Embassy of Australia
United States of America

HR Employment LES

Locally-Engaged Employment 

Ongoing employment

Employment at the Embassy is determined by an open, merit-based selection process. Anyone who is 18 years or older may apply for a position at the Embassy regardless of current citizenship, place of residence, visa or work authorisation status. However, to be eligible for selection, all candidates must satisfy the essential selection criteria and meet any security clearance requirements. A Selection Advisory Committee will recommend a merit ranking of all interviewed eligible candidates, regardless of current work authorisation status.

To work at the Embassy, it is a requirement under United States law that you must be either a United States citizen or a United States lawful permanent resident ("Green Card" holder), hold a valid dependant visa with current Employment Authorisation or be issued an ‘A’ class visa based upon your employment at the Embassy.

Under United States laws, an 'A' visa takes precedence over all other visa classes (including 'E', 'F', 'J' and ‘L’) except 'G' visas. If you are issued an 'A' visa by taking up an offer of employment at the Embassy all your family members must also be issued  or change to 'A' visas, even if they have another valid US visa.

If you do not have an 'A' visa, but are eligible to apply for one on the basis of an offer of employment from the Embassy, the Embassy will provide information on applying for the ‘A’ visa after the offer of employment is made. If your visa application is denied by a United States consular officer or withdrawn by US authorities, the offer of employment is void. Please note that principal 'A' class visa holders are not permitted to work outside the embassy (including paid or unpaid work).

You will have to apply for the ‘A' visa at a United States Embassy or Consulate-General outside the United States. The successful candidate is responsible for all costs, including travel and accommodation related to visa applications and commencement of employment.

The United States Department of State is now limiting 'A' visas for locally engaged staff to five years and recently stopped approving Employment Authorization Documents for dependents of locally engaged staff. Applicants who require an ‘A’ visa to take up a locally engaged position should be aware of this when considering applying for vacancies as their employment will be limited to a maximum of five years and their dependants will not be able to work. Ongoing employment will at all times be based on an employee's capacity to lawfully reside in the US. 

Please also note, when employees and their spouses change to ‘A’ visas from another visa type, and where the spouse has already been issued employment authorisation based upon that other visa type, the spouse’s employment authorization will no longer be valid when the ‘A’ visa is issued and the spouse will have to stop working.

Applicants with family members who would have to change to an ‘A’ visa to take up employment at the Embassy should seriously consider the implications of employment at the Embassy before accepting an offer of employment.

A-visa holders are required to file USCIS Form I-508 if and when they apply for US Lawful Permanent Residency (Green Card) or risk losing their US permanent resident status. (See uscis.gov > immigration forms > I-508.)

Go to Recruitment and Selection Process 

Terms and Conditions

The terms and conditions of employment for locally engaged staff (LES) are based primarily on Australian government and best practice employment conditions. However, the terms and conditions comply with labour laws specific to the US and the District of Columbia.

The Embassy offers LES an attractive remuneration package based on generous benefits. Benefits include 14 public holidays, 22 days recreation leave and 18 days personal leave per annum, heavily subsidised medical insurance plans, and flex leave (where eligible). More Information.            

Go to LES Terms and Conditions (full version) 

Temporary Contracts

Temporary employment opportunities arise from time to time for a number of reasons including:

  •  when permanent staff members in essential positions take leave; 
  • during the period prior to filling a vacancy; or

  • to manage fluctuations in workloads.

Temporary vacancies are usually filled on a short-term contract basis from those listed on the Embassy's tmeporary staff register. Most vacancies are full-time but less than 3 months in length. Types of temporary vacancies include executive/administrative assistant, registry/file assistant, receptionist, guard, and driver.

Only those already entitled to work in the United States are eligible for temporary employment. This includes US citizens, Green Card holders and holders of visas with current work authorisation. Individuals will be required to present proof of work authorisation before an offer is made.

Go to Applying for Temporary Work

Occasionally, longer term temporary vacancies (6 months or more) will occur and will be advertised on our Current Vacancies page.