Working at ONA in the Open Source Centre

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Working at ONA in the Open Source Centre

Intelligence is about finding answers to specific questions. Many of these answers can be found at least in part in the wealth of open source information now available - if you know where to look and how to use it.

The OSC seeks to provide answers to Australia's national intelligence questions by systematically and effectively collecting and researching open source information. OSC validates that information and produces tailored open-source intelligence reports. We employ analysts with a range of skills, particularly high-level linguistic, analytic and research skills.

Elaine  – Analyst, Open Source Centre

I love working in OSC – it's creative, exciting and hugely enjoyable. Open source exploitation is an emerging field so OSC offers more than just the usual range of public service experiences. I don't just read, write and think – I get to experiment with new sources of information, play with new technologies and find new pieces of the puzzle. I get to use my foreign language skills and experience in the wider foreign policy field – and learn new skills from colleagues with a really amazing range of backgrounds and qualifications.

And OSC is a great choice if you want to work part time. At OSC, my performance is judged on my actual output rather than my presence at my desk five days a week.  For me, OSC offers a personally and professionally fulfilling job that's flexible and family-friendly while still being stimulating and important.

James – Analyst, Open Source Centre

I joined ONA's Open Source Centre a few years back, coming from a large government department. The work environment at ONA suits me to a tee, as I am able to easily liaise with different parts of the Office. I have also made good use of contacts developed over the years within government and in think tanks and academia to better fulfil my team's mission.

As an OSC analyst I use my linguistic skills and understanding of Australia's strategic interests to produce reports that inform customers at senior levels of government about ongoing and long-term regional issues. This is very fulfilling for me given the wide and important readership of the products my team produces. Importantly, as my job is challenging it requires me to continually learn and develop new skills, which is well-catered for through the extensive training opportunities on offer, including travel and language refresher courses.

ONA's flexible working arrangements are also a great bonus to me as a father of two, because I enjoy quality time with my family without it affecting my work or my career prospects.

Robin – Open Source Terrorism Analyst

It's a common misconception that ONA only accepts applicants with extensive industry experience and postgraduate academic qualifications. I joined ONA's Open Source Centre (OSC) after completing an honors degree, with just two years of professional experience in Defence intelligence. The OSC is an excellent place to develop your career:  analysts gain exposure to intelligence, defence, and foreign policy communities. The OSC develops analyst's expertise through in-house training, public service training, academic courses and in-country language tuition. As an open source analyst I also have access to industry-leading technology that has allowed me to develop in-demand data analysis skills.

As an Open Source Terrorism Analyst I apply my Asian Studies knowledge and linguistic expertise to collect and analyse extremist online content, providing strategic insight and tactical alerts to National Intelligence Community customers. I sit shoulder to shoulder with senior All Source Analysts who are some of the most experienced and respected experts in their fields. I have had the opportunity to travel extensively through my work at ONA, developing relationships with foreign partners and gaining unique insights into my subject area.

The broad research and analytical skills and in-depth subject matter expertise that I have been able to develop as an Open Source Terrorism Analyst have provided me with an excellent foundation for a fruitful and fulfilling professional career.