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2023 DESE Graduate Program – Finance Stream

Applications are now open now for finance and accounting graduates!

Do you have a university qualification and a desire to make a difference for all Australians? We want to hear from graduates with tertiary qualifications in commerce or accounting related disciplines.

At the Department of Education, Skills and Employment (DESE), we are passionate about creating opportunities and driving better outcomes for people, through education, skills and employment pathways.
Our work is broad and requires people with all types of qualifications including graduates with commerce or accounting related disciplines 

Graduates working in our finance area will help shape the delivery of essential services within the financial resource management framework. By providing sound financial management advice to the executive team, the department helps shape policy that impacts on the lives of Australians. DESE finance graduates are given real responsibility from the start, and experience learning on the job that firmly sets up their careers in the public service and beyond. Some examples of the type of work you may undertake includes: 

  • Preparing detailed budgets and costings for projects, initiatives and DESE groups.
  • Interpreting accounting standards and provide financial analysis and reporting.
  • Writing briefs including senate estimates and updates to internal policies and guidelines
  • Detailed account reconciliations and reporting
  • Assisting in procurement activities including interpretation of the Commonwealth Procurement Guidelines
  • Problem solving, conducting process mapping and suggesting improvements

Read the Q&A Finance Steam Q&A Fact Sheet. {2023 Finance Stream FAQ.pdf}

If you choose the finance pathway as your preference in the application process, you will also be considered for the generalist pathway as well.

Our Program

As a DESE Graduate, you will be exposed to many facets of our portfolio as you build your capability during the Program.
Being part of a graduate cohort is a great way for you to transition from education to employment. We know firsthand the significance of this milestone and you'll find our graduate program connects you to friendly, experienced professionals who will help you apply your skills and knowledge as you start your career.

The DESE Graduate Program is a ten-month program and runs from February to December each year. As a DESE Graduate you will experience:

  • a holistic view of working in a government agency through two allocated work placements, 
  • a formal learning and development program (including a Graduate Certificate in Public Administration),
  • on-the-job experience and the opportunity to work with and learn from subject matter experts.
  • a range of formal and on-the-job training activities designed to provide you with the tools to develop as an APS officer, 
  • working in a supportive, inclusive and flexible working environment, and
  • various opportunities to be involved in a wide range of networks, social and fundraising events.

The DESE Graduate program also offers:

  • relocation assistance to move to Canberra (subject to COVID-19 public health and travel advice at the time you start).
  • permanent ongoing employment in the Australian Public Service,
  • career progression from APS Level 3.1 to APS Level 5.1 on successful completion of the program
  • support from a buddy/alumni,
  • an Employee Assistance Program for wellbeing and career support,
  • dedicated buddy and supervisor
  • a dedicated Graduate Sponsor passionate about seeing you thrive.

Positions are primarily located in Canberra however some opportunities may be available in our State Offices. 

Education and jobs are central to Australia’s COVID-19 recovery and our department has a big program of work to deliver. That is why It is an exciting time to join DESE. 

Join us as we work to implement transformative government policies and programs and draw on the best research and evidence to improve education and employment outcomes for Australians. Not only are we looking for strategic, fresh-thinking, innovative and high performing graduates, but also, we’re looking for graduates that are enthusiastic, motivated and open to learning. Additionally, flexibility and interpersonal skills are key attributes that will help you be successful in your graduate year and beyond as you apply your degree in ways you never imagined! 

If you have a desire to work for a department that informs evidence-based policy which aims to help develop and improve outcomes for Australians, we want to hear from you.
Further information about our graduate program, including what we offer our graduates, is available on our website:

Note: From 1 July 2022 DESE will become the Department of Education and a new entity will be created called the Department of Employment and Workplace Relations. The core purpose of both departments remains the same, that is, to create opportunities and drive better outcomes for people, through education, skills and employment pathways. Through this recruitment process, we are seeking graduates for both departments, and if successful, you may be offered a position in either department.

Closed a month ago
Closed a month ago
  • Job type:Entry Level Jobs
  • Disciplines:

    Accounting, Actuary, Administration, Arts and Humanities,

  • Work rights:

    Australian Citizen

  • Work from home:

    Hybrid remote

    Hybrid remote

    Employees are allowed to work remotely some of the time but most of the work is done at the company’s physical office. Remote work is considered a perk or a privilege. For example, an employee may work from home for 1-2 days per week.

  • Locations:

    Canberra, Sydney, Brisbane,

  • Program Duration

    10 months






    Feb 2023 (approx)

  • Closing Date:3rd Jul 2022, 1:59 pm


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