Human Resources Stream

If you have a mind for human resources and want to help our leaders develop the cultural and business intelligence necessary for Department of Education, Skills and Employment (DESE) to be a world-class policy agency, then we would love to hear from you.

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HR Graduates - Introduction

DESE is a participating agency in the APS Human Resources Graduate Program.

If you have a mind for human resources and want to help our leaders develop the cultural and business intelligence necessary for Department of Education, Skills and Employment (DESE) to be a world-class policy agency, then we would love to hear from you.

As part of the Human Resources (HR) stream, you will work with HR professionals to help our leaders to continue building our workforce to be a world-class policy agency.

The APS HR Graduate Program is a whole of government recruitment program managed by the Australian Taxation Office. The program aims to build and uplift strategic HR capability across the public service. It aims to foster learning, collaboration and to contribute to a more adaptive, responsive and future-ready APS.

APS HR Graduates will benefit from top industry expertise and get access to specialised training. Through your day-to-day work at your employing agency, as well as cross-agency collaboration of the Graduate Program, you will help build the HR function’s strategic capability and shape an APS that meets the needs of all Australians.

The HR Graduate will also have access to a blended learning program offering a combination of structured training, networking opportunities and on the job experience. Graduates may also be offered the opportunity post the graduate program, to complete an Australian Human Resources Institute (AHRI) accreditation course paid for by the department.

What our HR Stream graduates do

As a Graduate at DESE in the HR Stream, you may have the opportunity to work across various HR functions each focussing on important organisational behaviour and organisational development characteristics. Examples of some of these functions include:

  • Health and Wellbeing
    • implementing mental health and wellbeing strategies in the work force
    • understanding return-to-work and worker’s compensation arrangements that support ill or injured employees back to work.
  • Culture and Diversity
    • understanding how cultural differences align to an organisation’s values and traits
    • understanding how cultural differences improve the effectiveness of an organisation
  • HR Metrics and Workforce Planning
    • ability to align present and future talent with organisational goals (people analytics)
    • participate in strategic business planning and workforce evaluation
  • Additionally, all graduates in the DESE Graduate Program will undertake a Graduate Certificate in Public Administration as the formal learning and development component of the program. This additional tertiary qualification offers all graduates a strong foundational understanding of working in the APS and in a policy agency. This will benefit you, regardless of what stream you are in.

‘In my time at DESE I’ve been fortunate to work on a few different projects within the department, the most prominent being the work I’ve done on psychosocial hazards in the workplace. In this project we have looked at potential hazards for employees and how we, as a department can position ourselves to be best equipped in identifying, minimising and managing these risks to our employees. This work has been extremely rewarding, not only in the recognition I have gotten from supervisors and peers, but in the sense I feel I am able to contribute to something that is very important to our department. Coming into the department, I was eager to do anything related HR, given that was my field of study at university, but had not given a lot of thought to WHS. Being placed in this team has taught me a lot about WHS, including how to really look after staff, not just their physical safety, but their mental and psychological well-being also.’ - Brianna, HR Graduate (2020)

If you have any questions, email


To be eligible for the HR Stream through APS Human Resources Graduate Program, you must submit a completed application prior to the closing date and time and provide evidence or confirmation of the following:

  • be an Australian citizen by 30 June 2022
  • have completed (or will complete) at least an Australian Qualifications Framework Level 7 qualification (a Bachelor degree), equivalent, or higher equivalent by 31 December 2022
  • have completed your most recent degree no more than 5 years ago on the date you lodge your application
  • be able to obtain and maintain a valid Australian Government security clearance once accepted onto the program when required. Further information on security clearances is available from Australian Government Security Vetting Agency (AGSVA)
  • be willing to undergo any police, character, health or other checks required.

Successful applicants will be placed in a merit pool that will be considered by the APS and Commonwealth entities. Please note that agencies and departments and will offer different employment conditions and graduate program features.

Careers pathways