Australian employers say the outlook for the next three months for employment is positive with generally hopeful hiring intentions, the latest report shows.

Overall some 15% of employers forecast an increase in staffing levels, 4% anticipate a decrease and 78% expect no change, resulting in a Net Employment Outlook of plus 11%, according to the latest bulletin from Manpower Australia.

Payrolls are forecast to grow in businesses of all sizes during the coming three months with large employers report solid hiring intentions while some job gains are expected in both the medium and small size categories.

People looking for a new job will find that the strongest hiring prospects are reported in New South Wales and the Australia Capital Territory (ACT) where outlook is plus 14%, followed by Tasmania at 11% and then Victoria 10%.

Queensland employers report a cautiously optimistic outlook of 9%, while some growth is expected in both South Australia and Northern Territory at 7%. The most cautious regional outlook is 6% in Western Australia.

Quarter on quarter, hiring prospects strengthened in five of eight regions. The most noteworthy improvements of 5% were in both Queensland and Tasmania, while the outlook is 4% stronger in ACT. However, employers in three regions report weaker hiring intentions, including Victoria where the outlook fell by 3%.

When compared with a year ago, hiring plans improved in seven of eight regions, including Western Australia where employers report a sharp increase of 21% and the Northern Territory Outlook was 10% stronger, while increases of 9% and 6% are reported in Tasmania and Queensland, respectively. Meanwhile, employers in Victoria report a decline of 2%.

In the finance, insurance and real estate sector the weakest labour market in eight years is anticipated in the April to June period, with employers reporting an outlook of 7%, down 4% quarter on quarter and down 6% year on year.

In manufacturing job seekers can expect a cautiously optimistic hiring pace in the coming quarter with an outlook of plus 8%, up 4% quarter on quarter and up 5% compared with a year ago.

Mining and construction employers forecast the strongest hiring pace in more than four years with an outlook of plus 12%, up 4% quarter on quarter and up 18% year on year. But the outlook is more modest in the public administration and education sector at plus 7%, down 2% quarter on quarter but still 2% above the same period in 2016.

In transportation and utilities respectable workforce gains are expected in the second quarter of 2017, with employers reporting an outlook of plus 12%, some 4% up quarter on quarter and 2% higher year on year.

In wholesale and retail employers anticipate a mild hiring climate in the forthcoming quarter with an outlook of plus 5%, stable quarter on quarter and 5% up year on year.