Meet the Game Changers

Welcome to the Department of Finance (Finance) – a place that’s about much more than numbers.

We are central to the Australian Public Service (APS) and make a real impact through the work we do.

The important work of Finance reaches into every other agency and department in the APS making it the perfect place to launch your APS career.

This is your chance to grab hold of a unique position, with real responsibility and supportive colleagues, where innovation, teamwork and collaboration are the cornerstones of our everyday work.

You’ll gain exposure to a wide variety of work alongside a great group of professionals. You will also have access to key decision makers who are at the forefront of delivering excellence and value for government.

You may already know that we work on the Federal Budget, but we do so much more. If you join us, your work will extend far beyond managing government expenditure. As a Finance graduate you will need to be prepared to change the game – in the way you work, the solutions you will offer and the unique skills you will bring.

You’ll be making decisions and offering advice on:

  • the Budget and the government’s financial framework
  • the government’s non-defence domestic property portfolio
  • key asset sales
  • government business enterprises
  • insurance services to other government agencies
  • risk management
  • public sector reform
  • whole-of-government procurement

What this means for you

The values of our team underpin everything we do. You’ll have the opportunity to work in a role to build on your strengths and to build new capabilities. You’ll also gain exposure to influential people and interesting work. If you think you have what it takes to step up and be a game changer, then look no further than a career with the Finance.

What we believe in

We believe our people are our most important asset and we make sure we invest in them. We do this by:

  • creating a diverse and inclusive workforce which attracts, retains and supports employees from all diversity groups. To build on this culture, Finance has several networks: Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Staff Network, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Intersex Plus Network, Gender Equity Network and the Young Leaders’ Network
  • enabling our staff to develop their strengths, learn new skills and realise their career goals by providing innovative learning and development opportunities, the latest in online training courses and great mentoring programs
  • providing a workplace that encourages innovation and collaboration with flexible workspaces, dedicated zones for collaborative working and portable IT equipment
  • recognising and rewarding excellence
  • connecting staff with each other through our active social club which organises a range of events and activities throughout the year
  • supporting staff to look after their health and wellbeing with access to facilities and programs such as an Employee Assistance Program, workplace assessments, social club, carers’ rooms, prayer and reflection room and a gymnasium.

At Finance you will:


Undertake work with real impact on the lives of Australians. You will work on interesting projects and see the results of your work every day.


Experience a diverse range of project based work that will develop your talents and push your career to places you never imagined.


Work with like-minded people who succeed as a team. You will have the drive to work hard, deliver to the highest standards and achieve greatness as a team.


Enjoy a whole of government view and gain exposure to extensive networks and influencers who can help steer your career in countless directions.



Graduate Development Program


If you’re looking for a career trajectory with a difference, our 12-month development program will challenge and reward you beyond your imagination.

As a member of the department’s graduate team, you will be supported through two 6-month work placements. Placements reflect the department’s priorities and where graduate skills and capabilities will be best used and developed. To give you the best opportunity to learn about the work we do, each placement will be in a different area of the business.

As a graduate, you will join the department as an ongoing employee at the APS3 level and be paid $60,825 plus 15.4 per cent superannuation. During the program your knowledge will grow, your skills will develop and your capabilities will increase to equip you to advance further through the classifications. By the end of the program we aim to position you as an effective APS5 officer. With our support, you will be encouraged to apply for promotion to the APS4 and APS5 levels during your graduate year.

The program

Most of your learning during your graduate year will take place ‘on-the-job’ complemented by face-to-face training and other learning and development opportunities.

The program includes several training sessions tailored to the department and aligned to the department’s capability framework. Core skills training will focus on developing your critical thinking, influencing and leadership skills, while the technical training will provide an understanding of the budget cycle, financial management principles and project management.

In addition to training, there are also a number of networking opportunities with senior leaders and graduates from other agencies and an opportunity to meet our portfolio ministers and their staff. Our graduates also have the important role of coordinating fundraising activities for the Finance flagship charity.

Growing with us

From your first interaction with the department, the HR team will be there to support you. Prior to starting with us, you will be contacted by your ‘buddy’, a graduate from the previous year’s cohort. Your buddy will be a more informal support in your transition to the department.

When you get here you will be matched with a Professional Development Coordinator who will provide support and encourage you to identify opportunities to further develop your capabilities and experience.

Life after the graduate program

After your graduate experience has ended, the opportunities don’t stop there!

We continue to support your skills development and offer study assistance for further training, which contributes to your growth and development as well as ours. In addition, if you want to share your experiences and become a positive influence to our next graduate cohort – you can become a buddy.

The benefits

  • Make a real contribution, through assisting government to provide high quality advice and services over a wide range of policy and program areas.
  • Have the opportunity to work on diverse and varied projects critical to the government’s agenda.
  • Work in a new state-of-the-art building with great amenities and collaborative spaces.
  • Participate in learning and development opportunities as well as quality training throughout your graduate year and beyond.
  • Be supported by a Career and Professional Development Coordinator and a buddy to ease your transition to the department.
  • Participate in networking opportunities with senior leaders and graduates from other agencies, as well as meeting our portfolio ministers.
  • Finance is committed to looking after its employees with flexible working conditions and facilities such as an onsite gym, bike storage, carers’ rooms and more.

Relocation opportunities

As a member of our graduate team you will be expected to relocate to Canberra, where our central office is located.

We understand this may be a big move for you so we offer relocation expenses and temporary accommodation support to help you get settled.

But don’t fear, you are not alone! Each year, many of our graduates move from all over the country for a career with Finance.

At Finance I have experienced great exposure to a variety of work and engaging projects where I have worked alongside graduate mentors and senior executives. Siva



Graduate Program

Are you a Game Changer?

A game changer is someone who explores opportunities and exemplifies drive and adaptability. They are responsive and comfortable with change. It’s someone who wants to be challenged in a flexible and fast-paced environment. But above all else, a game changer has a positive attitude and a desire to learn.

The Department of Finance is looking for game changers.

People who will work across many aspects of government for a central agency, where the work is anything but dull.

We are looking for people who aren’t afraid to do things differently and create an impact – those who are bold enough to take the lead.

Think you’re up to the challenge? The capabilities we look for in our graduates are:

Capability Definition
Organisational Alignment Expresses appropriate motivation for working within the Department
Self Discipline Approaches tasks and own development in an logical, organised, professional manner to ensure delivery of consistently high-quality work
Collaboration and Delivery /
Client Service
Builds and maintains relationships with colleagues, clients, and a range internal and external stakeholders that facilitate open sharing of information
Results Oriented /
Works consistently and independently, persisting despite setbacks or changing priorities to achieve goals within tight timeframes
Research and Analysis Gathers information from a range of different sources and analyses it to inform thinking on a particular topic
Verbal Communication Communicates clearly and confidently and actively listens to others in a range of settings
Written Communication Writes persuasively and provides clear written advice in a range of styles

Graduate culture

As a graduate, you will have the opportunity to contribute to a variety of activities in the department and be part of the graduate culture across the APS.

Each year the people in our graduate cohort drive and deliver events for all staff. With support from the Finance networks, graduates have the opportunity to be involved in events that raise awareness and educate staff, as well as high-profile social events.

You will also have the chance to be involved in collaborating and coming up with innovative ideas to support the Finance Flagship Charity. Throughout the year, the graduate cohort coordinates a number of fundraising events.

Our local and APS-wide events provide you with opportunities to meet key people and develop a network beyond Finance.

In addition, you can become involved in the external organisation, Social Network of Graduates or ‘SNOG’ for short. This external network coordinates a number social activities and opportunities to meet graduates from across the APS.

We’re inviting you to make your mark on the department and immerse yourself in our culture, where impact meets variety.

The dynamic working environment at Finance has already seen me make an impact to the public service and the greater community. Clare



Application Process

Applications are now closed.
To give you a little more information about your application and the recruitment process, we’ve created a Graduate Candidate Guide for you to download!

Step 1: Apply online

Let’s get started! The online application is your first opportunity to show us your motivation for wanting to work with us and demonstrate your capabilities that align with our program. You will also be asked to upload your resume and academic transcripts at this stage.

Step 2: Online exercise

If you make it through the online application stage, you will be asked to complete online assessments. These assessments help predict how quickly you will learn new information during the graduate development program and how effectively you use this information to solve problems in the workplace.

Step 3: Assessment Centre

Congratulations, we want to meet you! If you successfully progress from online assessments, you will be invited to attend an Assessment Centre. These Assessment Centres may be conducted in Canberra or in your closest capital city. The Assessment Centre provides you with an opportunity to step up your game and showcase your capabilities, find out more about the Graduate Program and your graduate year.

Assessments on the day may include team activities, work sample activities and individual presentations.

Step 4: Offer of employment

Well done, you’ve made it! If you blow us away in the assessment process, we will contact you to discuss an offer of employment with the department.

Are you eligible to apply?

But don’t forget, in order to apply for our Graduate Program you must:

  • be an Australian citizen, or going to be granted Australian citizenship before commencement and be able to provide evidence of this
  • have maintained a credit average throughout your university degree
  • be completing your final year of study or have completed your undergraduate/Bachelor’s degree in the last five years
  • obtain and maintain a Baseline Security Clearance
  • be willing to relocate to Canberra.

Ready to become a Game Changer? Time to get started!

Take a seat, get comfy and be ready to apply. We wish you the best of luck.

Download your Graduate Candidate Guide.

For more information, contact the graduate recruitment team on the details below.

Call us: 02 6215 1717
Email us:
Or visit us: or

People who join our graduate program ‘meet’ exciting opportunities, new ways of thinking and life-changing career choices.

We hope to meet you soon.

My team has been great in introducing me to the Department of Finance. Everyone is so passionate about the work they do and happy to share opinions and ideas. Sophie




You may have questions about graduate recruitment and life at Finance. We hope some of your questions are answered below.

What if I graduated some time ago?

Finance’s Graduate Program recruits people who have completed their degree within the past five years. Our past cohorts have been made up of a broad demographic of graduates, some who join us have just finished their degree while others join us after having spent some time in the workforce. The department recruits using a merit process, which does not discriminate based on age, gender, race or ethnicity, or having disability.

Where will I be working?

Graduates are based in Canberra, with our main tenancy located in the leafy suburb of Forrest.

If successful, when would I be expected to start working at Finance?

All successful candidates begin their employment in January.

What type of work will I be doing as a graduate?

At the Department of Finance, we work on many aspects of the government’s agenda, increasingly through a project-based model. As a graduate, you will have the opportunity to work across two areas and varied projects critical to the government’s agenda and departmental priorities. Further information on the work that we do is available at this link.

Will the Department of Finance support me doing my CA or CPA?

Yes, employees, with approval from their manager, can undertake their CA or CPA accreditation. Unless there is a business requirement for the CA or CPA accreditation, it is not expected to be approved during the graduate year due to the amount of training and development already provided as part of the program.

Finance is accredited as a CPA Australia Recognised Employer to the Knowledge Level, the highest level. Finance was the first public sector employer in the ACT to gain this accreditation. This provides our finance and accounting staff who have a business requirement for a CPA qualification with resources and guidance to assist them.

CPA participants also benefit by having a simple alternative method to demonstrate adherence to the CPA program’s practical experience requirement and to demonstrate adherence to minimum continuing professional development standards. These are both mandatory components of the award.

What security requirements must I meet?

All Finance employees must have a full security clearance at the Baseline level prior to commencement.

Successful applicants will be required to obtain and maintain a Baseline security clearance. Depending on the level of clearance required, you may need to have a checkable background going back 10 years and you also must be an Australian citizen.

Access to Finance’s buildings, information technology systems and classified material cannot be provided until a full security clearance is granted.

So far I’ve experienced a wide variety of exciting and challenging work, including developing an Indigenous Employment and Retention Strategy. Carmen

Are you ready to change the game?

Call us: 02 6215 1717

Email us:

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Applications opening soon