View Vacancy - AUS (Sydney) - Pro Consul, A2 (L) (Full-Time)
Main purpose of job:
The British Consulate-General in Sydney is part of a global network providing a wide range of consular assistance and services to British people in Australia, in line with the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office’s (FCDO) published Consular Guidance and Customer Charter, Consular Services Strategy, local procedures, guidance and performance standards.
Consular Officers have the opportunity to make a direct difference to people’s lives in challenging circumstances. The job includes dealing with sensitive cases and responding to crises and stressful events. The successful candidate will be working in a fast-paced and complex environment where the ability to work under pressure and with difficult subject matter is vital.
As a member of the Consular Team in Sydney, you will provide excellent consular services to British nationals visiting or residing throughout New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory. You will also be expected to support the Sydney-based Consular Manager (PNG, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu) to deliver remote consular assistance in the Pacific Islands. Casework in the Pacific Islands is often complex in nature due to the differences in local context compared to Australia.
This role reports directly to the Consular Manager NSW/ACT.
Roles and responsibilities / what will the jobholder be expected to achieve?:
- Sensitively deliver accurate advice, information and case management to British nationals and their families (mostly remotely via telephone or email) on a range of issues such as; imprisonment and detention; financial hardship and destitution; hospitalisations; supporting bereaved families; missing persons; mental health needs; child custody and other sensitive issues. Case management will be supported by the Consular Manager NSW/ACT.
- Provide occasional face-to-face support, including visiting British nationals in prison, immigration detention facilities, hospitals
- Provide remote consular assistance to customers in the Pacific Islands, under the direction of the Sydney-based Consular Manager (PNG, Solomon Islands and Vanuatu)
- Respond to customer correspondence in a timely and efficient manner
- Liaise productively with internal teams, including colleagues and senior leaders in Australia and the FCDO overseas network, as well as London-based consular casework teams
- Build and maintain relationships with local authorities, including state and federal government agencies and non-government organisations to support case management
- Participate in mission-wide crisis preparation and response duties in the event of a crisis affecting a significant number of British nationals, including crisis events in the Pacific Islands
- Maintain accurate and concise case records on consular databases
- Organise and deliver citizenship ceremonies
- Maintain consular reception/public notices to a high standard
- General cash handling/receipt for paid services
- Other administrative and transactional duties as required, including printing Emergency Travel Documents and the conversion of civil partnerships.
Prevention and Outreach
- Participate in team planning and execution of consular prevention campaigns, aimed at reducing preventable incidents and reducing case complexity
- Monitor changes in local procedures and practices, ensuring that all information and guidance given to British nationals reflects changes and is up to date, e.g. service provider lists, travel advice, web pages.
- Liaise with state and federal authorities, members of the public and liaise closely with internal departments and Partners Across Government, including in other Posts in Australia and across APAC
The formal job description may be subject to amendment in the future.
Essential on arrival:
- Strong customer service delivery, including sound expectation management skills
- Strong written and verbal communication skills
- Strong organisational skills, including taking responsibility for work and working with energy and pace
- Ability to work in small teams, and as part of a larger virtual networkSelf-aware; positive and resilient approach to change
- Confident user of Microsoft Office software
- A high degree of personal resilience and flexibility, including working unsocial hours in an emergency.
Level of language required: Fluent written and spoken English
- Experience working with vulnerable client groups
- Good understanding of local systems and support organisations
Specific Considerations for Consular Roles:
Consular work can sometimes be stressful, distressing and of a sensitive nature. The successful applicant will therefore be expected to demonstrate high levels of personal resilience and maintain absolute consular confidentiality and impartiality, keeping in line with the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) Consular Strategy, consular guidance and Customer Charter, business targets and local procedures
Learning and development opportunities (and any specific training courses to be completed):
The British Consulate General, Sydney encourages all staff to develop their skills and capabilities through formal training (courses) and informal (job shadowing, coaching, on the job training). The majority of our formal opportunities are delivered through FCDO resources.
Mandatory core consular training that must be completed successfully:
- Consular mandatory training courses (e-learning)
- Essential Consular Work (ECW) Course
- Mandatory crisis training
There are additional opportunities to expand/maintain professional skills/knowledge base through informal sessions (coaching, mentoring and workshops).
This is a great role, which provides an excellent variety of consular work, allowing the successful incumbent to gain experience in assistance, crisis, outreach work. You will need to be an effective communicator and able to multitask under pressure.
At times, this role will need to complete some work without direct supervision. It is therefore important that you are a self-starter and can act on your own initiative, keeping senior stakeholders informed and engaged.
The role will also contribute to and support delivery of casework in some Pacific posts.
It will be important to be flexible and resilient. There are over 250,000 British nationals living in NSW, and many more regularly visit each year, meaning there is a steady demand for a wide range of consular assistance and services. Cases can often be complex and challenging, calling for sensitive and considered handling.
Building and maintaining good relations with local authorities (in particular the Australian Border Force and Corrective Services NSW) and with colleagues at post is critical.
The role will also contribute to and support delivery of casework in the Pacific region.
Working at the Sydney Consulate-General
The British Consulate General Sydney represents the UK government providing consular services to British nationals in New South Wales and the Australian Capital Territory. In addition to consular work, policy, political and trade and investment activities are undertaken from this location.
Due to the security clearance level required for this position, this vacancy is only open to Australian, American, British, Canadian and New Zealand citizens and must have the right to work in Australia.
Appointment is subject to an AFP records check and UK security clearance.
Employees who are not liable to pay local income tax on their Mission salary may have their salaries reduced by the equivalent local income tax amount
Staff recruited locally by the British Consulate-General and its Consulates is subject to Terms and Conditions of Service according to local Australian employment law.
The British Government supports flexible working practices. Interstate applicants will be required to meet their own travel and relocation expenses.
This role is suitable for some flexible working patterns, subject to operational demands.
The role must be based in the Consulate-General in Sydney.
Some travel may be required for regional activities, such as prison visits, providing resilience to other teams, and for training purposes. This may include interstate and/or overseas.
Consulate core hours are 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.
Due to the unplanned nature of some consular work, a flexible approach to working hours and patterns is essential.
Please note that we currently have 2 vacancies for Pro Consul – Sydney. One at 38 hours per week and the other at 30.4 per week. If you are interested in either opportunity please submit an application for both.
Your application must be submitted before 23:55 AEST-Australian Eastern Standard Time (UTC/ GMT +10) on the day mentioned in the above field “Application deadline”
Applications must include a current CV.
Incomplete application forms will not be taken into consideration, so please ensure you provide the information requested. We regret to advise that we will only be contacting short-listed candidates. Applicants called for an interview will be assessed on the core competencies listed above.
Advertised start date is provisional and subject to completion of reference and security checks.
Kindly check your application centre or email regularly for any update on the status of your application.
This opportunity is closed to applications.