Coming from overseas

Foreign workers are entitled to the same minimum standards as any other employee, including correct pay rates for their classification, superannuation, overtime and penalty rates.

All people working in Australia are entitled to basic rights and protections and rights in the workplace. There are 10 basic minimum entitlements known as the National Employment Standards (NES).

Employers are responsible for checking every worker from overseas has a valid Australian visa with work rights.

They are entitled to ask you to provide hard copies of your working visa, passport, tax file number, superannuation, Australian bank account and drivers licence. It’s much easier for everyone if you already have this paper work set up.

Know your workplace rights

The Fair Work Ombudsman provides education, information and advice for employees and has useful Fact Sheet: Foreign workers – Know your workplace rights! Fair Work also has an Infoline on 13 13 94.

You may also like to read about the Pastoral Award 2010 and National Employment Stan

Where should I look to find a dairy job?

Before starting your search for a dairy farming job, make sure you have put together the basics: your resume or CV, references and relevant paperwork (e.g. drivers licence, visas, evidence of training). Read more about looking for employment on dairy farms

Backpackers (updated July 2019)

In recent years many Australian dairy farmers have employed backpackers to fill their short term employment needs. It can be an extremely rewarding experience for all concerned. Working holiday visa holders who perform ‘specified work’, in an eligible regional Australian area for a minimum of three months (88 days) while on their first working holiday (subclass 417) visa may be eligible for a second working holiday visa. ‘Specified work’ can include working on a dairy farm.

From July 1 2019second holiday year 417 and 462 visa holders (may be eligible for a third year working holiday visa, allowing visa holders to stay in Australia and work for an additional 12 months if they have worked for 6 months in a specified field or industry in a designated area of regional Australia.

Temporary work and holiday visa (subclass 462) encourages cultural exchange and closer ties between Australia and eligible countries by allowing young adults (18-30) to have an extended holiday during which time they may engage in short term work or study.

Download Backpacker FAQ sheet and read about hiring people from overseas (both from an employers perspective)

Case Study: backpackers – a win win arrangement

For the past five years, Julie and Raoul Pridham have included backpackers in the mix of staff they employ on their 1000 cow autumn-calving dairy herd at Yanakie near Wilson’s Promontory in Victoria. Employing backpackers has not only filled a need for the farm business, it has also enriched the family’s life, getting to know people from different cultures and backgrounds – read more>>