There are multiple defence industry initiatives in Western Australia available to support defence industry employers build and grow the workforce through training, specialised programs, and financial incentives. 

Defence Industry Reskilling and Upskilling grant program

The Defence Industry Reskilling and Upskilling Grants support the development and delivery of new, customised or existing short courses to meet the defence industry's workforce needs – now and in the future.

The grants program invites defence industry firms, consortia of firms or peak bodies to partner with Curtin University, Edith Cowan University, Murdoch University, and the University of Western Australia, as well as WA-based registered training organisations. Together, they will work to develop new short courses that address the defence industry's skilling priorities.

The program aims to support training courses such as credit-bearing micro-credentials and accredited short courses, which are designed to skill people quickly.

For more information, view the DIRU information flyer (PDF 576KB). 

Application and award process

The first round of expressions of interest (EOI) are now closed. The WA Defence Industry Workforce Office (WADIWO) will provide an update to applicants. 

For more details about the program, contact WADIWO.

Defence Industry Existing Worker Incentive

Employers in Western Australia's defence industry are eligible for the Defence Industry Existing Worker Incentive (DIEWI). The program is a State Government initiative that provides financial assistance of up to $6,375 to upskill trade or semiskilled workers through an existing worker traineeship (EWT). 

The DIEWI will enable employers to equip workers with digital and technical capabilities to meet the demands of Industry 4.0 and technological advances across the industry. From 1 July 2022, a total of 120 existing worker traineeships will be available under the program, which is delivered in partnership with South Metropolitan TAFE.

Western Australia's defence industry has identified three EWTs that are aimed at supporting the career progression of existing workers into critical professional and paraprofessional roles. As part of the Lower fees, local skills program, course fees are reduced by 72 per cent. 

The following documents provide further information about the DIEWI program.

For more information, call the Employer Incentives team on 13 19 54 and select option two, or email

Male smiling at camera

Western Australian defence industry employer Franmarine is supporting Sam’s career progression through the Defence Industry Existing Worker Incentive to equip him to meet the demands of advances across the defence industry.

“Franmarine is incredibly proud to be able to support Sam in his Certificate IV in Cyber Security through South Metropolitan TAFE. 

As a company, we are always looking for ways to invest in our employees and help them grow both personally and professionally. 

This training is not only beneficial for Sam in achieving his career aspirations but will help him acquire the skills and knowledge necessary to keep Franmarine at the forefront of the industry.”

Defence Industry Internship and Graduate Scholarship program

The Defence Industry Internship and Graduate Scholarship (DIIGS) program is designed to boost the uptake of interns, graduates and trainees in Western Australia’s defence industry.

The scholarships will place 190 interns and 50 graduates in the Western Australia’s defence industry between 2023 and 2026 to help ensure a pipeline of skilled professional and para-professional workers for the sector.

Eligible qualifications relate to occupations including engineers, project managers, logistics-related personnel, technical officers, commercial management professionals, cyber and ICT professionals, and occupations that support a ‘smart’ Industry 4.0 defence industry workforce.

Through Programmed Training Services, these programs provide first-hand practical experience with global leaders and multiple positions are available.

Benefits to employers 

  • $4,500 for taking on a first or second year university or higher-level vocational student to complete the ‘Taster’ Work Integrated Learning (WIL) program for 6–12 weeks.
  • $4,500 to host a university or higher-level vocational student who are nearing the end of their qualification through the Internship program for 10–26 weeks. 
  • $8,500 to host a graduate for one year from university of higher-level VET qualification through the Graduate program. 
  • Programmed Training Services facilitating the recruitment, assessment, placement coordination and wraparound support services to both the organisation and the interns/graduates.
  • Organisations are able to be proactive in developing their workforce ahead of defence contract award and can try out potential workers to assess fit for their unique workplace.

Employers are encouraged to diversify their workplace through incentives for hosting under-represented cohorts like people with disability, women and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.

For information on the program and how to get involved, contact Programmed Training Services.

Year 9 Career Taster Program

The Year 9 Career Taster Program (CTP) provides industry bodies, employers and training providers an opportunity to showcase their industry to engage young people and highlight the current and future occupations and career pathways on offer.

Employers can guide students to learn about occupations and careers within their industry, and give them ‘a taste’ of the opportunities it offers. 

In addition to feeling great about contributing to a young person’s future, being part of the CTP will also enable employers to build networks with local schools and TAFE colleges, and be part of a program that could shape the next generation of workers in your industry.

CTP experiences can range from workplace tours and hands-on exploration, a guest speaker or a 'day in the life' from a particular occupational area, or other activities that enable students to try, see and do to inform and inspire their future career plans. 

To find out more, visit the CTP portal.

Jobs and Skills WA Employer Incentive

Employers could be eligible for a Jobs and Skills WA Employer Incentive of up to $8,500 when employing an apprentice or trainee. Employers may also be eligible to receive additional loading payments of up to an additional 50 per cent for target groups including people aged 21–30 years of age, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, and apprentices and trainees in regional areas of Western Australia.

This incentive is available in addition to other financial incentives and support.

Find out more about the Jobs and Skills WA Employer Incentive here.

Out of Contract Register

The Department of Training and Workforce Development manages an Out of Contract Register (OOCR), which provides employers with access to information about apprentices and trainees who have been displaced at various stages of their apprenticeship or traineeship. 

Apprentices and trainees who are listed on the OOCR have commenced their apprenticeship or traineeship in a variety of different industry areas, and offer valuable skills that will enable them to ‘hit the ground’ running.

Find out more and view the OOCR here.