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Applying for the Australian Government Graduate Program – What You Need to Know

Applications are soon to open for the Australian Government Graduate Program (AGGP) in 2024. So, what do you need to know before applying? Here are some of the key takeaways from our recent podcast, where we asked an expert for his advice.

In Episode 10 of Gradcast, we featured Craig Smith who is the Assistant Director of Australian Government Career Pathways at the Australian Public Service Commission (APSC). He explained to us how the Graduate Program works, and the different streams that are available.

“We've structured the graduate program into capability streams. So, at the moment, we have 7 capability streams… Essentially a candidate can apply once. So, if we've got a Data graduate, for example…

A Data graduate, through the program that is led by the Australian Bureau of Statistics, on behalf of the rest of the APS, run a consolidated recruitment process that all of the agencies across the APS that need a Data graduate participate in. But the candidate only has to apply once. And then, they can be considered by 20 or 30 different agencies off the one application and the one assessment. That's right across the board. That's the structure right across our pathways.

So, you've got our Data, Digital, HR, Economics, STEM… We've got a Generalist stream, which is really a big catch all, and then we've also got a fantastic pathway that's an affirmative measures program focused on our Indigenous graduates coming out of the university sector.”

For 2024, there are more streams that have become available.

“Subject to a lot of demand over the last few years, we've got a Legal stream coming online. That’s going to be led by the Attorney General's Department.

We've also got an Accounting and Finance stream coming online, which is really reflective of some of the needs of the future of the public service, which is managing big budgets, big projects, big money. We need those core skills coming through.”

There are many options for streams in the Australian Public Service, but where can you go for more information about these opportunities?

“You can go to APS Jobs or Google “APS Career Pathways” and will all come up in one repository of information. Anything you need to know, it's all hubbed together. At every turn, you can find information about the programs that are available, and then through those central portals, particularly APS Career Pathways Portal on APS Jobs. That will link you off to individual agency websites.

We do provide snapshots of what the program looks like, the rotations, the times, the salary, conditions are service, etc. If you really want to get in the nitty gritty, you can get right into enterprise agreements, etc. Everything is publicly available, public facing, on any agency.

We will start the year with our marketing campaign, usually from February onwards for graduates, in particular. So, all of our social channels, and continuous update of information via the ‘Career Pathways Portal’.”

In addition to these resources direct from the public service, there are some other websites you can look at for information.

“We're very closely connected with GradAustralia and GradConnection, which are really good platforms for graduates, in particular, to source information on not just the APS but obviously everywhere.”

Applications for the 2024 Australian Government Graduate Program open on Monday 6th March 2023, along with other APS graduate program applications opening in early March.

To listen to our conversation with Craig Smith, tune into Episode 10 of Gradcast.

Relevant links