Women in Victoria are leading the nation to get on the tools, with nearly 40,000 females employed in the building and construction industry.

Master Builders Victoria analysis of ABS Labour Force figures show 39,217 Victorian women were employed in building and construction in August 2021.

The next highest states were New South Wales with 38,101, followed by Queensland with 31,670.

Nearly 1800 women in Victoria joined the building and construction industry in the 12 months to August 2021.

In Victoria, women made up 12.4 per cent of all employees (323,791) in the building and construction industry in August 2021.

However, women made up just 2.5 per cent (2861) of all construction trades workers in Victoria (112,957).

Victoria was still higher than Queensland (1134) and New South Wales (534) for female construction trades workers.

Of the 2861 Victorian women employed in construction trades, 731 were carpenters and joiners, 638 floor finishers, 941 wall and floor tilers, and 551 plumbers.

Alana Cini, 20, from Taylors Lakes, is one of the 731 Victorian women working as a carpentry apprentice.

She encouraged more young Victorian women to sign up for a trade, saying she loved working outdoors in a challenging but rewarding career.

“It feels so good to be back at work after lockdown and out of the house again,” she said.

“I love having the chance to work outside, especially in summer.

“And I’m enjoying having this opportunity to learn more about the industry.”

Master Builders Victoria CEO Rebecca Casson said it was pleasing to see Victoria leading the nation in the number of women in building and construction, but more needed to be done.

“Building and construction has always been a male-dominated industry, but that needs to change if our industry is to reduce skills shortages and have a thriving and sustainable future,” Ms Casson said.

“More women are active in building and construction now than in the past, but they still make up just 2.5 per cent of all construction trades workers in Victoria.

“Master Builders Victoria is committed to promoting gender equality in the workplace and on building and construction sites.

“We are making good progress, but we need to encourage more women like Alana to become fully qualified master trades.

“It was very pleasing to see that this year’s Master Builders Victoria Apprentice of the Year was awarded to a female, Carley Attard.”

As a member of the Victorian Government’s Building Industry Consultative Council, Master Builders Victoria has been working with others on the Council, such as LendLease, Multiplex and Master Plumbers, to advocate for more women in the building and construction industry.