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Work Life Balance

At Defence, we care about your health and happiness. We offer a range of flexible working options to assist you with balancing your work commitments with your family, fitness, studies and lifestyle.

Part-time and Job Sharing

Defence offers the option of working part-time hours should an employee wish to work less than the ordinary weekly hours of 37.5 hours. This includes the ability to negotiate a job share work arrangement with another employee where the two employees are employed on a part-time basis and combine to perform a job normally filled by one person working full-time.


In Defence APS Level 1-6 employees can access flexible work hours (known as flextime) between 7am to 7pm Monday to Friday. Under flextime arrangements employees have the ability to accumulate additional hours (above the standard 7.5 hour working day) which can be exchanged for time off. Other flexible work arrangements include:

  • Negotiated time off in lieu for executive level employees;
  • A local working arrangement to vary the standard working hours (between 7am to 7pm); or
  • A compressed work schedule to work fulltime but using less than five working days (for example; working 75 hours over a nine day fortnight instead of 10 days).

Home-based Work

Our employees have the option to negotiate a flexible arrangement with their managers to work some hours from home and enable them to manage the competing demands of work and personal responsibilities.

Generous leave provisions

Defence provides employees access to a range of leave to support them through the changing stages of their lives and careers including:

  • Annual (recreational) leave (20 days/4 weeks per year) with the opportunity to purchase additional leave;
  • Personal/carers leave (15 days/3 weeks per year);
  • Maternity leave/adoption or fostering leave (up to 14 weeks paid);
  • Parental leave (up to 4 weeks paid);
  • An additional day of leave per calendar year in addition to regular leave;
  • Christmas stand down (a paid break during the Christmas and New Year period to spend time with family and friends in addition to regular leave;
  • 3 months long service leave for employees with over 10 years of eligible Government Service, with an additional 9 calendar days of long service leave accrued each year after the initial 10 years; and
  • 5 weeks paid reserve leave per financial year, for the purpose of fulfilling service obligations in the Australian Defence Force Reserves.

Want to see how flexible work arrangements really work? Read a first-hand account from one of our employees here:



Nicole was worried that her career as a workforce research analyst would be impacted by her husband's military career, but the support she received from Defence meant she could continue doing what she loved.

'The main challenge I have faced in my working life has been juggling my career aspirations and the requirements of my husband's military career for us to move on posting.'

'Defence has been extremely supportive of my career.'

'It has afforded me flexible working arrangements including working from home or a Defence workplace remote from my Canberra based job,'

'This has allowed me to accompany my husband on postings away from Canberra when I otherwise would have had to resign from my job.'

'I am really grateful to Defence for providing me these opportunities and supporting me with the flexibility I need to successfully balance my work and home life'

'I would definitely recommend a Defence APS career.'