Millennial Study by Deloitte shows that the 20’s and early 30-somethings are not feeling optimistic. Just 1 in 4 believes the year ahead will see an improvement politically and again a minority- only 1 in 3 believe we will see an uptick economically.

Where’s our share?

While it is little surprise that their number one concern is terrorism/political tension (56% are concerned), the second biggest concern (43%) is income inequality. There is a strong feeling amongst Generation Y (Millennials) that they are being left behind in this era of flat wages growth and massive home and living cost increases. Our recent ABS income and wealth analysis shows that Gen Y as a whole have 7% of Australia’s private wealth while they are more than twice this (15%) of the population while the older Boomers have an economic share three times that of their population share. There is a growing series of forecasts indicating that this may well be the first generation since the Great Depression which will end up behind their parents economically.

Big challenges but are they too big…

This study shows that Millennials, particularly in the developed world feel somewhat disempowered with a sense of high responsibility yet low influence to shape the challenges of the environment, social equality and direction of the country. They are key contributors to society and believe that working within the system rather than radically fighting against it in a revolutionary approach is the best way forward.

Moving on…but to full time roles

Almost 1 in 2 (48%) expect to leave their current role within 2 years while less than 1 in 3 (31%) plan on still being there in 5 years. While the gig economy sounds exciting, almost three times as many (70%) would prefer full time work than a freelance work life (25%). Yet the challenge for Australian Gen Y’s is that while unemployment is still quite low (5.7%), the workforce is trending away from full time roles. In the last year, the Australian economy has added 130,000 part time roles but lost 40,000 full time roles.

The dot com kids see the downside of tech

Millennials are more negative than positive when it comes to technology particularly regarding the impacts it is having in the workforce. While it aids productivity, economic growth and flexibility, the majority of this generation believe that it will force them to retrain (51%) and that it is making the workplace more impersonal and less human (53%).

But they are warm towards Gen Z

The new next generation (Gen Z, born since 1995) is well regarded by Gen Y with most Y’s (53%) believing that the next generation will positively transform the workplace. They also believe that Gen Z are well equipped and “futureproofed” in the workplace because of their creativity, flexibility and engaging leadership style.

WATCH MARK'S FULL INTERVIEW ON WEEKEND SUNRISE HERE

Australia's Cooking Landscape for Hello Fresh [Case Study]

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

We were delighted to partner with Hello Fresh in conducting new research into Australians weeknight cooking behaviours and decision-making processes.

The Report

These insights are explored in the thought leadership report titled Australia’s Cooking Landscape, which reveals the research insights into Australian weeknight cooking behaviours and decision-making processes.

The full report is available for download here.

The Infographic

The key insights have been pulled together in the infographic below, titled A week in the life of cooks in the Aussie home and reveals how:

  • Australians value homemade meals,
  • Many find it difficult to find time to plan for their weekly meals,
  • Despite being busy and time poor, many Australians still allocate time in their week to spend at the grocery story,
  • Not only are Australians finding it stressful cooking for their household, but ‘food inspiration can sometimes create overwhelming expectations’, and
  • Australians have a strong desire to be more adventurous in the kitchen and to create a variety of healthy weeknight dinners.

GET IN TOUCH

For more information on our research and visualisation services, please feel free to check out our Research Pack, or get in touch!

P: 02 8824 3422

E: info@mccrindle.com.au

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