Frequently Asked Questions
Find out all that you need to know about DIO
Click on the question to view the answer:
- What degree should I have?
- DIO welcomes applications from graduates of all disciplines as long as you can demonstrate strong analytical and communication skills.
- How can I join DIO?
- If you are a university graduate, you can apply via the Defence Graduate Development Program. Otherwise, DIO advertises individual positions throughout the year. Search for current vacancies on Defence APS Careers.
- What skills/background should I have?
- This depends on the position you are applying for. For instance, if you were applying for a role in finance, you would need the relevant qualifications. However, for general analytical positions, we look for strong skills in research, analysis, written and oral communication and teamwork, as well as the ability to quickly digest large amounts of information.
- Will I get to travel?
- This depends on your position. Analysts may undertake travel. DIO staff also attend conferences and we have several liaison positions overseas.
- Is DIO a spy organisation?
- No. DIO is an assessment organisation responsible for the analysis of intelligence. DIO employees do not engage in covert ‘spy’ activities or collect intelligence of any kind.
- How do I go about applying for a position in DIO?
- The application process involves the following stages:
1. Written application - address the selection criteria.
2. Assessment Centre (analytical rounds only) - tests analytical and teamwork skills.
3. Interview - usually with a 3-person panel, focussing on the selection criteria.
4. Organisational Suitability Assessment (OSA). A series of written tests and an interview with a trained psychologist to assess your suitability for working within a high security environment.
If your application is successful, you will then be required to undergo a:
5. Top Secret (Positive Vet) Security Clearance
- How long does it take to get a Top Secret clearance?
- This depends on how complex your background is (eg, your age, the countries you have lived in or visited) but usually 6–12 months.
- Do I have to be a specialist to work in DIO?
- You do not have to be a specialist to work within our organisation. DIO is a leading intelligence organisation because it targets exceptional individuals during the recruitment process. Vacancies are open to people from all disciplines and we employ people who can offer a variety of skills and not just an academic qualification. When we recruit, we look for problem-solving capabilities and the capacity to think innovatively and form judgments.
- Are all positions within DIO analytical positions?
- No. There is a wide variety of non-analytical positions within DIO. These positions allow people to develop and use skills in all areas of the business. Both analytical and non-analytical positions are listed in DIO’s current employment opportunities.
- Is DIO a military organisation?
- DIO is an integrated civilian-military organisation. This means that there are members of the Australian Defence Force and civilian employees of the Department of Defence that work together to deliver DIO intelligence services. This provides opportunities for personnel to work, learn and develop within a diverse employment environment.
- Can I tell people that I work in DIO?
- Yes. However, it is in your own interest to be discreet and limit the number of people who are aware of your employment within DIO, as well as your specific role or function.
- What can I tell people about my work?
- Due to the nature of the material and the context of work within DIO, employees are required to restrict any work-related discussions. This means that DIO employees need to limit their discussions about work with family and are not able to discuss their work or work issues with friends.
- Where is DIO located?
- DIO is located in the Australian Government Department of Defence office complex in the suburb of Russell in Canberra. Russell is a centrally-located suburb five minutes’ drive from the centre of Canberra.
- Do you have jobs in any other city or do I have to move to Canberra?
- No, all DIO staff are located in Canberra.
- Would you pay for me to move to Canberra?
- Yes. The branch that you will be working for pays for your flights, your furniture and your car to be moved to Canberra.
- What training do you offer?
- We offer a range of training courses, depending on what stream of work you are in. Examples include orientation courses, short and long courses on how the intelligence process works, presentation skills training and leadership courses.
- How much will I get paid?
- See Defence APS Careers for current salaries.
- How many people work in DIO?
- Approximately 350.
- Will I get deployed?
- There are some opportunities for civilian staff to be deployed overseas in support of ADF operations.
- What are my conditions of service?
- Your employment in DIO will be subject to the conditions of service outlined within the Defence Enterprise Collective Agreement.
- Do I have to be an Australian citizen to apply for a position within DIO?
- Yes. To be considered for engagement as either an ongoing or non-ongoing employee, you must hold Australian citizenship or be eligible for Australian citizenship and be actively pursuing citizenship and be eligible for consideration under existing Commonwealth government security guidelines. In addition to the above, you must have a checkable background and be willing to undertake an extensive security and background checking process covering the past 10 years or from your 16th birthday, whichever is greater.
- Do I require tertiary qualifications?
- Not necessarily. Selection for positions in DIO is made on the basis of merit. Work qualities that may be taken into account include relative abilities, qualifications, experience, standard of work performance, personal qualities and your potential for further development. Particular emphasis is placed on written and oral communication skills, sound conceptual and analytical skills, and good judgement.
- Do I need to speak foreign languages?
- No. The ability to speak foreign languages is not essential to your application.
- Can I send a résumé to express my interest in working in DIO?
- No. DIO does not accept unsolicited job applications. DIO does, however, run recruitment campaigns as well as advertising individual positions throughout the year. It is recommended that you regularly check Defence APS Careers for employment opportunities.
- Where are DIO's current employment opportunities located?
- DIO advertises its current employment opportunities on Defence APS Careers, APS Jobs, national press and occasionally through Seek. These sites provide useful information about applying for positions within the Australian Public Service and in particular the Department of Defence.
- I already have a security clearance for my current job. Will that make the selection process quicker for me?
- Not necessarily. Everyone applying for a position within DIO is required to go through the same recruitment process which includes an extensive security clearance process. The time required to complete this process may be reduced if an applicant has held a position requiring a security clearance in the past but this can depend on the type of clearance held, the agency for which the clearance was issued and how recently the clearance was issued or revalidated.
- Am I able to have feedback for my unsuccessful application?
- Yes. The selection committee can provide feedback on unsuccessful applications on request. This covers the applicant's performance in applications, interviews, assessment centres or any other assessment techniques used at that stage. Due to security considerations, DIO does not provide feedback on psychological assessments.