Updated 6 months ago

The Australian job market offers many opportunities for expat workers, whether they are new to the workforce or highly experienced. International arrivals are attracted to Australia for many reasons, including the country’s high hourly and annual wages, a nationalised healthcare system (Medicare), and a high quality of life in a country which is generally very safe.

Applying for a job in Australia

Once you have a visa which allows for working rights, it is important to make sure your CV and interview skills are current. The Australian style of CV may be slightly different than your home country, so research this before applying for roles, or ask an employment agency to assist you. Having strong English language skills will also help, although many community centres offer low-cost or free classes that can help you with your skills, if necessary.

Australian jobs are predominantly advertised online through career and job search websites, where you can search for jobs by location and occupation. Although some jobs are still advertised in newspapers or trade magazines, this is becoming less common.

In addition to online advertising, recruitment (or employment) agencies are very common in Australia, with many jobs advertised directly and solely through agencies. There is no cost to employees to sign up with an agency, as agencies are paid fees by the employer. Therefore, many job seekers will register with multiple agencies. Agencies can assist with matching your skills to suitable jobs, and can also help with interview skills. Both short term contract and permanent roles can be obtained this way.

After you have applied for a job, if the employer is interested, you may be asked to do a telephone or Skype interview. This could then lead to a face-to-face interview, ideally followed by an offer of employment. If you are unsuccessful in your application, often companies or agencies will be able to offer you constructive advice for how you can do better next time, which is good to take advantage of, if available.

Job-hunting in Australia

The first thing to do upon arrival in Australia is applying for your personal identification number, or Tax File Number, at the Australian Taxation Office. Getting your personal Tax File Number (TFN) is compulsory for paying tax, which all workers must do, or if you wish to enrol in the public healthcare system. To get your personal Tax File Number, please visit the Australian Citizenship and Immigration website or the Australian Taxation Office website.

Most Australian business will pay via direct deposit into your bank account, so it is helpful to have an Australian bank account before applying for jobs. You may wish to check if your current bank has branches in Australia, otherwise, opening a bank account locally is a simple and easy process.

Australian salaries can vary greatly, depending on the role and your experience. The national hourly minimum wage for adults in Australia is $18.29 AUD, as of July 2017. Most full-time roles will also offer at least the national minimum of annual leave, which is four weeks per year, in addition to any national or state-specific public holidays. Flexibility is also seen as important to Australian employers, with many businesses giving their staff the opportunity to work from home or have flexible working hours.

 Useful links:

Government of Australia
Australian Employment Guide
Career One

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