The Victorian water industry secondment program builds organisational capability by connecting staff with work opportunities in other organisations exposing them to new ideas and knowledge, alternative leadership styles and diverse approaches to challenges and implementations.


Job Overview

Department: Department of Energy, Environment and Climate Action
Work Type: Fixed term – flexible
Job Function: Policy
Classification: VPSG5
Work Location: Level 12, 8 Nicholson Street, East Melbourne/hybrid location
Reference: VG/50943727MAY
Closing Date: 05-May-2024
Salary Range: $105,479 – $127,621
Job Duration: Period of 9 months

Direct Reports: 2
Contact: Dawn Hartog 0436 607 258

Position Details

An opportunity exists within the Sector Resilience and Emergency Branch within DEECA’s Water and Catchments Group for a Senior Policy Officer looking to apply their knowledge and experience of emergency management and legislative requirements, in a government setting. This nine-month secondment provides an opportunity to apply your sector knowledge to inform outcomes for the water sector, DEECA and the Victorian communities.

Position purpose

The Senior Policy Officer – Mitigation and Preparedness supports the emergency mitigation, planning, preparedness and response program for major complex and interrelated incidents, including bushfires, floods, storm events and other hazards to mitigate risks to the water sector.

The position leads the planning, implementation and ongoing review of major incident related preparedness and response for the water sector. The Senior Policy Officer initiates and maintains strong partnerships and works collaboratively across the Department of Energy, Environment and Climate Action (DEECA) and the water sector within an all-hazards emergency management landscape. The position also includes broader involvement in water industry emergency management events and exercises.

The Senior Policy Officer has extensive experience working within an emergency management environment and knowledge of the Victorian water sector is advantageous.


  • Lead and contribute to a variety of tasks associated with the development, implementation and continuous improvement of the state’s response to major incidents impacting the water sector.
  • Develop DEECA’s major incident preparedness and response program including protocols, procedures and reporting in the event of an incident including bushfires, floods, storm events and other hazards to mitigate risks to the water sector.
  • Initiate, maintain and manage effective working relationships with key external stakeholders to gain cooperation and influence views on complex matters to support government and DEECA priorities.
  • Provide authoritative and timely advice on major complex incidents and risks impacting the water sector.
  • Prepare timely and high-quality briefings, correspondence, and reports, with supporting documentation on complex and sensitive matters related to major emergencies.
  • Provide advice and assistance to DEECA regions and local government on responding to major incidents.
  • Contribute to the implementation of high-level recommendations of recent reviews to improve Victoria’s water emergency response.
  • Provide advice to inform, shape and to manage the implementation of water emergency management actions from parliamentary enquiries, audits, government strategies and plans.
  • Lead continuous and progressive improvement in emergency management policy, strategy and systems across prevention, preparedness, response, recovery, including safety and wellbeing.
  • Participate in and observe emergency management exercises with water corporations and other stakeholders.
  • Support the roles of the State Duty Officer – Water and Water Services Specialist including training development for DEECA water emergency management roles.
  • Practice cultural safety by creating environments, relationships and systems free from racism and discrimination so that people can feel safe, valued and able to participate.

Key Selection Criteria

The key selection criteria specified below outline the capabilities required for the position.

Specialist/Technical Expertise:

  • An appropriate tertiary qualification or experience in science, engineering, law, economics, public policy or natural resource management, or similar.
  • A sound working knowledge of Victoria’s emergency management arrangements would be desirable.
  • A current Victorian Driver’s Licence would be desirable.


Critical Thinking and Problem Solving

  • Resolves issues through deep understanding or interpretation of existing guidelines
  • Where guidelines are not available, analyses ideas available and takes action through self, or in consultation with others to resolve problems
  • If required, determine additional information needed to make informed decisions
  • Applies critical thinking and problem-solving concepts in the right context

Customer Focus

  • Looks for continuous improvement opportunities and ways to innovate
  • Identifies and responds to customer requirements
  • Use understanding of the customers’ context to tailor services and ensure outcomes are delivered
  • Effectively manages risks to service delivery

Political and Organisational Context

  • Understands issues and pressures to which the organisation has to respond
  • Understands the reasons behind the organisational climate and culture
  • Uses formal & informal influencing relationships & decision-making processes
  • Ensure solutions or actions adhere to values, ethics, responsibilities, legal obligations and limits that apply to an organisation
  • Considers priorities and interests of various groups & key individuals

Stakeholder Management

  • Takes steps to add value for the client or stakeholder
  • Links people with other areas as appropriate
  • Monitors client and stakeholder satisfaction
  • Constructively deals with stakeholder issues

This is a fixed term position available for a period of 9 months. The work location for this position is flexible within Victoria with hybrid work arrangements available.

To be considered for this position, applicants are encouraged to submit a resume and cover letter (no longer than 2 pages) summarising their skills and relevant experience.

For further information please request position description or enquire with Dawn Hartog, Senior Manager, Water Emergency Management

Applications close at midnight on Sunday, 5 May 2024.

Other relevant information:

For this particular vacancy, priority consideration applies to Victorian Public Service (VPS) and select employees of the Victorian Public Sector who apply through the Jobs and Skills Exchange (JSE) jobs board platform.

Preferred candidates will be required to undertake pre-employment screening, including a Declaration and Consent form and a National Police Check.

To be eligible for appointment to this role, applicants will possess corresponding work rights for the advertised employment period. Appointment to an ongoing position is only available to an Australian/New Zealand citizen or an Australian Permanent Resident.

A Diverse, Inclusive and Flexible Workplace

DEECA welcomes applicants from a diverse range of backgrounds and we focus on the essential requirements of the job and being consistent and fair in our treatment of all applicants. We also understand that a balanced life is important to our employees. Talk to us about our flexible options such as working some days from home, starting early or late, working part time, job sharing or accessing paid or unpaid leave.

Here is the direct link to Careers@Vic. Senior Policy Officer, Mitigation and Preparedness | Melbourne – CBD | Vacancies –



A secondment is a chance to temporarily work in a different organisation.
It can also regenerate employees who have started to feel they have plateaued in their current role and looking for a springboard into the next phase of their career.

The Victorian water industry secondment program offers the ability to develop further skills and knowledge through matching individual interest with work opportunities across water corporations, and catchment management authorities. The program directly builds the capability of the sector as a whole.

A secondment can offer a more intensive learning experience than classroom or online courses, and you get to put your new knowledge to use immediately and continuously. There are no theory or hypotheticals here, this is real and hands-on.

Hosting organisations experience the benefit of new skills, experience and perspective being applied.

Secondments pay dividends in terms of employee engagement as well. After all, what’s more engaging than a chance to develop new skills without the hassle of going to night school?

Want to advertise a secondment opportunity?

Listings are free of charge for VicWater Members
Contact us at

Secondment programs build organisational capability by connecting staff and exposing them to new ideas, alternative leadership styles, and diverse approaches.
It’s an opportunity to learn further skills and knowledge they can use when they return to their regular role.

Secondments are also a great tool for employee retention. If a highly valued team member becomes restless in their role, sending them to another department for a quarter or two gives them a chance to stretch their legs without walking out the door.

VicWater is excited to support the Victorian water industry secondment program, which will help participants improve their skills and invigorate their careers and in doing so, build the capability of the sector as a whole.

Secondments are a great opportunity for people to experience a new functional area in a fast and furious way.

In an era of increasingly specialised skillsets and tough competition for the most talented workers, secondments are a win for both water sector employees and employers.


A secondment is the opportunity to work temporarily in a different firm or department to the one you are already working in. In an internal secondment, the employee moves to a different part of the same organisation. In an external secondment, the employee temporarily works at a different organisation.

Secondment programs build organisational leadership and positive cultural change by connecting staff and exposing them to new ideas, alternative leadership styles, and diverse approaches. It’s an opportunity to learn valuable skills and training on the job, they can use when they return to their regular role.

Length of secondment depends on individual circumstances, but it can range from less than 100 hours on a part-time basis, to up to two years full-time. Depending on organisational policies, opportunities may be open to all or restricted to managers, technical or professional staff.

Generally, your employer who is letting you go on secondment is the one that will continue to pay your wages. There may also be additional consideration in regards to bonuses, expenses, overtime and training costs.

Secondees can learn additional skills, benefit from new experiences and of course it’s a tremendous networking opportunity.

The secondment may be terminated at any time by mutual agreement of the Employing Organisation and the Host Organisation. Alternatively, the Employing Organisation or Host Organisation may terminate the secondment by giving the other party at least two weeks’ written notice.

A secondment does not terminate an employee’s contract of employment; the contract continues to subsist during the period of secondment, and a key principle of the arrangement is that the employee is expected to return to his or her substantive post when the secondment ends.

Below are examples of secondment agreements. If you would like more information please contact us.

Want to advertise a secondment opportunity?

Listings are free of charge for VicWater Members
Contact us at

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