First Nations careers

The artwork by Jordan Lovegrove, a Ngarrindjeri man, of Dreamtime Creative, shows the journey of the Fair Work Ombudsman (the Entity) towards reconciliation. We are committed to increasing the representation of First Nations people in our workforce and have a range of employment pathways and programs designed to build and support our First Nations workforce.

Acknowledgement of Country

The Fair Work Ombudsman acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and their continuing connection to land, waters, skies, and community. We pay our respect to them, their Cultures, and Elders past and present. We extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today.

Applying to work with us

We strongly encourage First Nations people to apply for any role they’re interested in and we also offer specific employment pathways for First Nations people.

Affirmative measures

Some roles are designated as affirmative measures employment opportunities, which means they are only open to First Nations people. Affirmative measures opportunities help First Nations people overcome employment barriers and increase the diversity of our workforce.

You can find our current vacancies on our Current vacancies page. You can also register for Job Alerts so that you’re notified of future opportunities.

Entry-level employment programs

You’ll receive on the job and formal training to help establish your professional career. Positions are located across all Australian states and territories.

We offer the following programs:

You don’t need qualifications to apply. During the program, you’ll complete a Diploma in Government. You’ll start ongoing employment at an APS 3 level advancing to an APS 4 on successful completion of the program.

The graduate pathway is for First Nations people who have completed an undergraduate degree or higher. All graduates are encouraged to apply, regardless of the degree you hold. You’ll start ongoing employment at an APS 4 level advancing to an APS 5 on successful completion of the program.

Image of Tamara

“The FWO is an amazing place to work, the genuine support and care that’s provided is truly exceptional. Everyone is valued no matter their background. It’s really inspiring to be part of a workplace as accepting and caring as the FWO. The work is great, and I love what I do and being able to help the community in creating better workplace practise that is fair and to educate people about their rights and obligations. “

– Tamara, Fair Work Indigenous Apprentice, based in ACT

Image of Benson

“Being able to do work that has a real impact is what I find the most fulfilling at the FWO. I’m also grateful for the genuine care and support I’ve received since I’ve started, and the desire to see me develop and thrive in my role.”

– Benson, Fair Work Indigenous Apprentice, based in VIC

Image of Lisa

"I have to honestly say working at FWO is awesome, the support I’ve received from my colleagues to Executive Directors has been amazing. No matter who you are or what level you are at, I have always been treated as an equal and fully supported when I needed it. Coming from a limited education background and now having the confidence to talk to anyone is a personal achievement of mine. Being a grandmother of 7, FWO has given me the flexibility to support my family at short notice with no negative consequences for my needs."

– Lisa, Fair Work Inspector, based in NT

Ways we support First Nations employees

We support First Nations employees through:

  • First Nations mentoring and buddy programs
  • First Nations Employee Network - a supportive forum for our First Nations employees, and a channel for their voices to be heard and shape the agency as a model workplace
  • option to join our Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) working group
  • an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Support Line – through our Employee Assistance Program (EAP) which gives easy access to free, confidential coaching and support
  • access to paid cultural leave per calendar year
  • ceremonial and cultural leave to participate in significant activities associated with their culture
  • flexible working arrangements
  • leave for employees to attend or participate in NAIDOC week activities.

For more information about our workplace conditions, access our Enterprise Agreement.

Hear more from our First Nations Employees

Image of Kooliha

“What I find most fulfilling working at the Fair Work Ombudsman is that in every hurdle I’ve faced as a First Nation woman, FWO has supported me through it all. The environment and the people have given me the drive to never give up and they continue to be my biggest supporters. I’ve never felt as ‘culturally safe’ as I do at the OFWO. The OFWO is truly a harmonious workplace”.

– Kooliha, Legal Support Officer, based in QLD

Image of Felicia

“The best aspect of working at FWO is the flexibility and the amount of support I receive from my supervisor, work colleagues and mentor, this has significantly contributed to creating a safe and enjoyable workplace. The most interesting part of my job is the continuous learning and development which fosters my innovative thinking."

– Felicia, Information Governance Officer, based in QLD

Our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Employment Strategy

The FWO is committed to enhancing our representation of First Nations people, recognising that their unique skills and diverse experiences will greatly benefit our agency and enable us to better meet the needs of the community.

Learn more about our approach in our Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Employment Strategy 2022-2025  .

Our commitment to reconciliation

Our vision for reconciliation is for a fair, diverse and socially inclusive workplace where we build understanding and respect amongst our employees and community for the histories and living cultures of First Nations people and their contribution to the social, economic and cultural life of Australia. This understanding and respect will be reflected in our services.

Our Reconciliation Action Plan

Our Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) has been developed in consultation with our employees and the RAP Working Group. We’ve had a RAP in place since 2009 and continue to advance reconciliation.

You can access our full RAP on our website Fair Work Ombudsman Reconciliation Action Plan July 2020 - July 2022  .

Our Reconciliation artwork by Jordan Lovegrove

Our Reconciliation artwork by Jordan Lovegrove

The artwork by Jordan Lovegrove, a Ngarrindjeri man, of Dreamtime Creative, shows the journey of the Fair Work Ombudsman (the Entity) towards reconciliation.

The large, combined meeting place in the middle represents the Entity, and the large pathway going through the artwork represents our reconciliation journey. The pathway increases in width to represent growth. The smaller meeting places represent different Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities and people, while the pathways leading out to them show the Entity building stronger connections. The patterned areas represent the different Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander regions and places around Australia that the Entity is reaching.

Related information