Regional Employment Trials

Up to $200,000 is available from the Regional Employment Trials to trial local approaches to delivering employment related projects.


Regional Employment Trials

The Regional Employment Trials program provides local stakeholders in selected regions, including businesses, not-for-profits and local government agencies, with grants to trial local approaches to delivering employment related projects. Regions are primarily based on Regional Development Australia boundaries, unless indicated otherwise.



The Regional Employment Trials program (the program) will run over 2 years from the 2018-19 to 2019-20 financial years. The program was announced as part of the 2018-19 Budget.

Under the program, local employment facilitators will be engaged to advise Regional Development Australia committees on employment issues and work with organisations to develop tailored projects that help job seekers prepare for and find work. The program will test regional and local approaches to delivering employment related projects, by taking into account regional variation and ensuring that local economic opportunities are promoted to employment services providers and leveraged by job seekers.

Local stakeholders in the selected regions can develop project proposals that address local employment needs. To facilitate a strong connection with employment programs, at least one jobactive, ParentsNext or Transition to Work employment services provider must be involved with each project. This provider/s should be consulted in the development phase of the project to gain their support and may provide job seekers to participate in the project. Depending on how the project is organised, other employment service providers in the region may also provide job seekers to participate on a funded project.



The objectives of the program are to deliver:

  • strong connections between regional stakeholders, including employment services providers
  • employment initiatives that meet local needs
  • improved awareness of local labour markets
  • the potential for improved regional employment outcomes

The intended outcomes of the program are:

  • initiatives that will benefit unemployed people and improve employment outcomes in selected regions
  • increased training, professional development and skills education opportunities that are aligned with regional priorities to support employment outcomes
  • better connected regional employment stakeholders able to deliver sustainable employment opportunities



The Australian Government has announced a total of $10 million over 2 years for the grant program. $1 million will be available in each of the trial RDA regions below. $500,000 per region will be available for the 2018-19 financial year and $500,000 per region for the 2019-20 financial year.

The grant amount will be up to 75 per cent of eligible project costs (grant percentage).

  • The minimum grant amount is $7,500.
  • The maximum grant amount is $200,000.


Eligible Projects

To be eligible your project must:

  • provide opportunities and assistance to help unemployed people prepare for and find work
  • include eligible activities and eligible expenditure
  • have at least $10,000 in eligible expenditure.

Eligible activities must directly relate to the project and can include, but are not limited to:

  • developing work experience initiatives
  • tailored non-accredited training or professional development activities
  • training and reskilling job seekers to make their skills better suited to taking up local job opportunities
  • activities that improve access to education or training and make it easier to participate in training or education
  • mentoring and support services
  • helping unemployed displaced workers return to the workforce
  • employment pathway and internship programs that do not duplicate currently funded programs
  • hosting of employment related events, such as forums, workshops and conferences
  • working to address skills mismatch by partnering with employers and local industry
  • identifying ways to improve the operation and future capacity of the local labour market
  • other innovative employment initiatives


Eligible Applicants

The ten Regional Development Australia regions eligible for the Regional Employment Trials Program are:

StateEligible regions
New South WalesNorthern Inland

Far South Coast

VictoriaMelbourne (Western Melbourne/North Western Melbourne Employment Regions only)


QueenslandTownsville and North West (Townsville Employment Region only)

Wide Bay Burnett

South AustraliaMurraylands and Riverland

Yorke and Mid North

Western AustraliaPeel
TasmaniaTasmania (North and North Western Tasmania Employment Region only)

To be eligible you must:

  • have an Australian Business Number (ABN)
  • implement the project in one of the eligible trial regions

and be one of the following entities:

  • an entity incorporated in Australia
  • a local government agency or body
  • a Regional Development Australia committee

An entity incorporated in Australia includes companies, incorporated trustees on behalf of a trust, incorporated associations and Indigenous corporations.

To be eligible you must:

  • have at least one jobactive, ParentsNext or Transition to Work employment services provider partnering on the project, who will complete a risk assessment for the project as part of the grant agreement.
  • complete a project proposal for assessment by your local RDA committee using the template available on and GrantConnect.
  • provide evidence from your board (or chief executive officer or equivalent if there is no board) that the project is supported, and that you can complete the project and meet the costs of the project not covered by grant funding.
  • have met relevant state or territory legislation obligations related to working with children and/or vulnerable people, and ensure that any person that has direct, unsupervised contact with children or vulnerable people as part of a project under this program, has undertaken and passed a working with children/vulnerable people check, if required under relevant State or Territory legislation. You are also responsible for assessing the suitability of the people you engage as part of your project to ensure that all project participants are kept safe.



Applications open on an ongoing basis.


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