Coles Group Graduate Programs & Internships

Coles Group

With over 2,500 locations across Australia and as part of a team of over 120,000 team members working at the heart of the nation, we look to Coles graduates to play a key role in delivering our strategy as we journey towards our vision of becoming Australia’s most trusted retailer.

Discover Coles

Coles opened its first store in Collingwood, Melbourne in 1914, and over the course of the last century we have evolved into an iconic portfolio of leadi…

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About Us

Coles Group

With over 2,500 locations across Australia and as part of a team of over 120,000 team members working at the heart of the nation, we look to Coles graduates to play a key role in delivering our strategy as we journey towards our vision of becoming Australia’s most trusted retailer.

Discover Coles

Coles opened its first store in Collingwood, Melbourne in 1914, and over the course of the last century we have evolved into an iconic portfolio of leading retail brands providing Australians with everyday products including fresh food, groceries, household goods, liquor, fuel and financial services via our store network and online platforms.

In an ever-changing competitive landscape, we remain committed to our vision to become the most trusted retailer in Australia and grow long-term shareholder value. Becoming the most trusted retailer in Australia means we are reliable and responsible, and delivering on our purpose to ‘sustainably feed all Australians to help them lead healthier, happier lives’. This is why we exist. 

Our Values

At Coles, the day-to-day decisions and actions of our team members are guided by our four Values; Customer obsession, Passion and pace, Responsibility, and Health and Happiness.

Supported by our LEaD behaviours (Look ahead, Energise everyone and Deliver with pride) which we exhibit when we’re at our best, our Values shape the way we work together to get things done.

As a team we start with diversity, and we thrive with inclusion. We’re obsessed with building a workplace where everyone is included, feels connected and can belong – and where our team are healthy, happy and can be their authentic selves. 

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Our Sustainability strategy

We have an important role to play to sustainably feed all Australians. From food waste to a sustainable food chain, we want to be sure we're here for another century, creating jobs, supporting our suppliers and making a positive difference in our local communities and to the 21 million customers who shop with us each week.

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To deliver on our ambition to be Australia’s most sustainable supermarket, we know that we must continue to reduce our environmental impact.

Our sustainability strategy has two pillars within it, Together to Zero and Better Together. Our key ambitions under Together to Zero, are Together to zero emissions, Together to zero waste and Together to zero hunger. Better Together recognises that when we work together, we can make a real difference to our team, our suppliers, our customers and to the communities in which we live and work.

To stay up to date on our Graduate Programs, key dates and information sessions, follow our socials:

Why Join Us?

Set up for success

You’ll spend your first week as a graduate at Coles getting to know our business. Our Graduate Program Induction includes intensive professional learning and development sessions ranging from understanding self and business communication fundamentals to internal consulting, business partnering and project management.

For our SSC Graduates, you’ll also spend some time getting to know our customers in store, because no matter which team you’ll be working with, it’s critical in setting you up for success.

For our Operations Graduates, our induction will also allow you to network with people within the Store Support Centre, people from a range of different functions who will support you throughout your program.

Real responsibility

Across both years of the program, you’ll spend most of your time working on real deliverables with clear ownership and accountability.

As a SSC Graduate, your program involves working on projects in cross-functional teams and in year two, presenting a business case to our Board of Directors on a real business challenge. But there’s no better way to understand what our graduates do while in rotation than hearing from them yourself, so take a look at what they’ve got to share about their experience here.

As an Operations Graduate, your program involves leading a store team to deliver a great customer experience whether it be through being trained as a Department Manager or caretaking as Store Manager! You’ll also have an opportunity in your second year to be seconded into the Store Support Centre to work on a business critical project involves our stores.

Support network

We want to support you every step of the way in your Graduate program! As a Graduate you’ll have a wide support network, team members across the business both at junior and senior levels who are there to help and guide you – and make sure you have the best Graduate experience. Your support network will involve a buddy, a HR contact, a Graduate Program Manager + many more people!

SSC Graduate Program

Discover Our Store Support Centre (SSC) Graduate Program

Feeding a nation and bringing value to the 21 million people who shop with us each and every week is a big responsibility. It’s fast-paced, challenging and it’s not for everybody.

Which is why it matters that team members at Coles look out for one another. Because when you’re included, trusted and supported by leaders that really care, you can do your best work for the team feeling like you belong.

From day one as a Coles graduate, you’ll feel the connection your work has to our purpose, to ‘sustainably feed all Australians to help them lead healthier, happier lives’, and be accountable for decisions that can make a meaningful difference to communities and our supply chains across Australia.

At Coles, a bright future awaits talent who are ready to look ahead, disrupt, and to learn and grow. Who care passionately about people, our country and its future. Who are willing to step outside of their comfort zones to take on the types of unique and career-defining challenges only a group with a footprint like ours can offer. Read on to find out more about graduate careers at the heart of the nation.

Join our Store Support Centre (SSC) Program and fast track your career in our Melbourne corporate office. You’ll be gaining a mix of technical, operational and leadership skills working alongside key leaders across the business. During the program, you’ll be able to discover many different areas of the business through the cross-functional rotation, so you have first-hand experience to see how all the puzzle bits fit together!

What makes the Coles Graduate Program unique?

  • Continuous learning and development opportunities before you even start Day One. We understand it’s critical for you to grow and develop as you discover yourself and Coles to reach your potential in being future leaders and change makers in our business.
  • Creative and dynamic work environment - You will have the opportunity to work in teams in an environment where no two days are the same, to make a real difference to the business and our customers.
  • Learn from great leaders - During the program, you will have the chance to connect with senior leaders from across the business, providing you the opportunity to build your personal brand and learn about their own career journey.
  • Support network – We know joining a new organisation is daunting, so we make sure you are supported from the beginning with a buddy to help you settle in, and an accelerator coach to help you kickstart your career. People who truly care.
  • Real responsibility – you will be working on real deliverables with clear ownership and accountability. You’ll also lead and deliver an Innovation Project (SSC graduate program) or a Social Impact Initiative (Operations graduate program), culminating in a presentation to a senior leadership team. The top team also has the opportunity to present to our Executive team and Board.

Operations Graduate Program

Discover Our Operations Graduate Program

We’ve been trusted to serve Aussie communities since 1914 and grown to become a top 30-listed on the ASX with 120,000 team members and a portfolio of iconic brands. At Coles Group, you’ll not only get to make a difference to millions of Aussie lives—you’ll also get to see your impact.

From day one as a Coles graduate, you’ll feel the connection your work has to our purpose, to ‘sustainably help all Australians live healthier, happier lives’, and be accountable for decisions that can make a meaningful difference to communities and our supply chains across Australia.

At Coles, a bright future awaits talent who are ready to look ahead, disrupt, and to learn and grow. Who care passionately about people, our country and its future. Who are willing to step outside of their comfort zones to take on the types of unique and career-defining challenges only a group with a footprint like ours can offer. Read on to find out more about graduate careers at the heart of the nation.

Join our Operations Graduate Program based in our stores and sites across the nation, and through a combination of on the job learning, exposure to senior leaders, mentoring and an active support network you will accelerate your career to become one of our next operational leaders.

Graduates who can inspire customers and are passionate about sustainably feeding all Australians will have the opportunity to deliver commercial outcomes, lead teams to win together, and see the impact of your work on local communities and supply chain. Choose from four key business areas;

  • In our Supermarkets stream, you will be working in store and experience different departments as you build the knowledge and capabilities essential to managing a multi-million-dollar Coles store.
  • In our Distribution Centres (DCs) stream, you will be at the heart of our supply chain. You will learn key processes and procedures that enable our DC teams to ensure that millions of customers get the products they want and need every day.
  • In our Coles Liquor and Coles Express streams, experience working in multiple locations, and be challenged with real responsibility, as you build the capabilities needed to successfully manage a portfolio of sites or stores

Application Process

How to apply

It's simple to apply for the Coles Graduate Program! There are 4 stages to the recruitment process, and we will keep you informed at each stage of the process.

If you have any questions during the process, please drop us a note at [email protected] and include in the subject line and the Function of the Graduate Program you are applying for. Applications for our 2023 Store Support Centre Graduate Program are now OPEN.

If you’re interested in applying, please complete our online application form here. 

This helps us capture information about your background, experiences, and skills. We want to hear why you are the right fit for us! Make sure you check to see that you are eligible for the program before completing your application.

Completing an application form will take you approximately 30 minutes, and once our applications close, you can expect to hear an update on your application within 5 days.

Applications close Sunday 10th April.

Psychometric Testing

This stage of the recruitment process helps us understand more about who you are. Not just your skills but your preferred ways of working and how you approach certain situations. It also provides you with an opportunity to see what the types of situations are you could expect to experience when joining the Coles Graduate Program.

This online assessment should take between 45-60 minutes to complete, and you can expect to hear an update in the next 2-4 days following the scheduled deadline.

Online assessments will occur week commencing Wednesday 13th April.

Video Interview

The video interview takes place online where you will record your responses to a range of questions for us to review. It allows us to get a better understanding of who you are and your communication style. We will be looking to understand why you have applied to Coles, and several competencies that we want to see in our future graduates!

The video interview will only take 15 minutes to complete, and you can expect to hear an update within three weeks as our team reviews each video interview.

Video interview will occur week commencing Friday 29th April.

Discovery Centre

The Discovery Centre gives us the chance to meet you and an opportunity for you to interact directly with us! You will participate in a range of activities during the session, but most importantly, we want to ensure you walk away from your time with us with an impactful experience where you gain some valuable insights and understanding of yourself, and of Coles.

Our Discovery Centre will be a 3-hour session and look to provide you with an update following your attendance in the following week.

Discovery Centres will occur week commencing Monday 6th June.

Graduate Testimonials SSC

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Coles SSC (Head Office) Graduate Program

Hear what our 2021 and 2022 graduates had to say about the program during our recent Coles Graduate Program Virtual Expo held in March.

Operations Grad Testimonials

Coles Operations Graduate Program: Hear from our Grads

Coles Operations Graduate Program: Grad Experience

Coles Operations Graduate Program: Grad Tips

Overview

Diversity and Inclusion diversity icon

At Coles, we are Better Together when team members can come to work, be offered the same opportunities, perform at their best, be happy, healthy, and safe, and go home feeling accepted for who they are.​ We are committed to building a safe and supportive working environment for all team members, regardless of age, disability, race, gender identity, sexual orientation, ethnicity, or background.
 
Supporting this commitment, we have developed five diversity pillars that form the foundation of our inclusion initiatives. Accessibility, Flexibility, Gender Balance, Indigenous and Pride pillars all form the foundation of what it means to be better together.
 
To learn more about our five diversity pillars, view our 2023 Better Together Commitments here: https://www.coles.com.au/content/dam/coles/about-coles/coles-careers/Coles-2023-Better-Together-charter.pdf

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Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander People

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders diversity icon

Good things start here for our Indigenous team members. In 2010, Coles employed only 65 Indigenous team members and today that number has grown to over 4,800, making Coles the largest private sector employer of Indigenous Australians.

We’re recognised as an employer of choice within the Indigenous community and offer a great place to build a career. We have a dedicated support team for applicants, cultural awareness training across all stores, and personalised career development opportunities.

By 2023, we’re committed to increasing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander team member representation to five percent of our total workforce and three percent of trade and leadership roles. We’re also focused on maintaining retention rates for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander team members above the Coles Group average.

We have Indigenous team members working across the full spectrum of our business operations, including over 200 in leadership and trade positions. Whatever your career goals are, Coles Group can help bring them to life. By joining our Coles Graduate program, you will gain exposure to great opportunities within your selected stream and be mentored by great leaders.

You’ll also have access to a dedicated team of Indigenous advisors across the country, who can provide ongoing support to ensure you achieve the most out of the program.

For more information or assistance with your application, please email the Indigenous Affairs Team at [email protected].

Learn more about Coles Indigenous employment here and click here to view Coles Indigenous 10 year document.

Pride

LGBTIQ+ diversity icon

At Coles, we are Better Together when team members can come to work, be offered the same opportunities, perform at their best, be happy, healthy, and safe, and go home feeling accepted for who they are.

We are committed to building a safe and supportive working environment for all team members, regardless of age, disability, race, gender identity, sexual orientation, ethnicity, or background.

Supporting this commitment, we have five pillars that form the base for our inclusion initiatives. These include: Accessibility, Belonging, Gender Equity, Indigenous Affairs and Pride.

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Coles partners with Pride in Diversity to support LGBTQI+ workplace inclusion across all aspects of our business. Furthermore, Coles received gold status in the Australian Workplace Equality Index for 2021, highlighting the active role we play in creating an inclusive and supportive environment for the LGBTQI+ community.

We also offer LGBTQI+ Awareness Training to all our Team Members to ensure that we can help this community feel happy, safe and accepted.

Coles’ Pride Team Member Network [email protected] also brings diverse voices to leaders within the company and creates a strong sense of community nationally. [email protected] sponsors key events in the community such as Big Gay Day and Pride marches across the country. 

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Gender Equity

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When it comes to achieving gender equity, we’re always pushing for better. That means taking action on the issues and working toward better representation across our business.

We’re striving for greater gender balance and to have a goal of 40% representation of women in leadership positions by 2023. We’ve already taken significant steps to achieve this goal, including reaching 36.5% female representation in leadership roles.

We understand that many people require flexible working arrangements, and we’ve worked hard to mainstream flexible working (now more than ever). We’re updating our recruitment processes, looking at how we develop talent and challenging role structures to create a working environment that helps all team members to thrive.

At Coles we also have a Gender Equity Team Member Network, which aims to bring the voice of diverse team members to Coles Leadership and build a community of Gender Equity champions.

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Accessibility

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At Coles we value a vibrant, diverse, and inclusive workplace where the different backgrounds, perspectives and life experiences of our team members create a great place to work.

We’re committed to making our products, services, workplace and culture welcoming and supportive of people with disability. 

To support our customers, we are committed to the continued rollout of disability confidence training to our customer facing team members.

In 2021, we became a signatory to the Valuable 500, a CEO-led global movement for disability inclusion in workplaces. Coles was one of only eleven Australian signatories, and the only Australian retailer in the initial group of 500 workplaces.

The Accessibility Team Member Network ColesAbility is a voluntary, team member led, group who aims to raise awareness and advocacy for disability inclusion and amplify the voices of team members with disability.

During the recruitment process, we know we might need to make some adjustments to allow candidates to perform at their best. Should you require support through the graduate recruitment process, please contact: [email protected]

Hear from our team members Beth and Pookie from First Choice Liquor, Lutwyche QLD…

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