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Department of Defence

Are you seeking a career that offers unparalleled exposure to innovative technical expertise, diverse learning opportunities and unique development experiences? Regardless of your specialisation, Defence needs engineering graduates to work across a wide spectrum of projects around Australia, and the world that will offer constant exposure to new and exciting challenges.

When applying to work as a graduate in Defence, you can choose from the following development programs, designed to prepare you for an exciting and diverse career in Defence or the wider Australian Public Service.

Which graduate development stream is right for you?

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Engineering Stream

An engineer within The Defence Capability Acquisition and Sustainment Group (CASG) works on complex and nationally significant acquisition and sustainment projects that directly supports Defence capability and the operational success of the Australian Defence Force.

CASG engineers mainly perform and manage systems engineering focused activities and will be involved in planning, facilitation and assuring confidence in the delivery of engineering outcomes for Defence. CASG engineers build and use their knowledge in Defence domains, technology and their technical discipline to effectively translate Defence’s needs into operational capability in partnership with industry.

CASG engineers work with specialised Defence industry partners to deliver and maintain capability outcomes to our Defence domains. This includes definition, development and control of requirements, overview and assurance of design, manufacturing, maintenance and modification of a product.

As an engineer in CASG, you are the technical interface between the military user and Defence industry. You will have the opportunity to liaise with Defence industry organisations and other stakeholders on major acquisition projects worth billions of dollars, such as the Joint Strike Fighter, soldier combat vehicles and protection systems, electronic warfare, communications and surveillance systems and guided weapons.

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Maritime Engineering and Naval Construction (Future Ships and Submarines) Stream

As a maritime engineer you will directly support Australian Navy capability through your work on the future submarine program or acquisition of the new Hunter Class anti-submarine warfare frigates and other shipbuilding programs.

The Defence Capability Acquisition and Sustainment Group’s (CASG) engineers are given opportunities to maintain and broaden their engineering and technical skills and be cross-trained to work in a range of disciplines. Being a part of one of the largest capability delivery organisations in Australia, gives you longer term career options to move into other functions, such as project management, contracting, asset management and logistics as well as build your engineering skills through recognition as a professional engineer through certification with peak engineering bodies.

You will also continually be provided opportunities to work across the lifecycle of managing assets, from being involved in the initiation of projects to disposing of assets when they have reached their end of life.

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Estate and Infrastructure Stream

As an engineer in the Estate and Infrastructure Stream, you will use to technical knowledge to develop engineering policies and standards that support Defence capability and to conduct engineering services master planning to support the development of the Defence estate. You will learn contract and project management skills that will allow you to manage the construction of new facilities to ensure Defences capability requirements are met. You will be involved in the development of wide range of facilities from standard commercial type facilities such office buildings and sleeping accommodation through to complex Defence specific facilities such as wind tunnels, live fire ranges and underwater escape trainers.

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Research and Innovation Stream

Think ships, submarines, Joint Strike Fighter, hypersonics, land vehicles, space systems, radar systems, autonomous vehicles and all the integrated technology and you will only begin to imagine the endless research engineering opportunities at DST. As a research engineer, you will use your degree to conduct research and create knowledge, continuously pushing the boundaries to ensure that Australia’s Defence Capabilities are at the forefront. Whether you have an engineering degree in aerospace, electronics/ electrical, mechanical/ mechatronics, or systems or related disciplines, there is an opportunity for you!

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Intelligence and Cyber Stream

Our Intelligence agencies possess an insatiable demand for engineering specialists. We employ engineering graduates in analyst and technologist roles to undertake the following critical work: To view more information visit Defence Intelligence and Cyber Stream opportunities

Australian Signals Directorate (ASD)

The Australian Signals Directorate (ASD) is a vital member of Australia’s national intelligence community. Our motto, Reveal their secrets. Protect our own, summarises our roles: we collect foreign intelligence by interception; we provide advice and assistance on cyber security; and we conduct offensive cyber operations. ASD finds that its best teams work with a variety of skills and specialities, and that the diversity in those teams really helps to deliver innovative results.

Engineering and technical specialists keep our unique systems on the leading edge, supporting all our work. We need a broad range of hardware and software specialists to develop, build and maintain everything from simple electronics to supercomputers and from small scripts to complex systems. We have roles for software, systems, network and communications engineers.

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Defence Intelligence Organisation (DIO)

Defence Intelligence Organisation (DIO) analyses information from a range of national and international sources and creates insightful, reliable and incisive assessments that help defend Australia and protect its interests. Our mission is to provide the best intelligence possible to the intelligence consumer. To achieve this mission, DIO requires analysts with engineering qualifications including Aeronautical, Aerospace, Nuclear, Space Systems, Electronic, Electrical, Communications, Digital Systems, Systems, Explosive Ordnance, Civil and Mechanical. An analyst within DIO conducts all-source analysis of threat weapons systems, including future threat. They may also conduct complex modelling and simulation activities and work on signatures predictions.

This analysis informs government consideration of major acquisition projects worth billions of dollars, such as the future submarines, the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter and the Air Warfare Destroyer. It also supports Australian Defence Force personnel deployed on operations around the world, by identifying vulnerabilities and potential countermeasures to mitigate this risk.

DIO’s technical intelligence analysts are given opportunities to maintain and broaden their technical skills, receive extensive training in the tradecraft of intelligence, and travel internationally to share ideas with a broad network of technical intelligence experts who stay on the cutting edge of advances in military capability.

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Navy Civilian Engineer Development Program

The Navy Civilian Engineer Development Program (CEDP) is a Canberra based program placed within the Naval Technical Bureau (NTB), Navy Engineering Division. As an engineer in the Naval Civilian Development Program, you will use your engineering knowledge to assist in the delivery of technical requirements, specifications, tender evaluations and have the opportunity to participate in tests and trials. This work includes the analysis of failures and recommending solutions. The ships and submarines of the Royal Australian Navy are unique and challenging platforms that combine the systems for delivering mission effect integration with the crews’ work place, recreation and accommodation in a single environment

Quick Details

  • Degree types: Most Engineering disciplines
  • Salary:
    • Engineering, Maritime Engineering and Naval Construction, Estate and Infrastructure, Research and Innovation, ASD, DIO: APS 4: $67,100 pa + 15.4% super. Upon successful completion of the program, graduates will advance to APS 5: $73,636 pa + 15.4% super.
    • Navy Civilian Engineer Development Program: APS 4: $67,100 pa + 15.4% super. Upon successful completion of the program, graduates will advance to APS 6: $80,669 pa + 15.4% super.
  • Program:
    • Engineering Stream – 12 months – 3 x 4 month rotations 
    • Maritime Engineering and Naval Construction Stream – 18 months – 3 x 6 month rotations (one in Canberra)
    • Research and Innovation Stream – 12 months – 2 x 6 month rotations
    • ASD, DIO – 12 months – 3 x 4 month rotations (some variations for to accommodate tradecraft specific training)
    • Naval Civilian Engineer Development Program - 36 months – 6 x 6 month rotations
  • Eligibility: View eligibility requirements
  • Intake:
    • Engineering, Maritime Engineering and Naval Construction, Estate and Infrastructure, Research and Innovation – February
    • ASD, DIO - February (all), July (ASD only)
  • Location:
    • Estate and Infrastructure, Maritime Engineering and Naval Construction - Various Australia wide (Canberra, Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide, Brisbane, Perth, Newcastle)
    • Engineering, ASD, DIO – Canberra 
    • Research and Innovation Stream – Adelaide, Canberra, Melbourne, Brisbane, Tasmania 
    • Navy Civilian Engineer Development Program - Canberra


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