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How to apply and selection process

Defence Graduate Program

Applications open on 1 March 2019 and close on 31 March 2019.

To help us find graduates who are best suited to working within the Department, we use a combination of selection techniques.

Please note: you will receive system generated emails throughout the application process, it is important that you check your spam/junk mail email folders regularly.

Stage 1 - Online Application Part 1

Upon registering your details through Defence’s online recruitment portal you will be asked to complete personal information and asked questions which relate to eligibility for the program such as citizenship and completion of degree prior to program commencement. Please complete all questions; these will be verified at a later stage.

Documentation: At this time you will be requested to upload a copy of your resume, academic transcript/s and citizenship certificate, or proof of citizenship application.

Hint: If you have multiple degrees/qualifications, you can scan these into one document and upload, providing the document does not exceed the size limit of 1MB

If you do not meet one or more of the eligibility requirements your application will not be progressed further.

Applications must be submitted by 31 March 2019.

Stage 2 - Online Testing

After submitting your pre-application you will be invited to undertake a short online test, which will be utilised to assess both cognitive and analytical ability. This test takes only 20-30mins. You will be given two days to complete this.

Please note: If you have undertaken Revelian OCAT testing in the last 12 months your previous results will be used; you will be asked to release these results by following the instructions of the email, even if another employer invites you to complete the test. If you choose not to release previous results your application will not be progressed.

When undertaking the online test you should ensure that you are comfortable, relaxed, well rested, free from distractions, not receiving help from anyone else, and not affected by alcohol or other drugs. You should be honest and accurate in your responses.

After completing the online assessment you may be invited to complete the application. You will also be advised of the streams you are eligible to apply for. It is important that you take note of this information.

Results against online testing and responses to eligibility questions will be used to determine the Graduate Streams you are able to apply for. The Graduate Office will advise applicants of this.

Stage 3 - Online Application Part 2

After completing the online test, applicants are advised which Graduate Streams they meet the minimum requirements for and are asked to address selection criteria and provide details of academic results, relevant skills, qualifications, current and previous employment.

If invited to submit your application, you will have until 3 April 2019 to complete responses to selection criteria and submit your application. In addition to selecting your graduate Stream preferences (you may select up to two) and responding to selection criteria, you will also be asked to enter your degree results (i.e. each subject [Australian degrees only]) and list work experience / employment details.

Candidates identifying any graduate Stream preferences which require a credit average or ‘Bachelor Honours’ degree should ensure they do meet this eligibility requirement. If a successful offer is made, qualification results will be verified. Please ensure you check the eligibility requirements for Graduate Streams you are interested in applying for.

To ensure your application reaches the best possible standard, it is recommended that applicants read the Hints and Tips for Writing your Application before applying.

In Stage 3 you will also be required to complete two additional Revelian online tests – Behavioral and Emotional Intelligence (MSCEIT). The MSCEIT is an ability based assessment of Emotional Intelligence. It measures your ability to perceive emotions in yourself and others, use emotions effectively, understand emotions and manage emotions. You are being assessed on the MSCEIT to provide the recruiter with information on your emotional intelligence abilities as research has shown that Emotional Intelligence is a strong predictor of how effectively an individual communicates, works with and leads others.

Results against cognitive, behavioural and emotional intelligence testing, and then responses to selection criteria, will be used to determine suitability for progression for further screening and attendance at Assessment Centres across all graduate Streams.

Please note:

Stream Preferences: When applying through the Defence Graduate Application portal, you will be asked to select your preferred career stream (e.g. ICT, HR, Engineering, etc). Please refer back to the stream information on this site, and the email you would have received from the Graduate Team.

Educational qualifications: Please ensure you include the degree completed that is most closely associated with your first preference at this point in the application. It is important that when entering subject results (Australian degrees only) that you include any failed subjects. This information will be verified against documents you have uploaded. If you have an overseas degree, it is important you have this recognised in Australia. More information is available from Australian Education International.

You will be provided the opportunity to list any further qualifications obtained, including secondary degrees or industry certifications.

Responses to Selection Criteria: Selection criteria provide a set of measurable standards against which employers can assess your application. Defence uses capabilities identified within the Australian Public Service Commission (APSC) Integrated Leadership System to measure and rank applicants responses to each question on the application.

You will be required to submit a ‘one page pitch’ against the criteria being assessed. Your one page pitch is limited to a maximum of 1000 words to address all criteria questions, not 1000 words per individual criteria question. How you prepare your pitch is up to you, however, please ensure that you incorporate responses and examples against each criteria. Applicants are strongly advised to read our Hints and Tips for completing your application prior to submitting your application.

Work Experience / Employment: Applicants should include in this area reference to any work experience and/or employment undertaken. Work experience is not limited to paid employment. Please include any relevant volunteer, internships, and unpaid employment. 

Referees: Please note that you will not be required to supply details of referees at this point. If invited to attend an assessment centre you will be asked to provide two written referee reports. The Graduate Office will provide the template for these reports. It is preferred that referees be someone who knows your skills and abilities in relation to work or study, however character referees are acceptable as long as they are not family members.

Stage 4 - Screening and Assessment

Applicants who are found to be competitive on the basis on their online testing and written application will be invited to attend further screening and assessment processes. Assessment processes will vary depending upon the career stream you have applied and are being assessed against. Screening and Assessment Centres are held in each state capital city and will be conducted during May, June and July. Please refer to Key Dates for details.

If selected to attend an Assessment Centre, you will be invited to spend the day with assessors from Defence. We use a range of activities and exercises to assess competency for a graduate position with the Department.

You must personally attend additional screening and or Assessment Centres to be considered further in the Graduate selection process.

  • It is strongly recommended that applicants read What to Expect at an Assessment Centre before they attend. Further information and the assessment centre schedule will be forwarded to successful candidates
  • Be engaging, show you can work in a team and demonstrate your strengths!

Stage 5 - Final Selection

If successful, a member of the Defence Graduate and Entry Level Programs Office will make contact via telephone with an offer of employment between July and August, depending upon the Graduate Stream for which you are being offered employment. Unsuccessful applicants will be advised via e-mail before the end of September.