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Graduate program

For: Information seekers

The Comcare graduate program is a great way to make your transition from university to the workforce in the Australian Public Service.


Kick start your career as a graduate

At Comcare, we employ graduates from a range of educational disciplines.

As a graduate, we provide you with training and development and an attractive remuneration package in a challenging, rewarding and supportive workplace.

Our Graduate Program information pack provides full program details.

Our graduate program explained

Job placements

Our graduate program starts in early February and runs for 12 months. During this time graduates undertake at least two placements.

The objective of placements is to allow graduates to experience Comcare's business through on-the-job learning in different work areas. The placements are based on a graduate’s skills and abilities as well as the requirements of the business area.

A Graduation Ceremony is held at the end of the program.

While we have regional offices across Australia, all graduate positions are based in Canberra.

Learning and development

We are committed to providing a comprehensive training and development program including work rotation placements, technical and corporate training as well as on-the-job experiences.

Graduates attend workshops, seminars and training in a variety of areas which can include:

  • Stakeholder engagement
  • Presentation skills
  • APS decision making
  • Working in teams
  • Developing policy
  • APS decision making
  • Influencing up
  • APS briefing and responding
  • Stakeholders and communication
  • Change and resilience
  • Progressing your APS career
  • Structuring work
  • Project management
  • Financial management.

Business areas may also provide you with further learning and development opportunities specific to your work area.

Graduates are involved in other activities including a 'corporate project'. Working collaboratively to address a current strategic challenge facing Comcare, graduates research the issues, develop recommendations and provide a written report and presentation.

Support networks

We provide our graduates with support networks during the program. These include:

Mentors and buddies

Graduates are allocated a buddy - a former graduate - who is a friendly face during the first few months and is on hand to ask those 'settling in' questions.

In addition to a buddy, each graduate may be allocated a mentor who provides support and guidance.

Graduate Coordinator

Our Graduate Coordinator provides on-the-ground support for:

  • relocating
  • your first day
  • learning and development
  • completing the program and graduation.

Direct supervisor

As a graduate, you report to a direct supervisor.

Social Network of Graduates membership

Graduates are also provided with membership to the Social Network of Graduates (SNoG). The network is a collective group of Graduates from all APS agencies and provides opportunities to meet and network with other graduates and participate in activities such as a Ski Trip, Trivia Competitions and the SNoG Ball.

What we look for

Personal traits and approach

We look for people who are innovative, passionate, energetic and enthusiastic who:

  • create positive working environments
  • are honest and truthful with others
  • perform at a high standard
  • collaborate
  • commit to finding innovative and practical solutions
  • respond to changing needs
  • focus on the customer and client
  • are ready to use their experience and knowledge to deliver results.

Eligibility

To be eligible for our graduate program you must:

  • be an Australian citizen
  • have completed an undergraduate degree with a credit average or higher
  • have completed your degree within the last three years
  • be able to relocate to Canberra.

We promote workplace diversity and encourage applications from candidates with a disability, mature age students and applicants from a non-English speaking background.

We seek applications for our program from Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people through an affirmative measures recruitment process.

Why work with us

We provide you with opportunities to broaden your skills and gain experience across business areas.

Graduates begin at the APS Level 4.

We offer many benefits including:

  • competitive and attractive remuneration
  • structured 12-month learning and development program
  • opportunities to grow personally and to develop your career
  • standard working week of 37.5 hours
  • flexible work hours, known as 'flextime', to assist with work and life balance
  • annual and personal leave
  • commitment to equity and diversity
  • assistance to relocate to Canberra, if needed
  • mentoring and buddy program
  • support for further study through studies assistance when you complete the Comcare graduate program. This also includes generous financial and leave assistance.

As an employer, we are committed to delivering on our Employee Value Propositions.

How to apply

The Comcare graduate program is advertised on our Careers site and APSJobs.

We include details on this page when the program is open for applications.

For any queries about the Comcare graduate program please contact graduate.recruitment@comcare.gov.au.

If you are offered a graduate position

Candidates who are offered a position are subject to a police check and a medical assessment, which are standard conditions of employment at Comcare.

There is a 12-month probationary period and graduates are required to successfully complete the requirements of the program. After this, graduates are engaged as ongoing permanent employees.

Upon completing the program, graduates may apply for a higher APS level position through the regular open competitive merit application process.


Hear from other graduates

Who better to give you an idea of what the Comcare graduate program is like than hearing it directly from our previous graduates.

Ruby James

Degree: Bachelor of Health Sciences and Master of Speech Pathology

Ruby's graduate experience

If you have come, or are approaching the end of your studies and trying to decide what’s next for you, I strongly suggest that you consider Comcare’s graduate program as a stepping stone to your career.

As an insight to my own experience, I studied a Bachelor of Health Sciences and Master of Speech Pathology. At the end of my studies, I felt that I was ready for new challenges and due to the interesting and meaningful work it does within the public sector and community, Comcare was my employer of choice.

Over the course of my graduate program, I obtained many different experiences, where I had the chance to learn and develop new skills.

Some of my experiences included working in a helpdesk role, where I helped internal and external stakeholders to resolve technical issues; meeting senior staff from across the APS while assisting in the coordination of Inter Departmental Forums; and working in the Communications team where I was developing promotional materials, articles and undertaking projects.

I find the culture within Comcare excellent and have been pleased to work in teams where my managers and workmates are supportive and engaged in the work that they do. At Comcare, you know that the contributions you make towards work health and safety or rehabilitation are making a real difference to people.

Lauren Armstrong

Degree: Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor of Business (Human Resource Management)

Lauren’s graduate experience

During Comcare’s graduate program, I rotated through three different teams within the four of Comcare’s groups. The three rotations provided me with a range of knowledge and experience undertaking work that was relevant to my university qualifications and career interests. My graduate year provided me with an understanding of Comcare as well as the wider Australian Public Service.

As Comcare is an agency that has a small intake of graduates, we were able to work closely with senior staff who were focused on and interested in our professional development.

As part of Comcare’s graduate program, we participated in the Australian Public Service Commission’s graduate development program. This involved completing a major project on early intervention and attending a number of workshops at the Commission.

Throughout the process of completing the major project, we were provided with multiple opportunities to liaise and network with Comcare employees as well as Comcare’s external stakeholders. Once the major project was finalised, it was passed on to an internal Comcare team who continued to work on and progress our recommendations.

At the start of Comcare’s graduate program, I met my fellow 2016 Comcare graduate cohort as well as Comcare graduates from previous years. Through the APSC’s Graduate Development Program, we also met graduates from other agencies and departments.

Being able to meet and network with other graduates made the transition from interstate easier and improved the overall enjoyment of my graduate year. The Social Network of Graduates also run events throughout the year which is another fun way to get involved and make the most of your graduate experience.

Participating in Comcare’s graduate program is a great way to start your career in the Australian Public Service.

Adrian Hearne

Degree: Bachelor of Science (Chemistry and Mathematics), Bachelor of Laws (Honours)

Adrian’s graduate experience

I joined the Comcare graduate program in the year after I completed my bachelor degrees. I was placed in three different teams through the course of the year. These different placements exposed me to the breadth of Comcare’s SRC Act-related operations. They have assisted me in my current position, and expanded my understanding of Comcare and the Australian public service.

Comcare’s graduates undertook a variety of activities, chief among which was the Diploma of Government course run by the Public Service Commission. This course consisted of many seminars on topics related to the public service, and a Major Project on an area relevant to Comcare. This course was a good way to obtain a Diploma of Government certificate.

We attended many seminars and other events organised Public Service Commission for all of the graduates in the various public service agencies.

I enjoyed my graduate year. The people at Comcare are friendly and eager to assist newcomers. The special status of graduates allowed us to meet and work with senior people in the organisation, and to work across a broad range of topics.

Page last reviewed: 12 November 2019
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Comcare
GPO Box 9905, Canberra, ACT 2601
1300 366 979 | www.comcare.gov.au

Date printed 27 May 2020

https://www.comcare.gov.au/about/careers/graduate-program