A cover letter is a professional introduction to yourself, and your government job application. Therefore, the aim of your letter is to say who you are, what you are applying for, and why your application shows that you are worth an interview.
A cover letter for a government job is different to your statements addressing selection criteria. Both documents serve different purposes and should be handled differently. If the application pack suggests that you write your statements addressing the selection criteria within the cover letter, then you are dealing with an entirely different situation again. Welcome to the confusing world of public service jobs!
If you’re linking claims against selection criteria (which you possibly will be if looking for a position in the Public Service), you shouldn’t have to draft a very long cover letter that re-states what’s previously in your selection criteria comments later on. Actually, the federal government official examining the application is not going to pay as much attention to the information in your letter as your curriculum vitae and claims to the selection criteria, thus your cover letter will not have much bearing on the end result of your application.
The selection board for the government position will definitely observe that you’ve included a well-formatted and competent looking cover letter; it makes up the very first perception of your written application.
An opening sentence that says what placement you’re making a claim for, it’s job / placement / advertisement number, the date it was announced and what you’re attaching in your application package, for example. “please find included my curriculum vitae, statements against selection criteria, report of qualifications…” is crucial in a government job cover letter.
A middle sentence declaring your crucial claims for the position needs to be brief and to the point. Don’t go into too much detail but at the same time make it obvious you have composed this cover letter especially for this government job, and it is not a pre-formatted template that you’ve filled in.
Public Service Jobs can be found at the government jobs vacancy pages of publicservicejobs.com.au – the best location to get a council, state or commonwealth government job. All jobs in the one location with no need to visit 3 different government internet sites!
Within Australia, Government Jobs happen to be divided up among The Federal Government, The State Government, and the Local Government (or Local Councils, in most cases). Should you be looking for a public service job you have got to deal with the 3 governments, as they do not advertise their vacancies on the same websites, which regrettably implies searching through no less than 3 different web sites, sometimes more.
Most people start their search for a government job by looking at the Commonwealth Government (or Federal Government) so the focus of this article will be employment conditions within the Commonwealth Government.
In the Federal government departments and business units, staff members are employed beneath the Public Service Act 1999 which is known as the Australian Public Service (also referred to as the shortened, APS). While all personnel are employed within the same Act, each organisation possesses its own certified agreement or equivalent, and in an increasing proportion of circumstances new personnel are employed under Workplace Agreements (or AWAs, which became popular in Australia’s workplace reforms).
The majority of departments put up their agreements on their websites so you can see exactly what the workplace conditions are before you apply for a job. A number of long term employees who work for Federal Departments are engaged under other Acts, such as Australian Defence Force employees who are employed under the Defence Act. Defence Force individuals are therefore not deemed members of the APS.
The APS Commission is a central organisation inside the APS which has a critical guidance role in making contributions to the long term future capability and durability of the Australian Public Service. They’ve got their very own website and oversea specific things like appeals within the APS, Workforce Planning policies, Research into the make-up of the APS, employment conditions and corporate governance and they also possess a common training division.
If you are fortunate enough to get a government job and find yourself employed in the Australian Public Service you will be employed within a Australian Public Service classification. Classifications go from APS1 (lowest) to APS6, and then EL1 (Executive Level 1) to EL2. Above EL2 is the Senior Executive Service (highest). Generally, agencies will describe classifications according to their own specific responsibilities, and in some cases will broadband positions.
A broadband covers more than one APS classification. For example, Centrelink has an employment classification that they refer to as Centrelink Band 2, and this incorporates both the APS 3 and APS 4.
Each agency will determine what they expect of each Broadband and how to progress past barriers and into higher classifications.
Government jobs in Australia are normally not well advertised and hard to find unless you already work for the government. The Public Service Jobs webpage can help you, with links through to Commonwealth, State and Local Government job boards, together with lots of tips on how to find and apply for the government job of your dreams.