Brendan is 21 and has just completed a BA Hons. at the University of Otago, majoring in Politics.

He was a student leader and regular contributor to Critic magazine, as well as a champion rower. Now he wants to make a difference to the lives of New Zealanders and is attracted to a career in the Public Service. Brendan thinks it offers more career opportunities than working for just one company. He also likes the vibe of Wellington. Brendan applies for the State Services graduate programme online.

Brendan goes through a rigorous selection process which assesses applicants against a standard set of competencies. Not only are his excellent grades and extra-curricular activities taken into account, Brendan has to go through psychometric testing and a panel interview. There's lots of competition but his leadership potential stands out.

Brendan is stoked to be accepted into the State Services graduate programme. A formal development plan is created for him to identify future goals and give Brendan a taste of different agencies and work experience in his first three years. On his first job, he's partnered with a personal coach to oversee his progress. There are regular check-ins and helpful feedback. Brendan's development plan, assessment and performance review information are held in a centrally managed database so his background and experience can be tracked from day 1 by the agencies he works for, the State Services Commission and the Leadership Development Centre.

During his induction programme Brendan is introduced to the other graduates in his intake and this new graduates group meets several times a year to share experiences and is provided with both structured and informal learning opportunities, including the chance to meet senior executives. They stay a close unit. At the end of three years, Brendan will have a good grounding in what it means to work for the State Services, an active support network and a clear idea of the next step in his State Services career.

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