How to work your way into government jobs

Interested in government jobs? No matter what your specialisation, you are sure to find government employment that fuels your passion and love for the job you were born to do.

government jobs

Image Credit: City of Tshwane

The government plays host to a vast range of jobs and employment opportunities. From a Nutritionist at the Department of Correctional Services to a range of teaching jobs – the South African Government offers it all.

SARS Jobs in South Africa

The South African Revenue Service (SARS) is responsible for the collection of taxes in South Africa. SARS jobs range to include a magnitude of positions – from chartered accountants and forensic auditors, to tax specialists and legal practitioners. Even IT specialist and human resource candidates can find employment at SARS.


Chartered Accountant

Chartered accountants are in charge of a business or a company’s taxes and financial records. The road to becoming a chartered accountant takes an estimated seven years of studies and training. You will need to enrol in a Bachelors of Commerce degree at a South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (SAICA) accredited university. After completing your university studies, in order to achieve your CA(SA) designation, you will also have to complete a learnership programme as well as two professional examinations administered by the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants.


You can also specialise in 10 different fields. These fields range to include taxation, corporate finance, assurance and auditing, forensic auditing, financial management and financial planning.

According to PayScale, a chartered accountant earns an average of R 437 029 per year.

Forensic Auditor

A Forensic Auditor is charged with investigating all the financial and legal documents of a company or business in order to determine if any fraudulent activity had taken place. Note that Forensic Auditors are also hired by companies wishing to prevent fraud and are also able to provide a wide range of services such as data analysis, accounting, general consulting and valuation.


With a postgraduate diploma in Forensic Auditing, you are able to apply for jobs in auditing companies, the Financial Services Board (FSB), insurance companies, law firms and government jobs available at the Nation Prosecuting Authority (NPA) and specialised units within the police.

In order to work for SARS you will have to have a zero tolerance to corruption, be driven to work hard, have integrity and a love for South Africa. SARS also offers trainee programmes as well as bursaries.

Jobs in Correctional Services

Correctional services jobs is another great option to look at if you are interested in government vacancies. The various jobs within correctional services include Senior Correctional Officers, Human Resource Managers, positions on the Correctional Supervision Parole Board, Education jobs and Medical Officers, to name but a few. Think about the correctional services as you would a cruise ship – it needs everything from a cook to a well-trained and highly experienced captain.

Senior Correctional Officer

In order to apply for these types of correctional services jobs, you will have to have completed the correctional services learnership programme (basic training) and a recognised three year degree or diploma. Senior Correctional officers have a number of responsibilities. Some of these responsibilities include the investigation of incidents, managing policy documentation, managing classified information and ensuring control is present in instances where offenders are moved or placed.


Nutritional Services

Employment in nutrition within the Correctional Services Department is also available. In order to qualify for these types of positions you will be required to have completed the correctional services learnership (or basic training) and have a B degree or national diploma in a relevant field. Previous work experience is also a plus.

Within this job you will be required to prepare and serve meals. The kitchen and all of its utensils will also be your responsibility. As a Nutritionist within the Department of Correctional Services you will also have to opportunity to work with offenders, giving them relevant catering training.


Medical Officers

In order to apply for this type of vacancy, you will need an MBChB Registered Medical Practitioner qualification that is recognised by the Health Professions Council of South Africa. Your responsibilities as a medical officer will include providing clinical care, emergency care, implementing and adhering to health care and drug policies, and provide training in instances where it is called for.

Other positions also found within the Department of Correctional Services includes Spiritual Care Manager, Health Care Manager, Clinical Nurse, Human Resource manager and even an Equity Manager.

Home Affairs Jobs

Providing a number of civic services (like maintaining the NPR, issuing IDs and travel documents), there is a range of government jobs within the Home Affairs Department.

Senior Fingerprint Experts

These Home Affairs jobs entail the oversight of fingerprint verification, the processing of photographs and the random batch control of fingerprints, to name but a few duties. Planning, performance monitoring and reports will also form part of your job. In terms of qualification, you will need a three year National Diploma or Degree in a relevant field. If you do not have a degree or diploma, an NQF Level 6 qualification in a relevant field is required.


Client Services Officer

As a client services employee you will be required to work directly with clients and help them in any way possible (like completing forms) and fulfilling other duties such as sorting documents, back office applications and updating the Track and Trace System. In order to apply for these Home Affairs jobs you need to have Grade 12 and a minimum of one year’s experience in the field of client services. While no tertiary qualification is needed for these types of jobs, it is always beneficial.


State Accountant

Responsible for maintaining the Paymaster General Accounts, your duties will range to include working with Safety Web where you will authorise payments and capture supplier verification. Required to have a good knowledge of Basic Accounting System (BAS), your duties will also include fund requisitions and liaising with the Reserve Bank, National Treasury, banking institutions and area managers.

In terms of qualifications, you will need a three year national diploma or degree in Finance. An equivalent NQF Level 6 qualification is also acceptable.

Other types of jobs within the Home Affairs department include a Senior Administration Officer, Immigration Officer, Cashier and a Personnel Practitioner, to name but a few examples.

Jobs in Education

We tend to think of education jobs just as teaching, but within the Department of Education, it is not necessarily the case. While there are many teaching jobs within this department, other functions also need to filled, calling for the expertise of a wide range of individuals.

jobs teaching children

Teaching Jobs

These types of government jobs are the ones we most often think of when talking about education. There are also a number of different fields within teaching you can pursue – from a foundation phase to a high school teacher.

In order to become a Foundation Phase Teacher you will need a BEd (Bachelor of Education) in Early Childhood Development, a two year National Diploma in Education (NQF6) or, if you haven’t completed a BEd but wish to pursue a teaching career, an Education Foundation Phase postgraduate certificate.

A school teacher (for grades four to nine) will choose a field of specialisation when completing their four year Bachelor of Education (BEd). Specialisations here include Social Sciences, Economic and Management Sciences, Mathematics and Life Orientation.


A high school teacher (for grades ten to twelve) also choose a field of specialisation when enrolling for the Bachelor of Education (BEd) programme. Fields of specialisation for high school teachers include Technology, Agricultural Sciences, Social Sciences, Natural Sciences, Art and Economic and Management Sciences.

Aside from teaching, education jobs also range to include posts like Infrastructure Planning and Monitoring (with duties that range to include the design and maintenance of the education infrastructure) and School Feeding (with duties like implementing the National School Nutrition Programme).

Environmental Affairs Jobs

If you have a deep love for our environment and everything that goes with it, finding Environmental Affairs jobs might be a great option for you. Responsible for balancing both social-economic development with environmental protection, the Department of Environmental Affairs has a range of fascinating government jobs.


Biodiversity Officer

With a three year Bachelor’s Degree in Environmental or Natural Sciences, a Biodiversity Officer is responsible for protecting, enhancing and managing the local environment. This is achieved through various channels including the integration of biodiversity with planning and development. You will also be required to implement Multilateral Environmental Agreements.

In order to fulfil the duties associated with these types of jobs you will need a solid knowledge surrounding the sustainable use of natural resources as well as the issues surrounding biodiversity.

Control Environment Officer

With duties ranging to include the planning, implementation and facilitation of capacity-building programmes, a Control Environment Officer is also responsible for providing capacity development support to operational projects (for national, municipal or provincial EMIs). These types of environment affairs jobs require a three year qualification in Science, Environmental Management or Law.


You will need to have a solid knowledge and understanding when it comes to the Environmental Management Inspectorate (EMI) and experience in practical environmental compliance.

Now that you have taken a closer look at some of the government jobs available in South Africa today, why not browse Job Mail and find your dream job? From education jobs to environmental affairs jobs, you can find it on Register your CV today!

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4 Responses

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  2. Bhulana Phillip says:

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