Department of Industry, Innovation and Science profile banner

Overview of the Program

Department of Industry, Innovation and Science

Graduating this year? Already graduated? We want you!!

The Graduate Development Program at the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science is a great way to start your career in the Australian Public Service. Our two-year program is based in Canberra and will commence early February 2019. You will be given a 2-day induction to introduce you to your graduate group and to the department and then, after some initial training, you will start work in your first placement.

Why choose us?

We are a high performing organisation committed to investing in our people. We have a strong focus on developing our staff and providing inclusive and dynamic workplaces. We offer a large variety of work experience with four rotations throughout the department as part of the program. We provide extensive and relevant blended learning and capability development opportunities, a university qualification in your second year, and guaranteed advancement to the APS5 level on successful completion of the first year of the program.

If you want to work for a department that works for Australia’s future – choose your future at the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science!

The program

The two-year program is designed to give you the skills and capabilities required to meet the challenges of working in the Australian Public Service, including in policy development, program design and management, economics and data analysis, and project management.

The first year of our program includes on-the-job training plus tailored and targeted blended learning and capability development opportunities.

Also as part of your development, you will undertake a Graduate Major Project. Graduate groups tackle real-life policy issues which they then present to the department’s Executive Board at the end of the year. The Major Project provides our graduates with exposure to industry stakeholders and business and the findings are used to inform future processes and policy needs within the department.

In the second year of the program you will be supported to undertake either a Graduate Certificate in Business in Strategic Management in Government or Applied Economics & Policy. The Graduate Certificate is currently delivered by the Queensland University of Technology.

Ok, I’m interested. What else should I know?

So you want to make a difference and you like what our graduate program offers. Let us make your decision easy - if you choose your future with us, we will also offer you;

  • relocation assistance if you are located interstate
  • advancement to the APS 5 level on successful completion of the first year of the program
  • four interesting and varied work placements
  • flexible working arrangements
  • dedicated departmental support
  • a previous graduate as a buddy
  • ongoing learning and capability development opportunities after the program.


If you are successful in gaining a position in our program, you may be placed in one of three different pathways. There are Generalist graduates, ICT graduates and Accounting graduates. All pathways undertake the same learning and capability development opportunities and will have exposure to different aspects of their field through rotations. You can apply for one or more pathways in the one application.

Major project

Our graduates get to work together in teams in their first year on a project of significant importance to the department. Our major projects tackle real-life policy issues and give you the opportunity to directly engage with the department’s stakeholders.

As part of a high-performing self-managed project team, you will:

  • develop recommendations to potentially inform policy and/or program delivery
  • liaise with local and interstate stakeholders, agencies, industry associations and businesses
  • build your practical skills, knowledge of government and career development
  • be mentored by senior executives while undertaking your Major Project
  • present your key findings to the department’s Executive.

Topics from previous years have included:

  • digital skills development in the department
  • understanding the sharing economy
  • assessing the effectiveness of community engagement strategies in the resources sector
  • developing the next billion dollar idea in data management
  • digital transformation – preparing Australia for the next wave
  • impacts on regulatory models on business capacity to innovate.

Graduate Certificate

In the second year of the program (2020), you will be supported to study and gain a Graduate Certificate in Business in Strategic Management in Government or Applied Economics & Policy as part of your capability development.  Having a formal post-graduate qualification in the second year will enable you to have the theoretical knowledge as well as the capability to perform at higher levels for future public sector and roles within the department and the Australian Public Service. You will be required to choose which of the two qualifications you wish to undertake at the end of the first year of the program.


Here’s what some of our grads have said about our Graduate Development Programme:

Working in a self-managed, diverse team on a highly complex topic allowed me to challenge myself and develop new skills and capabilities, as well as providing me with the chance to develop strong working relationships and make new friends.” - Kate

“As a graduate, my skills and ideas have been valued in each rotation. I have been given ownership of tasks and projects within my team and provided with appropriate mentoring. My work has been diverse, relevant and interesting.” – Simon

“The graduate Major Project challenged my team to address a specific departmental topic with innovative solutions. We have now been given a great opportunity to implement some of these solutions within the department.” - Chris


Enter an employer or university you want to find in our search bar.