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Tim Brown

Finding a job in ACT with no security clearance

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Hello all

 

We have just been granted 189 visa - Hooray and we are considering where to live. Canberra is top of the list at the moment. My biggest reservation though is finding a job without being an Australian citizen. I have looked at the job sites and the majority of jobs in ACT specify Australian citizens for security clearance reasons. I work in IT and in the UK my skills are in demand (by accident rather than design - it's just fortunate). I know that ACT is particularly good for IT jobs in 2016 so in a way I feel quite hopeful. So my questions are

 

1. Is it madness to move to ACT with PR. Would I really struggle to find work

2. Does anyone have experience of working in IT in ACT. Is there a decent sized private sector. Does everything revolve around government or are there other sectors?

3. I know you can't work in government with a PR visa. Is security clearance for private companies the same? Or are the job sites just being picky and if they like you enough then there are ways around it? I did government work in the UK and employed people from all nationalities and we were happy to get them security cleared (though if someone had just been holiday to the tribal regions of Afghanistan then we rolled our eyes about it).

 

May thanks for any/all replies.

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You can work in local government with pr but not federal government. Some folk enjoy short term contractual work and there is a bit of that around but you could still be stymied by the need for security clearance as as lot of contract work is with the Feds through third parties.

 

I guess it all depends on your skill set add to how in demand you will be. It can take months to get something, recruitment can be slow so be prepared for 3-6 month process

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I work in communications so not related to your field but got work in private enterprise easily (though that's a few years ago now). Not having citizenship definitely rules you out of lots of jobs though. You just need to be more flexible. I worked for a company that contracted to government...and there were lots of roles like that when I was there. The downside to non government is that the salary is often less.

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The government jobs are inflexible about security clearance but I'd have thought there's be enough private work for you in the short term. Long term, you can apply for citizenship as soon as you're eligible, problem sorted.


Scot by birth, emigrated 1985 | Aussie husband applied UK spouse visa Jan 2015, granted March 2015, moved to UK May 2015 | Returned to Oz June 2016

"The stranger who comes home does not make himself at home but makes home itself strange." -- Rainer Maria Rilke

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Not all federal departments require clearance/citizenship (although most do require citizenship to be fair) and if you have the right skill set for the job most will sponsor at least your baseline clearance. Generally you need to use an agency like Hays/Hudson for these roles.

 

There is a lot of contract work in the ACT which is something to consider although this obviously can be heavily dependent on what's happening in government.

 

There are jobs in the private sector, although a lot obviously have contracts with Fed Gov so again clearance comes in to play.

 

All in all the ACT is an awesome place, I struggled with the whole clearance thing when I first arrived (5 years ago) but once you find your feet it is (within reason and skills depending) easy to get employment.

 

One thing to remember however things can take a long time here, and often you hear nothing for weeks then things kick into action, the amount of times I have applied for something heard nothing for a few weeks, assumed I haven't got and then get a call for an interview is staggering, so my advise is don't panic, things will work out :)

 

As mentioned above I think having PR is a good thing and will help a lot with many roles, and Shared Services (ACT local gov) are cool with that. All their jobs are advertised on their web site btw.


Later days - Dave and Joanne

-------------------------------------------------------------

State Sponsored Visa Granted 20Jan11 - Arrived in Canberra 22Sep11 - Citizens Mar16

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Hi Tim, we're moving to Canberra in 3 months from now and I'm more or less in the same spot as you are. It is no issue to find work in the Netherlands as an IT Infrastructure Project Manager/Service manager but up till now 99.9% of the advertised jobs in Canberra fitting my skill set require Australian citizenship/basic/nv1 clearance. :(

We're moving anyway as the missus already has a job secured and I will just see how it goes. Worst case scenario I will do something else entirely or look into Sydney to get at least some experience in Australia. (everything else has been said already, local government is OK, private sector is relatively small or works for federal gov...)

 

Will keep you posted on my adventures as soon as I'm arrived!

 

(what's your area of expertise?)


 

 

 

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Moved here in 2012 and was in a similar position as you. There is enough private work which doesn't require clearance but the vast majority are public service etc. It's not impossible and depending on your skillset you could land work for many of the managed services companies here in Canberra. They do still have work for Federal Departments but equally work that non-cleared staff can do. It'll be a question of casting your net far and wide across Canberra and not worrying too much about the commute. Once you can apply for citizenship do so and then the rest of the market opens.

 

Happy to answer any specific questions so feel free to message me.


 

 

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Hello all

 

We have just been granted 189 visa - Hooray and we are considering where to live. Canberra is top of the list at the moment. My biggest reservation though is finding a job without being an Australian citizen. I have looked at the job sites and the majority of jobs in ACT specify Australian citizens for security clearance reasons. I work in IT and in the UK my skills are in demand (by accident rather than design - it's just fortunate). I know that ACT is particularly good for IT jobs in 2016 so in a way I feel quite hopeful. So my questions are

 

1. Is it madness to move to ACT with PR. Would I really struggle to find work

2. Does anyone have experience of working in IT in ACT. Is there a decent sized private sector. Does everything revolve around government or are there other sectors?

3. I know you can't work in government with a PR visa. Is security clearance for private companies the same? Or are the job sites just being picky and if they like you enough then there are ways around it? I did government work in the UK and employed people from all nationalities and we were happy to get them security cleared (though if someone had just been holiday to the tribal regions of Afghanistan then we rolled our eyes about it).

 

May thanks for any/all replies.

 

There are a few around - and you'll only need one to come good :-)

 

https://www.seek.com.au/job/32172016?pos=36&ref=beta&tier=no_tier&type=standard&userqueryid=805a5087aa0edb1231f1b7772ef4f53a-2071553&whereid=3100

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OK, they do not ask for a Security Clearance... But asking Australian Citizenship for this?!?!

 

Citizenship.png


 

 

 

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Wow! that is a little odd, although it will be a franchise so perhaps there is a condition for such a business.


Later days - Dave and Joanne

-------------------------------------------------------------

State Sponsored Visa Granted 20Jan11 - Arrived in Canberra 22Sep11 - Citizens Mar16

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