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Services Australia

  • 1,000 - 50,000 employees

Heidi

Being able to write a concise, informative report, filled with intelligence I’ve sourced myself, is a great achievement and a very cool part of my job.

What's your job about?

My team provides tactical intelligence to counteract fraud being committed against the Commonwealth.

As an analyst, I use analytical thinking and tools to gather intelligence, and then write Tactical Intelligence Reports. These reports are sent to investigators in order to pursue cases.   

What's your background?

I grew up on the south side of Brisbane, in the areas of Woodridge and Kingston. I later moved to Capalaba when I met my husband.      

Returning to study in my late 30s was a pivotal point in my life. I grew up in low socioeconomic circumstances, which forced me to leave school at 13 to enter the workforce. The decision to return to study was something I had often thought about doing, and starting the journey took a bit of courage. However, I put myself to the test and came through OK, and it feels amazing. Now I am hooked. I want to commence further studies in the future. 

Could someone with a different background do your job?

This area is an interesting one. Most people you talk to find the idea of it exciting in some ways. However, it’s hard to say ‘yes’ and not consider the fact that, in this area of work, you are targeting people doing the wrong thing with Commonwealth funds. Ultimately, you may possibly assist in prosecuting them. Morally, that is something some may find an issue. So, yes if you have the aptitude for the work; no if you don’t like the idea of pursuing people committing fraud.              
Working without bias is important as an analyst, as bias can keep you from separating what you think is the situation, from what the situation actually is. Critical thinking and analysis are a commitment. You have to work hard to apply the correct tools and ensure you are building strong analytical skills to become an effective analyst.

What's the coolest thing about your job?

My team is a great reason to come to work, so I am very lucky to have them. However, I think the best part of my job is writing reports. I really like writing. Being able to write a concise, informative report, filled with intelligence I’ve sourced myself, is a great achievement and a very cool part of my job.

What are 3 pieces of advice you would give yourself when you were a student?

It seems scary now, but a completely new world is opening up to you and by the end of this, you will be in command. So:  

  • Don’t be afraid of referencing, it’s so easy when you have done it a few times.
  • Remember to stand up every 30 minutes at least. (I sat for almost 10 hours once and my feet were numb and itchy for 24 hours after – rookie mistake).
  • Take time to be with family – you can ask for an extension if needed.

What's the best thing about the National Graduate Program?

I always felt so inspired by how valued I felt as a grad by those we encountered. In addition, I was surprised by the number of opportunities the program offered (for example, the Indigenous and Multicultural Placement). I would say that this program is a chance of a lifetime. Go into it with excitement and enjoy it as it’s over too fast.

What advice would you give current university students interested in applying for the National Graduate Program?

There are a few hurdles to jump, but in the end it will be worth it.