What does a policy officer do?
A policy officer contributes to the development and review of policies and provides information to internal and external stakeholders about policies and procedures. In developing policies they may do research, undertake surveys, coordinate feedback from others and be involved in other community engagement and consultative processes. They also prepare papers, reports, submissions, briefs as well as policy materials on behalf of their organisation.
- Develop, implement and review policies
- Collaborate with other staff and external stakeholders
- Write reports, briefs, submissions and other documents
- Provide policy advice to staff and stakeholders
- Assemble, interpret and analyse information
What skills do I need to be a policy officer?
A policy officer needs to be a detail-oriented person with strong skills in writing and spoken communication. They should have strong research and analytical skills, as well as the ability to think critically, solve problems, negotiate effectively and work with autonomy. Strong report writing skills are essential, as is the ability to work in an environment that can be political at times, with competing demands and objectives. Teamwork and customer service skills are also important.
- Excellent written and spoken communication skills
- Great organisation
- Attention to detail
- Negotiating skills
- Strong numeracy
Policy officers typically work in the public sector in local, state/territory and commonwealth government organisations, but can also be found in the not-for-profit sector as well as in large businesses.
Public sector policy officers
Not-for-profit sector policy officers
Private sector policy officers
Study pathways for policy officers
Many policy officers have general degrees like arts or science, but a qualification in political science or public policy and management can be advantageous.
An undergraduate degree in art, science, a particular specialisation, or political science or public policy.
Many public sector organisations have roles open to new graduates through comprehensive graduate programs with excellent training.
There are courses available to help policy officers refresh or hone skills in areas like government framework or report writing.
Policy officers in Australia are required to attain professional tertiary accreditation. Find out more about the professional requirements of the https://studyselect.com.au/business-administration-courses/ industry in the resources section.
Getting a job after graduation
Put your training to good use and get the best professional head start in your social work career. Take a look at our sample resume and cover letter and put your best foot forward when you apply for social work jobs.
Job Prospects and Salaries
The growth in work for policy officers has been average over the last five years, and is only expected to grow moderately in the near future.