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Top 6 graduate jobs in engineering consulting

Mary Cameron

Careers Commentator
Here's what our research says about the popularity and quality of programs offered by six top-ranking global firms.

Wondering which of the world’s enormous engineering consulting companies offer top prospects for a career in solving the planet’s wicked problems?  

Here's what our research says about the popularity and quality of programs offered by six top-ranking global firms.

Want the nuts and bolts behind our methodology? Here you go.

Happy to trust us? Read on.

The givens.

No matter where you launch your engineering consulting career, you’ll very likely land in:

  • A multidisciplinary environment where collaborative ‘co-creating is the name of the game  
  • A deeply diverse environment where the myth of male domination is well busted 
  • A work hard/play hard environment where the hours can be long and the pressure immense but where your sociable, tightknit team will have your back  

Note the numbers. Trust your gut 

Numbers-wise not much separates the top firms. The ratings range from 6.5 – to 9.3 /10. But who doesn't love a percentage point? 

But as you’re unpacking the space between two percentage points, your gut is skimming reviews and scanning stories. On balance, when you weigh up where to apply, go with your gut.


AECOM is a US-based global infrastructure consulting firm with a staff of around 56,000 working across all seven continents. AECOM’s Australian headquarters are in Brisbane. AECOM provides design, engineering and project management services in the energy, health, government, transport, and water sectors. 

AECOM’s two-year Growing Professional Skills (GPS) graduate program is open to grads in all the engineering disciplines, Maths, IT & Computer Sciences; Property & Built Environment, Environmental Science, Business/Commerce, Communications, and Construction (Quantity Surveying.)

The company is recognised by the Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA) as an employer of choice for gender equality.

Read AECOM’s Employer Profile

Top 100 ranking

AECOM ranks 22nd  in our list of top 100 employers for 2022. 

Reviews - overall score 4.2/5

Mainly high 7s to low 8s/10. 

9.0/10 for ‘Diversity’ – because ‘if you have the will you have a way at AECOM- no questions were ever asked on cultural background’ 

8.8/10 for ‘Office work environment’ – swish CBD, cycle friendly spacious well equipped offices

Top 3 upsides

  • Loads of opportunities to work across different fields and locations 
  • Genuinely and deeply diverse workplace 
  • Collegiate, supportive team culture  

The downside – flexible but long hours (averaging 40 – 50 per week)

Read all the reviews 

Grad stories 

‘If I feel something is limiting me, AECOM is the type of company that will ensure I get another opportunity. Of course, I bear responsibility for the designs I produce, that’s just the nature of the job, but I have never felt overwhelmed. I have not worked on weekends as AECOM really encourages a work-life balance, which is also why my stress levels are at zero.’

Jeff Zhou, Graduate Structural Engineer

‘The projects I work on are highly varied; one day, I might be interviewing cargo owners to find ways to improve the efficiency of their supply chain, and the next, I might be building a model to investigate the economic benefits of urban renewal. Being able to wear multiple hats and quickly switch them can be challenging, but it’s very rewarding.’

Cameron Gook, Economist 

More grad stories 


AECOM advertises Engineering roles, Graduate Programs, and Internships  here 

‘Getting in’ – Q & A on landing a role at AECOM

2. Aurecon Australia

Aurecon is an Australian-based design, engineering and advisory company with offices in the Middle East, New Zealand and Southeast Asia. 

Aurecon designs and manages projects in; built environment, construction, data and telecommunications, defence, energy, government, international development assistance, manufacturing, resources, transport, and water.

Aurecon is the sole Australian company on the Fortune 2021 Change the World List. In 2020, Australian Financial Review (AFR) identified Aurecon as Australasia’s Most Innovative Company.  

Read Aurecon’s Employer Profile

Top 100 ranking

Aurecon ranks 23rd  in our list of top 100 employers for 2022. 

Reviews - overall score 4.1/5

Mostly high 7s and middling 8s/10.

8.8/10 for ‘Diversity’ – aptly described as being ’baked into the culture.’

8.5/10 for ‘Culture’ – described as ‘flexible, kind, sociable and encouraging.’

Top 3 upsides

  •  Multi-disciplinary teams working on collaborative solutions 
  • Clearly articulated career paths renowned for rapid, merit-based
  • A proactive and award-winningly diverse workplace

The downside – Intermittent long hours and intense workloads 

Read all the reviews 

Grad stories 

‘The coolest thing about my job is working in an inclusive and collaborative environment. Everyone shares the same vision, and there is always professional growth.’

Ahmad Fahim Hakimi, Geotechnical Engineer 

‘No day is the same for me, which I love! This is because, in my role, we provide many different services and often work across multiple projects.

No’am Geffen, Engineer, Integrated Transport & Mobility

More grad stories 


Aurecon advertises Graduate Programs and Internships here.

Find your strongest Aurecon attribute

3. GHD

GHD Group Pty Ltd is an employee-owned multinational company. It provides advisory, design and engineering services in the construction, logistics, digital, energy and resources, environmental, and geosciences sectors. GHD employs around 4000 Australians working across 44 metropolitan and regional offices. 

Grads who complete the initial two-year program have access to ongoing professional development via The GHD Business School (70% on-the-job learning, 20% coaching and mentoring, and 10% structured workshops) and a Talent Exchange Program to develop skills and knowledge across GHD’s 5 sectors divisions and 200+locations. 

Read GHD’s Employer Profile

Top 100 ranking

GHD ranks 27th in our list of top 100 employers for 2022.

Reviews - overall score 4.1/5

Mostly high 7s and middling 8s/10. 

8.8/10 for ‘Diversity’ – CareerSeekers and CareerTrackers programs

8.5/10 for ‘Culture’ – ‘99% of people are amazing’. 

Top 3 upsides

  • Sociable, friendly, welcoming, culture 
  • Opportunities to work on big issues and encouragement to excel
  • Strong on diversity across gender equality and recruitment from LGTB and migrant communities

The downside – long (but flexible) hours, the pressure that comes with juggling multiple projects with converging deadlines 

Read all the reviews 

Grad stories 

‘A lot of my work involves coming in on a Monday morning, finding out something has gone wrong and then realising as a young, inexperienced engineer, I have no idea how to fix it. So, I reach out to the senior engineers in my team and propose several optimistic, borderline crazy solutions. 

They usually kindly and patiently explain to me why each idea would/would not work and then draw upon their own vast experience to share a story of how they’ve dealt with something similar in the past. 

Then, together we try to come up with a new solution for the problem at hand and off we go, on to the next. Real cop-show vibes.’

Susmitha Suresh, ‘Water’ Engineer

‘Working in an agile office, I make the effort to sit next to different people each day which is a great way to make new connections and learn about my co-workers.’ 

A day in the Life of Will Ranken, Advisor – Infrastructure & Economics

More grad stories 

Q & A about graduate jobs and internships


GHD advertises Graduate Programs and Internships here.

4. Arup

Arup is a London-based, multinational provider of design and engineering services for the built environment. Arup employs around 16,000 staff in over 35 countries. It has eight Australian offices.

Arup launches its two-year graduate program with Graduate Connexion, a network building, virtual meet-up of all its Australasian graduate cohort for several weeks of workshops and events. 

The twelve-week Summer Vacation Programme offers a mix of on-the-job and formal training plus automatic consideration for a place in the graduate program 

Read Arup’s Employer Profile

Top 100 ranking

Arup ranks 46th in our list of top 100 employers for 2022.

Reviews - overall score 4.3/5

Grad Australia has no reviews for Arup.

The company is rated:

  • 4.1/5 at Indeed – 4 for ‘culture’, 3.9 for ‘work-life balance, 3.7 for ‘management’ 
  • 4.5/5 at Comparably where 82% of 75 reviewers gave positive ratings 

Note: These reviews do not include Australian data.

Seek currently has 49 reviews and rates Arup at 4.1/5 – 4 for ‘diversity’, 3.9 for work-life balance and working environment and 3.7 for ‘management 

Grad stories 

‘When I was looking for opportunities, Arup was one of the only engineering companies that anchor all their work to sustainable development and had a dedicated environmental team. 

Tessa McGahan, Graduate Consultant – Environment Team 

‘I am grateful to start my career in a firm like Arup, which offers the chance to learn and be part of a diverse array of projects in many different industries.’

Jason Michael, Graduate Engineer - Infrastructure (Highways) Team 

Virtual Office Tours – Sydney & Melbourne


Arup advertises Graduate Programs and Internships here.

5. WSP Australia

WSP is a Montreal-based multinational design and engineering consulting firm with 15 Australian offices. WSP recruit grads in engineering, science and technology and business and planning.

WSP’s two-year professional development program includes offers grads deemed to have leadership potential additional training under the company’s leadership framework. 

WSP’s Pathways Program gives early-career employees opportunities to gain additional skills and experience that might not be readily available within their regular roles within the company.

Read WSP Australia’s Employer Profile 

Top 100 ranking

WSP Australia ranks 48th in our list of top 100 employers for 2022.

Reviews - overall score 4.0/5

Middling 7s to 8.7/10. 

8.8/10 for ‘Diversity’ recognised achievers in gender equality, and reconciliation 

8.7/10 for ‘Office Work Environment’ noted for spaciousness, light, and hot desking 

Top 3 upsides

  • Strong work-life balance
  • Serious about sustainability 
  • Supportive, amiable, culture

The downside – Grad rotations not established, so opportunities depend on your team and your managers 

Read all the reviews 

Grad stories 

‘I originally thought I was applying for a Geotechnical Engineering position, but my current boss Jamie thought I would be more suited to the role of an Engineering Geologist based on my earth science background.’

Michael Cross, Graduate Engineering Geologist

‘…in this company, the doors for me are wide open. I could work abroad, stay within the company but work in a different section or state, or even switch to the client's side.’

Kate Lipczynski, Undergraduate Engineer 

Take a peek at a day in the life of some WSP grads 


WSP advertise Graduate roles and Internships here.

5 Insider tips for landing a graduate job at WSP Australia 

6. Jacobs Australia

Jacobs employs 55,000 staff in 40 countries, including 13 offices across Australia.  Their teams work on solving pressing infrastructural problems in urban design, energy and environment, advanced manufacturing, cyber security, and many other areas.

Jacobs offers grads a two-year ‘ANZ Development Program’ focused on integrating into the company’s culture and developing business and consulting skills in a nominated industry area, 

A 12-week Summer Internship Program offers the kind of real-world exposure that helps students identify satisfying career paths and explore what’s possible at Jacobs. 
A GO (Global Opportunities) Program offers employees with two to five years' experience a six-month secondment opportunity to work in a new location and culture.

Read Jacobs Australia’s Employer Profile

Top 100 ranking

Jacobs Australia ranks 67th in our list of top 100 employers for 2022. 

Reviews - overall score 4.1 /5

Middling 7s to 8.7/10. 

8.7 /10 for ‘Diversity’ numerous programs and incentives that work really well.

8.4/10 for ‘Culture’ described as ‘positive, ‘communicative, ‘welcoming’, and ‘open.’   

Top 3 upsides

  • Diversity is firmly embedded in both culture and systems 
  • Plenty of early career autonomy and responsibility across diverse projects 

The downside – Flexible and remote working conditions can make it tricky for newcomers to meet and integrate into their teams 

Read all the reviews 

Grad story 

‘…being the lead of the First Nations Committee; this role allows me to embrace my culture and heritage within the business and gives me the confidence to bring the complete ‘Nick’ to work every day.’

‘The diversity of my role and what I can do was super surprising to me. When I tell people I’m a Project Manager but have my hand in civil design tasks as well; I think that surprises them.’

Nick Trevisiol, Project Manager 

A design engineer and new dad describes life at Jacobs in Melbourne

Watch more videos


Jacobs advertises grad jobs here.