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Finding Office (Secretary & Admin) Jobs in Australia

If you are travelling in Australia and you have experience or prefer working in an office, signing up for a temping agency (an agency that manages a team of temporary staff that fill positions in other companies) can be a great way to find administrative, secretarial, and general office jobs that suit your schedule and visa.

female secretary taking notes while on phone with the text Secretary and Admin Jobs in Australia for Backpackers

While you can also apply for office job vacancies directly via postings on job sites, you will often find more opportunities with a temping agency as many big companies choose to use these agencies when filling gaps of less than six months. They have vacancies that last a couple of days, a couple of weeks, or a couple of months.

With all that in mind, below I will take you through finding an office job in Australia. I’ll start with what to expect from an office job, such as the standard hours and predominant office culture. I’ll then look at the type of office jobs that are common in Australia and the average salary. Finally, I’ll share where to find jobs, looking particularly at what it is like to work with a temping agency.

It is worth noting that temping agencies aren’t just for office jobs, Many Australian industries take advantage of the services of temping agencies.

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Working in an Australian Office

Office jobs in Australia are hugely diverse as the experience depends on the industry, company culture, size, and structure of the office team. But you can expect most full-time office jobs to be during the standard working week, which is Monday to Friday, 8.30 am – 5.30 pm with a one-hour lunch break. However, statistics suggest that around 34% of office jobs in Australia are part-time.

Many office jobs are located in the central business districts (CBD) of major cities such as Sydney, Melbourne, and Brisbane. But since most businesses require office staff, you could find yourself anywhere. Recent statistics suggest that around 30% of Australian office jobs are regional, which means that they are outside the state capitals.

Despite Australia being known for its relaxed culture and aversion to shoes, the dress code for most offices in Australia tends to be fairly smart. You will be expected to dress appropriately for the office.

Different Types of Office Jobs Available in Australia

There are a huge number of roles that fall under the “office job” umbrella from receptionist to administrator to data entry clerk. Most jobs don’t require any specific qualifications. In most cases, job descriptions will want at least a high school certificate, with an undergraduate degree in any subject or vocational training considered desirable.

Other than that, most recruiters will be looking for specific skills and experience, which can be demonstrated through education, previous work experience, and even general life experience. Expect to see recruiters looking for:

Many roles are likely to include tasks such as monitoring and responding to emails, diary management, minute-taking, preparing documents, filing, managing data, making travel arrangements, copying and filing, and other industry-specific tasks.

Here’s a look at some of the most common office jobs I see around Australia and their average salary.

Role Average Full-Time Salary in AUD
General Clerk $58,425 ($29.96 per hour)
Receptionist $60,855 ($31.21 per hour)
Secretary $75,428 ($38.68 per hour)
Executive Assistant $87,805 ($45.03 per hour)
Administrator $78,228 ($40.12 per hour)
Office Manager $88,215 ($45.25 per hour)
Accounting Clerk $75,000 ($38.46 per hour)
Data Entry Clerk $62,990 ($32.21 per hour)
Legal Secretary $77,500 ($39.74 per hour)
Medical Secretary $66,828 ($34.27 per hour)

Finding an Office Job in Australia

If you are looking for secretarial jobs, admin jobs, or general office jobs in Australia, you will find many vacancies advertised on the main job seeker websites, including part-time and temporary opportunities. The biggest job seeker websites here in Australia include SEEK, Indeed, and Talent.

But if you are travelling through Australia and you are looking for temporary and short-term opportunities, you may be better off registering with a temping agency.

Working for a Temping Agency in Australia

Temping agencies, that provide temporary workers to other businesses, are very common here in Australia. Many large companies contact temping agencies to fill positions when permanent staff are unavailable. This could be maternity cover, sick leave, long service leave, or anything else. They might also bring on temporary staff to fill gaps when recruiting or just to lighten the load of other workers during busy periods.

According to a recent survey, Australia employs the second-highest percentage of temporary workers in the world, at around 2.8% of the total workforce.

You can sign up as a member of a temping agency that is active where you are living. If you have an interest in a specific industry, you can find temping agencies that specialize in that field. Many big agencies work nationally, so when you move, you can move your registration to a new office and they will have your experience and details.

To sign up, you will need to fill out an online application form. This will request your personal details, work experience, probably including a CV, and ask what kind of work you are looking for in terms of location, hours, duration, and industries. You will also be asked to come in for a screening interview before you get started.

female working admin job in Australia backpacking travel company

Once you are on board, the temping agencies will match you with vacancies at the companies that work with them as they become available. You won’t need to interview for the individual jobs, but will be given the details such as job description, work location, hours, dress code, and other expectations by the agency.The company that you are temping at pays the temping agency for filling the role, and the temping agency pays you. The temping agency is responsible for things such as tax deductions and social security contributions. 

This probably means that you will get paid less than if you were employed directly by the company, as the agency needs to make its cut. Many agencies will offer a flat rate for general office temps, usually between $25-$30 per hour. But if you are more experienced and given more demanding roles, you can expect to be paid more. There is a trade-off between income and flexibility.

You could be in a temporary job for anything from just a few days to several months. You should be told the length of the contract before you start working so that you can ensure it works for you. If you are filling a vacancy that is being recruited for and the host company is happy with your work, it is not uncommon for them to invite you to interview.

List of Major Australian Temping Agencies

If you are looking for temping agencies in a specific area or that specialize in a certain field, you should do some online research to find niche agencies. But if you are looking for general office work, these are some of the biggest temping and recruitment agencies in Australia.

If you are part of a community of people visiting Australia on a working holiday visa, you can also ask them for recommendations.


Whether an admin assistant or secretary position is higher or better paid depends on the structure of the company. In general, a secretary works for a specific person, such as a manager or a director, while an admin assistant provides similar services for a team or department.

For an entry level administrative assistant role, you can probably expect to be paid between $24-$30 an hour at a minimum, and more if you have significant responsibility or experience. As a business or executive assistant, your salary can easily reach above $80,000 per year.

There is no limit on the time that you can work when in Australia on a working holiday visa, and you can take on full-time, part-time, or casual roles. However, you cannot work for the same employer in the same location for more than six months.

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