A Guide to Understanding Nursing Job Requirements in Australia


Nurses play a pivotal role in understanding needs, care and provide the different medical services to protect the patient’s well-being. That said, the nursing profession is high on demand, given the circumstances of better pay and efficient nursing skills. In Australia, there are certain medical institutions who are welcoming international nursing talent.

The expanding landscape in the nursing job market picks the question of requirements of nursing jobs in Australia? Are there any specific qualifications that you need to be eligible to work in Australia? 

In this blog, we are going to answer all the questions specific to nursing job requirements in Australia and the role of an Australian recruitment company in such cases. 

Common Nursing Jobs Requirements in Australia

We all know that nursing job requirements in Australia can be different with each employer, healthcare organisation, or even to a designation. However, there are also some common requirements to get your dream nursing job in Australia. 

Educational Requirements

  • Get a Degree Qualification

The first and most important step to start with applying for nursing jobs is to have a nursing degree. You are required to obtain a bachelor/diploma of nursing degree, or a masters in nursing degree from a well-known university of your home country. 

Here is the breakdown of degree qualifications to get an entry to a nursing jobs in Australia

  • Bachelors of Nursing:

Bachelors of Nursing is a 3-year nursing program accredited by major universities all around the world. If you want to be a registered nurse working in Australia, you must have a BN degree for an entry-level nursing position. 

  • Diploma of Nursing:

If you are interested in a quicker route to gain hand-on experience in nursing facilities, then you must have a diploma in nursing. Compared to bachelor of nursing, diploma in nursing is a 18-24 months program for candidates who want to provide direct patient care in the supervision of (RN) registered nurses. 

  • Masters of Nursing:

Once you have obtained bachelors of nursing and are seeking to progress in the specialised skills of nursing, then you must get a degree in masters of nursing. It is a postgraduate degree in the nursing field, generally covering 1-2 years, that will polish your advanced nursing skills.

Qualified Roles in Masters of Nursing

  • Leadership Role
  • Educational roles 
  • Nurse Practitioner or Clinical Nurse Specialist
  • Pursue PhD in nursing for research roles

Registration on AHPRA

After acquiring the relevant degree in the nursing profession, you must have a registration certificate from Australia Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA). This organisation is responsible for the overall registration process to ensure you meet the national standards of working in Australia.

Think of it as a licence that permits you a legal entry to work as a healthcare professional in Australia. If you are a nurse, pharmacist, dentist, or any other healthcare professional, then registration on AHPRA becomes the first nursing job requirement in Australia.

What is NMBA?

In addition, there is also a NMBA organisation that works under AHPRA to help you meet the nursing-specific education, profession, and conduct requirements. So, when applying for AHPRA, you are, in fact, applying for NMBA as well. Here you are confirming that you have necessary nursing qualifications, skills, and experience to work in Australia. 

There is a slight confusion between the two that makes people think these are two different authorities. But to your surprise, both of these organisations collaborate with each other to determine your nursing eligibility. 

Registration Process:

  • Create your account on AHPRA online portal. 
  • Submit an online application for registration as a nurse. Select the type of registration that applies to your situation.

Step 1: Document Submission:

Here is a checklist of documents that will have to be submitted when registering on AHPRA regulation.

  • Educational degrees, diplomas, or any specialised nursing certifications.
  • Academic transcripts to provide details of courses and grades.
  • Proof of identity, like certified marriage certificate, driver’s licence, passport, and passport-sized photos.
  • Visa 
  • Evidence of English level proficiency, like certificates of passing IELTS and OET.
  • Past clinical references

Step 2: Criminal History Check:

Complete a national police check. As a part of the registration process, AHPRA verifies if you are a safe person and do not have any criminal history. 

Step 3: Application Fee

Pay the mentioned registration and application fees as you see on the website. The fees structure can vary depending on your profession.

Step 4: Verification and Assessment

Once the application fees are submitted, the AHPRA will evaluate your application and observe if you are eligible to work in Australia. Sometimes, they may also call your educational institution or your past workspaces to verify your credentials. 

Step 5: Await Decision 

You may have to wait for 2-3 weeks to receive any response from them. In this case, it is best that you apply for registration during the last year of your college or while working in your home country. This will reduce the extra time spent to await the final decision. 

In some cases, if you fail to meet any of the requirements, the officials can contact you to reapply for the same.

Step 6: Indemnity Insurance

Obtain professional indemnity insurance before starting practising as a nursing profession. This will oblige you to fulfil nursing job requirements in Australia. 

Step 7: Contact an Australian Recruitment Company

Having proper guidance from a recruitment company is essential to put things together before applying for a foreign nursing job. Therefore, it is vital that you must contact an Australian recruitment company who will explain the process, right from registration to visa application to ensure you have a smooth onboarding process. 

Additional Nursing Jobs Requirements in Australia:

  • Work Experience:
  • Clinical and communication Skills:
  • Cultural Competence:
  • Working Rights:


In conclusion, navigating nursing job requirements in Australia demands adherence to national standards set by AHPRA and NMBA. With a focus on education, registration, and essential skills, aspiring and experienced nurses can contribute to the country’s healthcare landscape, ensuring quality patient care and professional excellence in diverse healthcare settings.

Call New Beginning Skills when choosing to work in Australia as we are the number 1 Australian recruitment company. We have ultimate guidance for application, registration, skills, resume-building, and interview prospects, and visa application process for Australia.