About 800 applicants will be up for just 20 graduate jobs at the Department of Finance, while the agency tries to shake off its cold and uncaring image.

Applications are in for the 2016 graduate intake, and the Finance Department is looking to attract the highest-calibre recruits by advertising positive aspects like its choir and breast-feeding-friendly work environment.

It is understood that the mass-culling of C.Vs has started, given that the department will only accept 20 to 30 applicants for the graduate jobs.

Finance has produced a video aimed at dispelling the myth that it is “only about the numbers” and not for creative people.

The ad spruiks the broad range of interesting finance work, including scoping studies, government advertising, property work and even “telepresence” – using telecommunications technology to bring separated people together.

The department says it does not only hired accountants, but has room for archaeologists, graphic designers, psychologists and engineers as well.

Far from the callous, uncaring, money machine many expect, the department says it has generous serious illness leave, flexible work arrangements and welcome breast-feeding mothers.

New staff will not be short of friends either, graduates from the previous year's program acting as buddies to new graduates

“Having a buddy is a great way to settle into Finance, particularly for interstate graduates, to help them get to know Canberra and learn about Finance from a more personal perspective,” the Finance Department’s website says.