How We Recruit

Recruitment Process

Taronga is committed to attracting, developing and retaining highly-qualified employees.
Operating seven days a week, we have a variety of career opportunities, including positions in animal care and management, education, facilities maintenance, horticulture, guest services, information technology, marketing, retail sales, security and more.

Our recruitment process means we select candidates based on their qualifications, experience, standard of work and capabilities relevant to the performance of the role.

Some tips to putting your best foot forward…

Should I tailor my resume to the job?

Tailoring your resume to highlight your experiences to what we need will help us fully understand your suitability for a role. All our position descriptions and job advertisements include the selection criteria for the role, to help you in tailoring your resume.

How important are the selection criteria?

Our selection criteria are used to assess applications for our roles. It is really important that you clearly outline your demonstrated experience in each area listed. It is best to provide examples, so that the Selection Committee can form an accurate opinion of your suitability for the role. The more targeted and specific you are in your application about how your work experience and qualifications fit our role, the more informed we will be in our decision making. 

Here are some examples. 

Excellent written and oral communication skills.

“In my role as an Executive Assistant to the General Manager, I regularly wrote business reports that were provided to the Executive Leadership Group. I would collect information from all areas of our division and collate this to ensure the important information was included for the Executive. On occasions I was required to present these reports to the Executive, talking through the key information.”

It is not sufficient to state “I have excellent communication skills”, you will need to describe the experience you have, including the things you did in your current or previous roles.

Current Driver’s License 

“I have a current NSW ‘C’ class, open license. I obtained my license in 1998, and have incurred one driving infringement since that time, resulting in the loss of 2 demerit points.”

If a criteria states that you have to have a current driver’s license, make sure you clearly tell us that you have a driver’s license and the type of license it is.  If you are successful in securing a role with us, you will be asked to provide proof of your license.

What steps are involved in the recruitment process?

As our roles are many and varied, the steps we go through to select the right people for our positions can vary slightly, dependant on the role. Broadly speaking our recruitment stages look like this:

1.    Assessment of your application. 
A selection committee will review the information you have submitted in both your resume and cover letter. They’ll review your resume and consider your background in light of the position requirements as, well as assess your responses to each selection criteria.

Cover letter: Your cover letter should clearly identify the role you are applying for. Make sure it is brief and to the point, clearly addressing each selection criteria.

2.    Shortlisting your application.
Due to the number of applications we receive for our roles, the shortlisting process can take some time. The selection committee review all applications, assessing them against the selection criteria to identify those candidates that will be invited for an interview or assessment.

3.    Face-to-face interview
If you are invited to attend an interview you’ll meet with the selection committee, one of whom will be your potential manager. Our interviews are behavioural in nature. This means we’ll ask you to describe how you have undertaken or managed a situation in the past. We’ll be looking to understand the situation, what actions you took and what the outcome was.  Be as descriptive as you can about what you say, while ensuring you answer the question.

You’ll have the opportunity to ask the selection committee any questions you have about the role and working environment. Be sure to gain as much information as you can from them to help you decide if this role and organisation are right for you.

If you have any special requirements,e.g. wheelchair access to the building, an interpreter for hearing impaired persons, assistance with writing, please let us know prior to your interview.

4.    Assessments.
For some of our roles, you may be asked to undertake an assessment. Our assessments are designed to provide us with more information about your suitability for the role. The assessment methods we use will be relevant to the position.

In some instances, you may be required to complete a range of assessments or attend group interviews (this is common for the recruitment of casual Keepers, Guest Services and Discovery Officers).  Other assessment methods include:

  • Case studies
  • Group work activities 
  • Presentations
  • Written questionnaire based tests
  • Numeracy and literacy skills tests
  • Technical skills tests
  • Work tests (practical assessments)
  • Assessment centres

5.    Background check.
Before we make you an offer of employment we will ask for details of your referees. Your referees should be people you have previously worked for, ideally your manager or supervisor. It is not appropriate to use friends, colleagues and associates as referees.

Don’t forget to let your referees know we’ll be calling them. They may find it useful if you send them a copy of the position description and tell them about the role you are applying for. This way they can be well prepared to answer questions on your background and experience.

All Taronga employees are required to undergo a criminal record and working with children check during the recruitment process.  

Some position may also require a medical assessment.  Medical details are kept confidential. 

6.    Offer.
If you are the successful candidate, we’ll contact you to discuss and agree the conditions of your employment. At this stage we’ll agree a commencement date and your remuneration.

Once we have agreed these details we’ll prepare you an offer of employment. If you have any questions about our offer you’ll be able to discuss this with your new manager. 

All offers of employment from Taronga will be in writing on our letter head.

What if I’m not the successful candidate, will you let me know?

Due to the large number of applications for positions at Taronga, candidates who are not invited to an interview may not be notified of the outcome of their application.

If you’ve attended an interview with us we’ll contact you and let you know why we are not progressing further with your application.

Volunteer

Volunteers play a vital role in our conservation work. Find out more about our volunteering program and how you can actively contribute to Taronga and Taronga Western Plains Zoo here.

Working at the Zoo is so much more than just a job!

Taronga is a unique place to work, offering employees amazing experiences and the opportunity to help wildlife. Find out more about working as part of the NSW government.