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About the attraction and recruitment campaign

Your organisation can help grow the family violence workforce in Victoria.

The ‘So, what do you do?’ campaign aims to generate interest in the family violence sector and prompt action from students, graduates and professionals who have the qualities and skills the sector needs.

The campaign was developed by Family Safety Victoria in close partnership with the sector, and was informed by research over several months involving potential candidates, family violence workers and stakeholders.

    Campaign research key findings

    As part of developing the campaign, we talked to students, professionals who were open to a career change, existing family violence workers and key stakeholders - to understand:

    • Knowledge of family violence and primary prevention work.
    • Drivers to consideration and investigation of family violence roles.
    • Responses to roles and take-up pathways.
    • Differences for potential audience groups.
    • How to instil a feeling of pride in existing workforce.

    Potential candidates want to know that:

    • the types of work, roles and organisations in the family violence sector are diverse
    • they will work with a team
    • they will learn from by inspirational colleagues
    • they will be supported, particularly if they have previously experienced trauma
    • the sector is well funded and supported by government
    • working in family violence is about driving positive change for families

    Further research insights are available below.

    Campaign opportunities

    The campaign aims to:

    • Establish that the family violence sector exists and how the sector works with or meets the needs of our community.
    • Promote Victorian Government investment and commitment to develop the family violence workforce and emphasise the range of jobs available.
    • Alleviate the fears of those who come to the sector with experience of trauma by outlining how they will be supported in their roles.
    • Address people’s lack of confidence by creating a sense that they will be valued and supported.
    • Emphasise that the sector seeks cultural diversity in its workforce because it serves culturally diverse communities.
    • Highlight that training and frameworks are provided to support people in the sector to manage their own and other’s safety.
    • Upload and promote job vacancies on the Family Violence Jobs PortalExternal Link .

    Help us spread the message

    On this page you will find resources and information to help you attract and retain great people and ways you can spread the campaign messages far and wide.

    Animated videos

    These animated videos on YouTube can be shared on your social media channels to boost the campaign or be used in your recruitment communications.

    For career changers who want to work in family violenceExternal Link

    For students and graduates who want to work in family violence (female voice)External Link

    For students and graduates who want to work in family violence (male voice)External Link

    A day in the life videos

    These videos follow workers in the family violence and sexual assault sector and have them explain what a typical day looks like in their role, what motivates them and why they love what they do They can be used in your recruitment communications, including in job advertisements or linked to position descriptions.

    Videos: A day in the lifeExternal Link

    Posters to download and display

    Career changers

    Students and graduates

    Aboriginal organisations

    Social media tiles

    These images have been designed for social media platforms. Use them in combination with the sample posts below to spread the campaign messages or to add interest when sharing a job vacancy. Download the zip file below for the collection of images.

    Tile reads: So, what do you do? What if your new job was helping people affected by family violence?

    Social media sample posts

    • ‘So, what do you do?’ It can be a tough question to answer, no matter how you interpret it.
    • Have you seen the new #SoWhatDoYouDo? campaign from #FamilySafetyVictoria?
    • Have you checked out Victoria’s new #FamilyViolenceJobs website yet? It links to a range of family violence jobs in government and not-for-profit organisations in Victoria. It also provides information and resources to help potential candidates understand the diverse roles, organisations and people that make up the family violence sector. Visit to find out more.
    • If you have #FamilyViolenceJobs to advertise, make sure they’re on Victoria’s new Family Violence Jobs Portal. The jobs portal makes it easy for people who aren’t currently working in the sector to find out more about family violence work and see what roles are available. Have a look at
    • From social workers and educators, to communicators and researchers – the family violence sector needs people for roles as diverse as the communities we serve.
    • What if your new job was helping families affected by family violence? Right now across Victoria there are opportunities available for people who want to be part of a team working to make positive change and end family violence.
    • The family violence sector needs culturally competent people in its workforce because it serves culturally diverse communities. If you have experience working with culturally diverse audiences including Aboriginal, disability and LGBTIQ individuals and communities, there a range of family violence jobs in government, private and not-for-profit organisations in Victoria that could be right for you. Visit to see what’s available.
    • Victoria is investing to grow its family violence workforce. It needs people with lived experience of family violence who want to be part of a supportive team working to make positive change. Visit to see the range of roles available.
    • People with lived experience of family violence are a vital part of Victoria’s family violence workforce. If you’re looking for a career that’s meaningful, challenging and rewarding, visit to see the range of roles available.

    Social media hashtags and tags

    • #SoWhatDoYouDo?
    • #SoWhatsNext?
    • #FamilyViolenceJobs
    • #EndFamilyViolence
    • LinkedIn: familysafetyvictoria
    • Twitter: @FamilySafetyVic

    Using the campaign resources

    Recruitment messages

    These recruitment messages can be used when you are targeting specific audiences, such as career changers and students or graduates. You can use them in your recruitment advertisements and position descriptions. You can also use these to promote job opportunities on your website.

    Career changers

    • Are you thinking about a career change? What if your new job was helping families affected by family violence?
    • Are you thinking about a career change? What if your new job was supporting women and children affected by family violence?
    • Are you thinking about a career change? What if your new job was preventing family violence?
    • Are you thinking about a career change? What if your new job was working with men who use family violence?
    • We’re hiring. For more information about this role visit
    • <Another organisation> is hiring. For more information about this role visit

    Graduates and students

    • Thinking about what’s next after your studies? What if your new job was helping families affected by family violence?
    • Thinking about what’s next after your studies? What if your new job was supporting women and children affected by family violence?
    • Thinking about what’s next after your studies? What if your new job was preventing family violence?
    • Thinking about what’s next after your studies? What if your new job was working with men who use family violence?
    • We’re hiring. For more information about this role visit

    Family violence workers

    • Are you working in family violence, want to stay in the sector, but feel like a change?
    • Discover the range of roles available across Victoria. Visit the new family violence recruitment website at

    Talk to us

    • You are very welcome to contact us if you have questions about the role, our organisation, how we support our staff, or how you could transfer your skills into this role.
    • Contact <Name>, our <Position title> at <email address and/or phone number> for a confidential discussion.

    Using the Family Violence Jobs Portal

    Upload your vacancies to the Family Violence Jobs PortalExternal Link . An online employer guideExternal Link is available or you can download the manual.

    To understand who can use the portal and for what type of roles see vacancies accepted on Family Violence Jobs Portal.

    Review your recruitment practices


    • Whether a jobseeker can call you to discuss the role.
    • Highlighting the benefits of working for your organisation
    • Whether you are looking for diverse, representative candidates.
    • Including relevant campaign key messages in your recruitment communications.
    • Using the job advertisement template when recruiting staff.
    • Working with universities to offer placements or part-time work, or participate in career expos or talks.
    • Working with high schools to offer career talks about what it’s like to work in family violence.
    • Collaborating with other family violence organisations to offer rotations for staff who would benefit from a change in role.

    Insights from research findings

    • Potential candidates are:

      • Social work students or graduates.
      • 'Career changers’: professionals in other areas seeking a career change – especially people working in government, justice, health promotion, counselling, Alcohol and other drug treatment services, mental health, homelessness, disability and aged care.
      • People already working in the family violence sector who are looking for a different role or to progress their career.
      • People with lived experience.
      • People who identify as part of a diverse community, including CALD, Aboriginal, disability and LGBTIQ individuals and communities.
    • People with low knowledge of the sector

      People who see the sector from the ‘outside in’ include people who are studying or working in the health and community services fields who have no personal experience of family violence, and no other trigger to investigate or consider how the family violence sector might work.

      They are typically interested in and sympathetic to the topic of family violence once raised, and can be intrigued by the idea that they are needed and wanted by the sector. However, they will not seek out information on the sector as a potential employer.

      People who are familiar with the sector

      People working in the family violence sector or in roles that involve cooperation with family violence services are more aware of the sector and how it works.

      Social work students, and especially those that have undertaken a placement in a family violence service or studied a special family violence subject are also more aware.

      These people are more interested and engaged in the sector. However, they don’t always know or have confidence in their skills and ability to contribute.

      The work sounds difficult and specialist, and people can easily doubt that their skills and experience will readily translate into family violence worker roles.

      What about people with lived experience?

      • People who have personal experience of family violence are more aware of the sector and the work.
      • Those with personal experience are highly motivated, but want to be reassured that they will be supported.
      • People working and studying outside of the sector without personal experience find it harder to imagine family violence work.
      • Their values: social justice, equality, feminist, women’s rights.
      • The opportunity to be part of, or contribute to, change.
      • Having a job that has purpose and helps to make a difference.
      • Doing work that is challenging and difficult – but also meaningful, important and rewarding.
      • Many people relish the idea of dealing with complexity and uncertainty.
      • Many want to work directly with women and children in need, and believe that a potentially fast-paced environment that involves judging and dealing with risk will suit them.
      • One of the benefits of the sector is the diversity of its roles and that there are roles to suit many interests. For some people, the opportunity is about the intellectual challenge of policy and advocacy, others jump at the idea of working at the coalface, and many like the thought of working with young people in a primary prevention setting.
      • A lack of knowledge of the sector and the roles, functions, jobs and employers.
      • Fear of the work - perceptions of crisis, risk and danger.
      • The sector appears daunting.
      • University students worry that their age and lack of life experience will mean they won’t be able to do a good job, or that their clients will judge them.
      • People with qualifications and experience in social work, community development, counselling, psychology and legal work don’t necessarily believe that their training and experience in other sectors (even if directly related) will be enough. They aren’t sure whether or not the family violence sector will be interested in hiring them and they need signals that they are wanted and valued.
      • That there is a family violence sector; that it has a range of employers, functions and roles; and that a diverse range of people, especially people who are culturally competent, are needed.
      • The Victorian Government is investing in the sector following the Royal Commission, with more positions and increased training and development.
      • Those who are least connected to the sector want to understand the size of the problem and the nature of family violence. Creating understanding and a sense of urgency is a key step in bringing the issue (and hence the work) closer for ‘outsiders’.
      • The sector offers training, theoretical frameworks, supervision and support.
      • People want to know what qualifications are required by the sector. When people understand the sector and roles, they understand that social work, community development, counselling, psychology and legal qualifications will be helpful.
      • People with qualifications and experience in social work, community development, counselling, psychology and legal work want to understand what family violence-specific training they will receive to enable them to move into the sector.
      • That they hold the required skillsets and character traits: empathy, understanding of risk, openness to learning, comfort with uncertainty and change, being a good listener and communicator, being able to maintain professional boundaries, being self-reflective, and being optimistic yet realistic.
      • Knowing that support exists help people to feel safe about moving into the sector. People want to know that they will be supported in their roles – including through training, frameworks, supervision and debriefing, and a thoughtfully constructed workload.
      • That working in family violence is a chance to change the story for families, either through prevention or response work.
      • That the ‘intensity’ of the work will be balanced by support and a manageable workload.
      • Current family violence workers believe the campaign should have a broader educative role: facts about family violence, links to resources and evidence such as Our Watch’s Change the Story, and background information about the Royal Commission and Victorian Government investment. This will help to build the knowledge of outsiders who may have the right qualities but lack the knowledge to seriously contemplate a job in the sector.
      • In your recruitment communications, avoid explicit messages that the sector is growing because family violence rates are growing; this can sound alarming.
      • Rather than appealing to a potential applicant’s career ambitions (e.g. explicitly citing career advancement, personal growth) it can be more effective to imply personal growth and advancement by calling out the skills, qualifications and experience needed to do the work well.
      • Your job advertisements should refer to the motivations of potential workers, including:
        • their values (social justice, equality, feminist and women's rights)
        • the opportunity for them to be part of, or contribute to, change
        • the diversity of roles within the sector
        • their potential to work in a career that is meaningful, challenging and rewarding
      • We need to go to them to prompt interest and awareness. They will not likely seek out information about the sector as a potential employer.
      • We should signal the sector’s gendered lens. However, be careful not to exclude the LGBTIQ+ community or men, or deter potential candidates who hold social justice values but who have had less exposure to understanding the gendered nature of family violence.
      • Avoid using the terms ‘family violence response worker’ and ‘family violence prevention worker’ as a first point of introduction to family violence work. These communicate to ‘insiders’ – people who are already familiar with the sector.
      • Highlight the diversity of opportunity, and there are roles to suit many interests and backgrounds.
      • Make it clear when and where men are able to contribute.
      • Call out when you’re interested in people with qualifications from other sectors to consider a role (e.g. social work, psychology, legal, cultural, community development).
      • Outline what sector-specific training is typically provided.
      • Highlight the way in which people from other sectors are highly valued because of the knowledge they bring about the related services they need to work well with.
      • Highlight salary packaging and portable long service.
      • Emphasise that teamwork is a core part of any role.
      • Highlight the nuances of the job (no two days will be the same) and the way in which roles are challenging but worthwhile.
      • The sector is highly skilled and professional, undergoing change and increasing investment, and filled with people who are working to ensure the safety of families.
      • Make it clear that you welcome and value people with different backgrounds.
      • That the sector offers opportunities for people who have the right qualities and want to transfer their skills to meaningful, challenging and rewarding work.
      • Telling the stories of the people who work in your organisation can inspire and encourage others to consider a career in family violence / a role with your organisation. Show a range of people – men, Aboriginal people, CALD people, people with disability – undertaking a diverse range of roles.
      • Highlight the positive aspects about the work, for example that it’s never dull, rewarding, the roles and workplaces are unique and varied, there’s potential to have an impact and effect lasting change, you will personally and professionally grow, it enables you to critically think about how you live your life, you’ll work with/be exposed to a wide range of people with diverse skills and experiences, and you will be part of change.
      • Once family violence sector roles are explained to people with low knowledge about the sector in more detail, prevention roles are typically seen as more accessible than response roles. Prevention roles don’t rely on case work/social work skills, and allow for easier translation between people’s current skillset and experience and family violence work.
      • Prevention roles are less associated with danger (to oneself, and the danger that unskilled practitioners might expose clients to).
      • Prevention roles feel like an easier entry point into the sector for people lacking direct or tangential experience. However, it is also important that prevention roles clearly articulate the sophisticated and complex change management skills and experience required to drive stuctural change.
      • To some people, the idea that prevention roles offer the chance to more holistically prevent family violence is very compelling.
      • The complexities of men’s behaviour change programs and work are not well understood.
      • People imagine these roles potentially involve working with violent or angry men, and this can be triggering for victim survivors, or create fear for people that they will be working with men who are reluctant and unwilling to change.
      • Many people don’t tend to see the skill involved in working in these services.
      • These specialist roles could be positioned as an exciting opportunity for experienced psychologists, counsellors and social workers.

    Campaign kit

    The information presented on this page is contained in the Campaign kit for family violence organisations in Victoria.

    Contact us

    For more information on the campaign or to get in touch with the Centre for Workforce Excellence, please email:

    Reviewed 10 February 2023

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