Engineering Officer

Group: Officer
Job Availability: Full Time

The Role

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As an Engineering Officer you will actively manage the maintenance of RNZAF aircraft and their mechanical, avionics and armament systems.

Other roles will have you applying your specialist technical training to research and development of aircraft and equipment modifications, planning tasks and schedules, budget and financial management, design of structural repairs, or monitoring engineering standards. As an officer, you’ll also be expected to undertake the full range of duties associated with military service. You’ll be responsible for the safety, airworthiness and availability of aircraft, and require flexibility as you will at times work across all of the different engineering disciplines. You’ll also be responsible for the safety and management of personnel and resources.

Job on Base

Technical Support – Staff Officer

As a Staff Officer you will be responsible for technical administration associated with maintenance, repair and overhaul of aircraft platforms and sub-systems. In this role you will provide technical advice to squadron personnel and liaise with numerous equipment and aircraft manufacturers such as Boeing, Lockheed-Martin, Bell Augusta to name a few.

Squadron Duties

In the squadron environment you will be a Maintenance Flight Commander in charge of maintenance personnel. In this challenging role, you will be required to deploy from time to time with the aircraft to areas of operation, typically leading a small maintenance crew. Further to your squadron duties you will be responsible for ensuring all maintenance activities carried out to the highest standard and in accordance with airworthiness requirements.

Job on Deployment

The NZDF deploy aircraft throughout New Zealand and rest of the world, often operating in extreme environments. As an Engineering Officer you will be required to deploy with the aircraft to provide engineering advice to ensure the aircraft remains serviceable to complete the task. The role of Engineering Officer while on deployment is both challenging and exciting, as you will be responsible for the maintenance activities, which are often carried out in trying conditions and on some occasions you may be required to liaise with other foreign militaries to utilise whatever resources are available. While deployed you will be the flight commander in charge of the maintenance team, in this role you will be required to provide leadership, engineering advice and ensure that maintenance personnel have the required support to allow them to safely maintain aircraft.

Career Progression

On completion of IOTC you will be appointed to positions within the various engineering units and squadrons. During this period you will be introduced to the roles and requirements of an Engineering Officer. All Engineering Officers will attend the General Engineering Officer Training (GEOT) Course, this course is a 12 month full-time residential course undertaken at RNZAF Base Woodbourne. The GEOT course covers aspects of aircraft engineering and maintenance, including aerodynamics, principles of flight, aircraft structures, aircraft avionics systems and the fundamentals of airworthiness requirements. On completion of the GEOT course you will be posted to the various bases, units and squadrons. Engineering Officers may undertake post graduate training mainly in the United Kingdom, specialising in Thermodynamics & Propulsion, Aerospace Vehicle Design and MSc Avionics Design.

Pay & Benefit Details

Careers in the Air Force are well-rewarded, as well as being diverse and exciting. As you become more experienced and move up through the ranks, gaining additional skills and qualifications, you will see your salary rise accordingly.

While undertaking initial Recruit Course you will be paid as a Recruit (see attached pay table). On completion of  your Recruit Course you will be paid as a Pilot Officer and your pay will continue to increase as your career progresses.

General Requirements

  • You must be at least 17 years of age.
  • Meet the citizenship & security requirements to gain SV security clearance for this trade.
  • You must be free of any criminal convictions.

Educational Requirements

You must have achieved NCEA level 3 with a minimum of 18 credits each in level 3 Mathematics and Physics. University Entrance must also be obtained.

Find out more about the NCEA levels and certificate requirements

Fitness Requirements

You will be required to meet medical standards for general health, eyesight and hearing.

You must be medically fit for service.


Basic Training

Upon successful enlistment into the Air Force you’ll be posted to RNZAF Woodbourne base to complete the Joint Officer Induction Course (JOIC) – a seven-week, full-time course.

 All NZ Defence Force (NZDF) Officer Cadets are required to complete this course which is designed to introduce the basic individual military skills required to continue on to your respective service Officer training courses. The course is designed to give you a basic level of military skills including field-craft, weapon handling, navigation, drill, battle-craft, communications and an introduction to leadership.   It is during JOIC that you will be introduced to the standards and discipline demanded of all members of the NZ Defence Force and the ethos and values required to be an Officer in the NZDF.

Upon successful completion of the JOIC, you will remain at Woodbourne but be posted to the Initial Officer Training Course to commence the 22 week course starting in either January or July. Here you’ll find out if you’ve got what it takes to be in the Air Force, and will cover various subjects including:

  •     RNZAF Customs and Protocol
  •     Drill and Parades
  •     Military Law
  •     Military Field Skills and Weapons Training
  •     Defence and Strategic Studies
  •     Personnel Administration
  •     Communication Skills
  •     Command, Leadership and Management
  •     First Aid

Job Training

After successful completion of your Initial Officer Training Course, to prepare you for your role as an RNZAF Engineering officer you will attend a course at Woodbourne designed to give you a wealth of knowledge on the technical aspects of aircraft systems. Topics covered range from aircraft materials, design and construction and aerodynamics to propulsion, fuel, hydraulics, weapons, instruments, navigation, radar, communications and electrical power distribution. It also covers Air Force technical administration and procedures, a visit to all our bases to view the engineering facilities, and an aircraft maintenance phase for lessons in jacking, towing, engine running and other day-to-day tasks for a flying or engineering squadron.

Ongoing Training

There are also two advanced training courses at the New Zealand Defence Force Command and Staff College at Trentham Military Camp (Wellington). Both courses comprise a mixture of visiting lecturers, tutored discussion groups, visits and individual study to give you the skills you need to progress your career.

Specialist Training

As well as the courses listed above, at some stage during your career you will be required to complete a Flight Commanders Course. This course lasts two weeks at RNZAF Base Woodbourne and continues your training in command, leadership and management. To become a Flight Commander, all officers are required to complete further courses covering service writing, staff skills and professional military education before being eligible for promotion beyond Flight Lieutenant.

Location Details

Woodbourne, near Blenheim.