Information on finding a job in Australia as an international student

Find out where to look for jobs, how to apply successfully and where to go for more support and information on paying taxes*.

Written by Editor Medibank

Many international students find employment while they are studying in Australia. 

Generally, there is more demand for workers with previous experience or specialised skills. If you have been employed before or completed an undergraduate degree in another country, it’s important to tell your prospective employer.

Your visa will also have conditions attached, for example, the number of hours you are entitled to work, and sometimes even the type of work you can undertake. Ensure you are familiar with your visa conditions and inform prospective employers of any relevant limitations. 

How to list your skills and experience

Many employers in Australia ask each applicant to submit a CV (also known as a resumé) via email or a website. Make sure your CV includes the following:

  • Information about the visa you hold and your right to work in Australia;
  • Information about your current course of study and any previous qualifications;
  • Details of any previous employment; and
  • Details of any useful skills you have acquired during work or study.

You can also create a profile on LinkedIn, a social network that helps employers and workers find each other. Some employers prefer to receive a link to your LinkedIn profile instead of a CV.

LinkedIn is popular with employers in skilled industries such as IT and finance but is rarely used by employers looking for staff without special skills (e.g., cafes and supermarkets).

Where to look for job ads

There are several popular websites where you can do a job search. The largest is SEEK, which is used by employers in all industries. You can also visit Job Search, the Australian government's job website.

Alternatively, visit Ethical Jobs to find paid employment in the not-for-profit and community-care sectors. LinkedIn has job listings, too, but you must have a profile to browse them.

Australian Internships can help you find a paid or unpaid internship, but it charges a fee. Internships are also listed on SEEK, and many Australian employers advertise internships on their own websites. Your university may also have information about upcoming internships.

An internship can help you secure a permanent job while you study or after you finish.

If you're a Medibank OSHC member, you have exclusive access to Medibank Student Rewards Plus+. We understand that navigating a new country and finding work can be overwhelming. With Student Rewards Plus, you can search for casual, part-time, and full-time job opportunities near you. You can also access advice in building your resume and preparing for interviews, giving you a great start to life in Australia.

How to prepare for a job interview

The Australian job market is competitive, but there are several ways to improve your chances of being hired.

  • Before your interview, spend time with other international students and graduates who are working in similar roles. They can provide advice and encouragement
  • Take the interview seriously. Australians are friendly and casual in their daily lives, but in work contexts such as job interviews, many employers will expect you to dress and behave formally
  • Research the job on offer – find out as much as you can online to ensure you're as prepared as possible
  • If you haven't interviewed for jobs before, ask a friend to role-play the interview situation to help you feel more confident about the process
  • Don't be afraid to apply for more than one job simultaneously: in Australia, this is common practice and will not disadvantage you.

Useful information relating to tax

  • The best place to go for information relating to tax, such as Tax File Numbers and how to apply for one, is the ATO (Australian Taxation Office)
  • The ATO is also a great source of information if you want to learn more about tax returns.

Remember to also talk to your university or education provider as they will often have resources available to help you with career coaching and improving your interview skills as well as information to help you navigate through tax and superannuation.

*    This resource is intended to provide general information and a list of external resources to international students. While we’ve prepared the information carefully, we can’t guarantee it’s accurate, complete, or up to date.  And while we may mention services provided by others, we aren’t specifically endorsing them and can’t accept responsibility for them. This information is not intended to constitute tax or superannuation advice. Please seek tax or superannuation advice if necessary.

+    For Medibank OSHC members only. T&Cs apply. Access the Medibank OSHC app to find out more.


Written by Editor Medibank

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