The Department of Human Services (DHS) received 41,000 applications across its core three programs – Centrelink, Medicare, and the Child Support Agency – for just 1,250 jobs! Many of the roles were open only to applicants already working in the public service. At the time this article was written by HC Online, 923 job offers had been made with 512 acceptances.

When I consult with clients who are interested in applying for Government roles at Federal, State and Local levels – especially those working external to the Government with no current or previous experience in the sector – I always emphasise the competitiveness involved and the sheer volume of applications these departments can receive. I value being upfront, direct and honest with prospective and new clients (even existing clients who are wanting to transition out of the private sector into Government/public sector) about the job market and its sectors, so that clients gain a realistic expectation and can make an informed decision as to whether they want to expend the time, energy and $s to apply and prepare the application addressing selection criteria.

Applying for government roles at entry level (e.g. APS3 or APS4 for federal government; AO3 and AO4 for Queensland government) is considerably easier in gaining consideration and being shortlisted. The roles that present more difficulty for clients with no government experience are the roles advertised at higher levels. I do not discourage clients from applying for these roles – as long as they have the qualifications (if applicable); the experience; and importantly, that they can demonstrate criteria in the context of the responsibilities of the role advertised.

I cannot stress the importance of developing and addressing the selection criteria component to the highest possible standard. Make sure you thoroughly read the criteria component against the responsibilities of the role. If you are then 100% certain – I say to clients they need to see, hear and feel the ‘green light’ with absolutely no element of doubt – then continue on with the journey in preparing the selection criteria to the best and highest possible standard. When in doubt for whatever reason – do not do it I say!

Do not forget to continue on with reading the hundreds of selection criteria examples I have been posting on my Blog since July 2009. These have helped and even ‘saved’ many clients from the uphill battle and stress involved in preparing these applications. I’ll be posting many more again in 2016 each month.

I’m here to help market you!


Annie Cerone

P.S. Happy festive season everybody and all the best for 2016.