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A growing industry

August 20, 2018 by Shelby Baile

A growing industry

You may be thinking “If I wanted to join the military I wouldn’t have run up all this debt getting a university degree” but joining the Department of Defence is probably not exactly what you’re imagining.

The Australian Department of Defence may become a pathway for many graduates of the future with new and exciting career opportunities being created all the time.

Ash Warlum, Manager of Student Engagement, who represented the Department of Defence at our Careers for Tomorrow Festival, says  the Department of Defence isn’t as daunting as it sounds - and it’s actually a pretty exciting place to work.

If you’re still a little sceptical however, here’s Ash’s top four misconceptions about joining the Department of Defence:

  1. You will not be a part of the frontline military defence - instead you’ll be working behind the scenes in a supportive role.
  2. There are no military uniforms or strict dress codes.
  3. You won’t be deployed or forced to move away from Australia - however, there are opportunities to relocate within Australia and overseas.
  4. There are no physical exercise requirements or fitness tests.

So now that we can put aside your fears of uniforms and exercise, we can focus on something more important - your career opportunities.

What opportunities are there for graduates?

In both 2017 and 2018 the Department of Defence has been named one of the top graduate employers in Australia, and this year alone has seen 350 graduates join the team. They are looking for a number of high-achieving, eager Australian graduates from a range of disciplines to join the teams in both Intelligence and Maritime Engineering as the demand for these skills rises in the future.

The naval maritime shipbuilding industry is set to become a lucrative Australian industry with the Australian government having pledged $62 million to grow and upskill the workforce of the shipbuilding industry until at least 2055, and the Department of Defence is committed to renewing its fleet. This is particularly good news for engineering graduates as this has created a demand for Naval Civilian Engineers to help build Australia’s new fleet of naval ships and submarines. Graduates of 2018 who are employed by the Department of Defence may even have the opportunity to help design Australia’s newest submarines.

The Department of Defence is not just searching for engineers however. If you’re curious and inquisitive – or even if you just consider yourself something of a spy - you might consider applying to join one of the Intelligence departments. The various departments such as Defence Intelligence Organisation (DIO), Australian Geospatial Intelligence (AGO), and Defence Science & Technology (DST) are set to hire 8000 new employees over the next few years.

There is particular interest in graduates with STEM degrees (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) but if you don’t, however, fall under this umbrella - hope is not lost. The Department of Defence is committed to creating a diverse environment by hiring people from all schools of thought - be it accounting, creative arts or even psychology!

If you’re interested in learning more about graduate positions at the Department of Defence visit

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