Careers for graduates

Grow your skills and make a difference by joining our department. 

We need graduates with diverse skills, expertise, perspectives and experience to help us solve some of our country’s most pressing challenges.

You can join us by applying through:

  • our Graduate Development Program
  • the Australian Government Graduate Program.

Our Graduate Development Program

Our Graduate Development Program gives you an opportunity to grow the skills you’ve gained during university through work that directly impacts the Australian community.

We’re many policy areas, industries and careers rolled into one department. Our breadth of work offers endless pathways to grow your career, skills and experience.

Whether you’re passionate about science, technology, innovation, resources, or any other policy area in our diverse portfolio, the scope of topics you can work on can’t be matched anywhere else.

During our program you’ll experience:

  • on-the-job learning
  • soft and technical skills training
  • working with other graduates on a major project tackling real-life policy issues.

We accept all disciplines of study and have many opportunities available to use your skills, knowledge and experience.

Diversity and inclusion

Learn about our diverse and inclusive workplace and diversity networks.

People strategy

Learn how we invest in our people, values and culture.

Program benefits

Our program offers:

  • a structured 12-month training and development program 
  • opportunity to contribute to creating a better future for all Australians 
  • competitive pay and conditions with 37.5-hour work week 
  • access to flexible work arrangements 
  • multiple work placements to experience diverse roles and responsibilities across the department
  • starting as an Australian Public Service (APS) level 4 with a salary of $75,886 plus 15.4% superannuation
  • advancement to APS level 5 (current salary of $83,460 plus 15.4% superannuation) once you successfully complete the program
  • tailored graduate support 
  • exclusive networking events
  • placement opportunities in capital cities around Australia
  • help to move (for eligible graduates). 


To apply, you must:

  • be an Australian citizen at the time of application
  • have completed a minimum 3-year undergraduate degree in the last 5 years
  • be able to get and keep a baseline security clearance.

If your degree is from an overseas university, the National Office of Overseas Skill Recognition must recognise the qualification.

Application process

The assessment and selection process may include:

  • an online assessment
  • a written task
  • a behavioural interview
  • referee checks
  • a short phone or video interview (this may be applicable if you’re applying through specialist streams).

Australian Government Graduate Program

The Australian Government offers pathways for university graduates interested in a career in the APS through its Graduate Program Streams.   

There are 10 streams in this program, each led by different government agencies or departments.

The lead agency or department is responsible for recruiting graduates through their stream. You only need to go through the application and selection process once and can preference which participating department’s you would like to be placed in.  

Australian Government Graduate Program: STEM stream

Our department leads the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) stream. This pathway offers candidates with a major in these fields a role as a graduate in a growing number of APS agencies.

If you’re a graduate joining this stream you can work across multiple STEM fields including:

  • developing initiatives to advance women and girls in STEM
  • international and national space negotiations and agreements
  • earth observations
  • robotics
  • neuromorphic engineering
  • chemical and biological analysis
  • electro technology
  • genomics
  • cyber security
  • technology and programming
  • software engineering
  • geophysics
  • spatial analysis.

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