Michael - Protective Service Officer

How many years have you worked as a PSO?

I am currently about to come up to my one year anniversary.

Why did you first apply to become a PSO?

I previously worked with a friend who has been working as a PSO for over 10 years.

Talk us through an average day on shift?

I have worked both within Diplomatic Protection Unit (Canberra) and Official Establishments NSW. These have both had diverse roles and responsibilities which include vehicle patrols, diplomatic protection, static security, uniformed response, rapid response, high dignitary association, and liaison with other agencies.

What are some of the highlights about the job?

Some highlights within the role would be the opportunity for every day to be different and to respond to multiple events with multiple outcomes. The job role varies day to day.

What are some of the challenges about the job?

Some challenges regarding a role as a PSO could be the times where the job gets a bit slow and repetitive. The emphasis would then be on the PSO to carry out extra training which would be beneficial to future roles or advancement.

Why should more women join the AFP?

The AFP is a diverse organisation and has many roles that females would normally not think to apply or possibly be concerned about joining. The AFP can and is currently benefiting from gaining a diverse culture in all roles.

Coming up on your one year anniversary with the AFP, what has really surprised you about the job?

I would have to say that the job has many benefits that have surprised me. The work/life balance has been refreshing after coming out of the military. I have had time to catch up with friends and family as well as start things that wouldn't be possible with other jobs.

Favourite part of the Recruit course?

The recruit course was generally quite fun. It had days where you were worried about an exam or passing a scenario but looking back it was only because these are all new experiences. The whole course was enjoyable but the one thing that I took out of it would be the friends and networks that have been established.

What were some of the challenges of the Recruit course?

The recruit course is set out in a way that there are very few challenges to be concerned about. There will always be days where an upcoming test or event may get you nervous but the course is structured and constantly builds on previous knowledge.

What are your future goals within the AFP?

My future goal within the AFP is to use my time to study as well as learn as much as I can. I would like to take part in every available opportunity to build my portfolio and see where this can lead me in my future within the AFP.

What is one piece of advice that you would offer a potential new recruit?

I have had some friends that I have worked with that have tried out for a PSO role and not been successful. The best piece of advice I could offer would be to familiarise yourself with all aspects of the recruiting process to be a more competitive candidate. I would also recommend talking to someone within the role and having a definitive career plan.

National Security Hotline

Read the AFP Annual Report 2018-19

The Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation

Platypus Online: Read. Discover. Enjoy.