Benchmarking Reports

2021 PAC Australia Benchmarking Survey


Since 2003, PAC Australia has coordinated a national benchmarking exercise to collect vital data on services, activities, and employment conditions in performing arts centres across Australia. The data collected has become an important and powerful tool for planning, resourcing, and demonstrating the value of presenting organisations.

The 2021 Benchmarking Survey is now active and venues can begin submitting their data for either the 2020/21 Financial Year, or 2021 Calendar Year, depending on how organisations prefer to report.

For the first time, non-PAC Australia members are also invited to complete the survey (although only PAC Australia members will be eligible to receive the final reports FOC).

It has never been more important to have an accurate picture of the activity and operations of performing arts centres. Since the last survey in 2019 there have been profound and lasting impacts on the way presenters, producers, and audiences operate so the 2021 benchmarking survey captures the depth and breadth of these impacts and sets a baseline for industry response and recovery over the next decade.

Responses to the survey will need to be submitted by Monday, 28th February 2022.

Even if there has been minimal activity in your performing arts centre in 2020/21, reporting your venue information and activity details is still critical.

Two benchmarking reports are published capturing Venue Charges and Staff Salaries, and Economic Activity, along with an interactive dashboard hosted in partnership between PAC Australia and Culture Counts. The data collected will also be shared with our state-based counterparts (VAPAC, Stage Queensland, NAPACA, SAPA and CircuitWest), so your efforts completing the survey will be rewarded with well-informed advocacy on both state and federal levels.

You can download the survey and view the support video below.


Video shortcuts: 

0.00 – 3.37    Introduction to the survey – why this is important!

3.37                Changes to how we are collecting the data – spreadsheet vs survey How to use the spreadsheet

9.28                How to complete the salaries section

11.09              Finishing the survey – ensuring you’ve completed all sections, then saving and sending to

12.20              Specific sections – the impact of COVID-19 and new policy questions

13.42              Due date and how to contact PAC Australia with any questions.


Our two key industry reports are now available to help drive your business development and broader sector development. The 2019 survey respondents represented a wide range of performing arts centres, demonstrating the breadth of PAC Australia membership. With more content this year, the reports provide even more valuable information, particularly around attendances, programming, and policies.

Our 2019 Economic Activity Report measures the scale of operations and economic activity of performing arts centres nationally. The survey provides benchmarking data to assist management of arts centres and support planning for new performance spaces and programs.

Our 2019 Venue Charges and Salaries Report provides comprehensive industry information as a tool for performing arts centres to review the salaries and charges associated with arts centre operation and to benchmark against others nationally.



PAC Australia is  able to present the reports in an online, searchable format. This means that you can now  compare standards such as staffing levels, salaries, turnover, attendance, levels of entrepreneurial activity etc with venues of similar attributes.

Members having completed the surveys contributing to the 2019 reports can access the associated reports and dashboards free of charge. Click here to check if your organisation is included. Reports and access to the Online Benchmarking Dashboards are available for purchase to non-participating members and the wider industry. Members receive significant discounts. Please be in touch if you’re interested in purchasing the Venue Charges and Salaries report or dashboard access.

The 2019 version looks and is accessed a little differently, but you can check out the video below based on the 2017 data to give you a flavour of what is possible.


PAC Australia Benchmarking Dashboard Webinar from PAC Australia on Vimeo.

(Benchmarking Dashboard Terms of Use)



The 2013, 2015 & 2017 Economic Activity and Venue Charges & Salaries reports are still available for download.

 PREVIEW – 2017 Economic Activity Report

 PREVIEW – 2017 Venue Charges and Salaries Report

 2015 Economic Activity Report – now available free of charge (download is the full report)

 2015 Venue Charges & Salaries Report – available for purchase (contact us for more information)

 2013 Economic Activity Report – now available free of charge (download is the full report)

 2013 Venue Charges & Salaries Report – now available free of charge (download is the full report)