AFP logo at EBB Canberra

Police officer – national policing

Four police officers in a shooting range training environment pointing guns towards target on a wall


AFP National Operations investigates and prevents crime to keep Australia, and Australian interests overseas, safe.

We have 2 main national policing areas:

  • national investigation operations
  • airport policing.

Our investigative police officers:

  • prevent and disrupt crime
  • respond to emerging national and international issues
  • protect Australia from serious organised crime and terrorism.

Our airport policing officers:

  • prevent and investigate aviation crime
  • lead law enforcement at 9 major airports around Australia
  • provide firearms and explosives detection capabilities
  • act as first responders during terrorist attacks or other emergency incidents.

What you'll do

As a police officer in national policing, your day-to-day work will be challenging and rewarding, including:

  • interviewing witnesses and suspects
  • collecting, preparing and presenting evidence to the courts
  • working across teams, alongside people in the many different roles in the AFP
  • collaborating with other police forces, at home and abroad.

To learn more about life in the AFP, and get to know our people, read our people's stories.


Joining the AFP as a new recruit

To start your career as a police officer with us, you must:

  • be aged 18 years or over
  • be an Australian citizen
  • hold a valid Australian driver's licence (P plates are accepted, if you have a learners licence don't apply until you have your provisional licence)
  • meet our character standards
  • hold at least one of the following qualifications:
    • Year 10 Certificate and 2 years of work experience
    • Year 10 Certificate and a nationally recognised vocational education qualification at Certificate III level or higher
    • Year 12 Certificate
    • vocational education (TAFE) qualification or university qualification at Diploma level or higher.

You must also provide evidence that you:

  • have had 2 primary doses of an approved COVID-19 vaccine or one dose of the Janssen (Johnson & Johnson) vaccine at the time of application (evidence can be provided in the form of an immunisation history statement or COVID-19 Digital Certificate)
  • hold current first aid and CPR certifications
  • can swim 100 m freestyle.

Find out more about joining us as a police officer including salary and benefits

Joining the AFP from another Australian police force

If you have at least 3 years of operational policing experience and have not been out of a policing role for more than 5 years, you may be eligible to join us as a police officer through our Lateral Program.

You'll be expected to hold a Diploma of Public Safety (Policing) or equivalent and have strong experience in criminal investigation. We encourage state or territory officers to apply.

You must also:

  • be an Australian citizen
  • be up-to-date with COVID-19 vaccinations
  • be able to get and maintain a Negative Vetting 1 security clearance
  • hold current first aid and CPR certifications
  • show evidence that you can swim 100 m freestyle.

How to apply

We advertise vacancies on our Jobs portal.

Each position will outline the application process.

To see the current positions available, visit our Jobs portal.

We are facing an uncertain world and constant technological advancements, so to have a better chance at being in control of our own destiny, we must be unapologetically proactive and innovative in how we identify and disrupt threats.

Reece P Kershaw APM
AFP Commissioner