Defence Office Manager and Research Officer

Australian Embassy
  • Location
    Brussels, Belgium
  • Sector
  • Experience
    Mid Career
  • Posted
    May 10

Position description

The successful applicant will be engaged as a locally engaged staff member by The Australian Embassy, Brussels. 

Please be advised that the Australian Embassy, Brussels does not provide relocation assistance and any costs. 

About the Department of Defence 

Defence's primary role is to defend Australia and its national interests, promote security and stability and support the Australian community as directed by the Government.

About the Position

The Office Manager and Research Officer position is responsible for the efficient and effective running of the Defence Office at the Australian Embassy in Brussels. The position provides Office Management and Research support to the Defence Office, to support their engagement with NATO and EU Military Committee working groups; Belgium and Netherlands Defence organisations; and Government, and industry organisations on matters relating to the defence relationship.

The key responsibilities of the position include, but are not limited to:

•  Provide complex technical advice, research support and leadership to the Defence section, including the coordination of all business administrative management, property leases, development and implementation of work plans in accordance with Defence specific policies and procedures.

•  Manage the Defence Office assets and finances including forecasting, procurement, monitoring and reporting on expenditure, identifying savings opportunities, and preparing financial reports and bids, ensuring risks and fraud are mitigated and compliance with legislative and policy requirements.

•  Perform complex research and provide accurate and specialised advice to Defence Section staff on matters relating to Australian Defence interests in NATO and the EU, and Australian Defence engagement with Belgium and the Netherlands, by collecting, monitoring, analysing and evaluating information, papers and related materials. Subject areas include defence capability advancements, defence policy developments, defence industry developments, historic military commemorations across Belgium and the Netherlands, and engagement between European nations and the Australian Defence Force.

•  Develop, implement, review and ensure compliance with corporate policies and practices, including contributing to internal strategic planning for Defence long-term initiatives. 

•  In consultation with the Defence Attaché, supervise and manage performance of other Locally Engaged office staff working within the Defence section. Manage two locally employed staff, including allocating resources, setting priorities, identifying training needs, monitoring workflow and managing performance to achieve objectives.

•   Plan and coordinate the logistics of ministerial/high-level visits and other events including official travel, movement requisitions, transport and accommodation booking arrangements and itineraries.

•  Manage the diplomatic flight clearance requests and amendments for Defence.

•  Coordination of routine information exchange process with NATO, EU, Belgian and Dutch agencies, including primary management of the information systems and document requests to NATO by external (Australian) agencies. Maintain the Defence classified document register.

•  Represent and promote the interests of the Australian Mission at a range of forums, events and meetings and provide advice on Australian participation, operational and policy issues.

•  Research issues and compile information using a variety of media, present findings/data in a report or verbally as directed. Appraise/analyse information and produce relevant reports or summaries and attend conferences/meetings as directed and write up summary reports.

•  Establish, develop and maintain strong working relationships with a range of key internal and external stakeholders, local authorities and partner agencies to further Defence interests.


  • Demonstrated experience in office and personnel management, including experience in financial management, preferably in an international or government organisation.
  • High level analytical skills and subject matter expertise in relation to government policy, preferably in Defence or international relations / foreign affairs.
  • Demonstrated ability to set priorities, show exceptional judgement, manage competing tasks and organise workloads to achieve outcomes and meet deadlines.
  • Demonstrated ability to manage and lead a team and work with minimum supervision and maintain confidentiality.
  • Demonstrated ability to develop professional stakeholder relationships at a working level – applying tact and diplomacy where necessary.
  • Written and oral language skills in English to a clear and professional standard, with the ability to draft high level correspondence.
  • A high level of personal drive and integrity and the ability to work flexibly and adapt to changing requirements.
  • Demonstrated experience with Australian Government standards and procedures, policies, and guidelines
  • High level computer skills in a range of software (particularly Microsoft office suite). 
  • Functional level spoken and written French or Dutch is preferred.

Security Requirements

  •  Australian NV1 security clearance or ability to gain the same. Therefore, applicants must hold citizenship of Australia, New Zealand, USA, UK or Canada to be considered.
  • Please note that candidates who hold citizenship or dual citizenship of Belgian are not eligible for an Australian Security Clearance.

Selection Criteria

In your written statements, you must include relevant high-level examples from your experience that support your claims against the role. The word limit is strictly 250 words per response. The panel will not assess responses which exceed the word limit.

A. Highly developed communication and interpersonal skills with a proven ability to respond to the needs of clients, and to manage relationships at all levels leveraging them to the benefit of the organisation, including high-level internal and external stakeholders.

B. Demonstrated ability to independently conduct high quality, thorough and accurate research, from a variety of sources, analyse findings to monitor trends, and present findings/reports to a diverse range of internal and external stakeholders in an appropriate manner.

C. Demonstrated knowledge of Australian Government policies and processes.

D. Demonstrated initiative and organisational skills, and an ability to lead a small team managing competing priorities to achieve required corporate outcomes with limited supervision.

E. Proficiency with Microsoft Office suite. High level of IT literacy with ability to manage the electronic documents and records management system, ensuring on-going compliance with policy guidelines and confidentiality. 

Application instructions

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