Read our newest research jobs report Covid impact report: 18 months in. What is the research job situation in Australia?

Check out our  Brochure for university purchasers
What is PostAc?

PostAc® is a job search engine and treasure trove of information about the job market for researchers. Our Machine Learning technology shows you the potential job market research graduates. Any graduate from any discipline – literary scholars to astrophysicists – will find jobs they can do in our database.

Many people start a PhD wanting to be an academic, but on discovering the difficulties of the academic job market, change their mind. Some people finish and find themselves under-employed or on a series of tenuous contracts, dreaming of some certainty and a wage that reflects their years of hard work and effort.

PostAc® uses artificial intelligence to help you find jobs and employers outside academia that need your amazing research skills. 80% of these jobs you can search on PostAc do not say ‘PhD’ in the ad, so you would normally have trouble finding them. Our algorithm was trained on a large data set to spot these ‘nerdy jobs’. Our new product has both jobs available in the past and jobs you can apply for right now so you get access to the full spectrum of options.

I am thrilled to be able to offer this positive way forward for people who are struggling with the question “what next?”

How can I access PostAc?

Currently PostAc University is only available to universities in Australia on subscription – we are currently developing a product for the UK.

Please email to discuss the release timeline for our products and your subscription options.

If you would like your university to purchase the product, you can direct people to our Brochure for university purchasers

If you are a student and would like your university to get PostAc, you can express your interest here and we will let them know!

Access our free course on finding a job outside academia via Thinkific

During the Pandemic, I am offering a free lecture via Zoom about our research findings. Please email to set up a time. You can see the materials and staging details for the free lecture here.

The postac team

The PostAc team is a multi-disciplinary team from ANU with strengths in research education, sociology, machine learning and business development.

In the above photo (inside @thesiswhisperer’s  office), from left to right is the current PostAc team: Dr Will Grant, Dr Lindsay Hogan, Assoc Prof Hanna Suominen, Prof Inger Mewburn (@thesiswhisperer), Chirath Hettiarachchi, Chenchen Xu and Ran Cui.

We’d like to acknowledge the foundational work of Dr Rachel Pitt from University of Queensland, who first had the idea of looking at job ads, and the assistance of Burning Glass Technologies, who have generously supplied data that has made the continuation of this project possible over a number of years.

Here’s a list of our jointly published work on Post PhD employability:

Pitt, R. & Mewburn, I. (2016) Academic superheroes? A critical analysis of academic job descriptions, Journal of Higher Education Policy and Management, 38(1), 88 – 101.

Mewburn, I., Grant, W., Suominen, H. & Kizimchuk, S. (2018) A machine learning analysis of the non- academic employment opportunities for Ph.D Graduates in Australia, Higher Education Policy.

Xu, C., Mewburn, I., Grant, W. J., & Suominen, H. (2019). PostAc®: A visual interactive search, exploration, and analysis platform for PhD intensive job postings. In: Proceedings of the The 57th Annual Meeting of the Association for Computational Linguistics  (ACL). Stroudsburg, PA, USA: ACL.

Mewburn, I, Grant, W and Souminen, H (2016) Tracking Trends in industry demand for Australia’s advanced research workforce, Department of Industry, Canberra, Australia.

Mewburn, I, Souminen, H and Grant, W (2020) Matching PhD graduates with industry jobs, Centre for the Public Awareness of Science, ANU, Canberra.

18 months in – exploring the impact on Australia’s research workforce August, 2021

What are people saying about PostAc?

  • “Eye opening!” (Biology PhD)
  • “This is an amazing job search site!” (Biology PhD)
  • “A fresh vision about our job choices” (Sociology PhD)
  • “Gives me a lot of hope I will be successful in the future” (Astrophysics PhD)
  • “There are a lot of possibilities out there and there are concrete steps and strategies we can use to get where we want to be” (Chemistry PhD)
  • “I know the skills I need to develop to get a non-academic job” (Biology PhD)
  • “Love PostAc! a positive approach to non-academic jobs” (Sociology PhD)
  • “Great to have actual data about the job market” (Sociology PhD)
  • “Built my confidence to find jobs outside academia” (Physics PhD)
  • “Now I know what is beyond academia!” (Sociology PhD)
  • “Loved spending time on PostAc exploring possibilities” (Sociology PhD)
  • “Looking for a job outside Academia feels validated now” (Chemistry PhD)
  • “Confirmed in my mind that there ARE jobs outside of academia – which I am relieved about” (Chemistry PhD)
  • “Very useful! Can’t wait to explore it more” (Biology PhD)
  • Very useful to identify the pros and cons of various non-academic jobs” (Biology PhD)

In the video below, three of our founders describe our motivations for designing PostAc and our ambitions for the product:

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