Job seeker programs

Construction worker wearing yellow hardhat  


Discover programs, services and grant opportunities to support job seekers and businesses in Yarra.

Adult Migrant Education Program (AMEP)

A free service to help eligible migrants with low English levels to improve their English language skills. Classes assist people with skills to work, as well as improve their understanding of Australian community life.

Free childcare is available for people participating in face to face AMEP classes for children who are under school age.

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Australian JobSearch

The Australian JobSearch website provides a no cost platform for employers to advertise vacancies. Employment Service Providers can also utilise the platform to advertise employer vacancies that can be accessed for job seeker referrals by other providers.

Job seekers can also link their MyGov accounts with the platform to create career profiles and upload resumes viewable by prospective employers. Additionally, the website includes a range of career planning resources and links together with tips and techniques on job searches, applications and interviews.

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Big Build Apprenticeships (BBA)

BBA will see up to 1500 apprentices and trainees a year work across Victoria’s major infrastructure projects whilst receiving the training they need to establish their career.

The program will initially link apprentices and trainees onto the North East Link and the new Footscray Hospital projects, with an expansion onto other major projects over time.

Job seekers can register their interest to be part of the BBA on the Apprenticeships Victoria website.

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Boosting Apprenticeship Commencements

The Boosting Apprenticeship Commencements wage subsidy supports businesses and group training organisations (GTOs) to take on new apprentices and trainees, to build a pipeline of skilled workers to support sustained economic recovery.

Through the subsidy, any business or GTO that engages an Australian apprentice between 5 October 2020 and 30 September 2021 may be eligible for a subsidy of 50 per cent of wages paid to a new or recommencing apprentice or trainee for a 12-month period from the date of commencement to a maximum of $7,000 per quarter. There is no cap on the number of eligible trainees/apprentices.

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Business Recovery and Resilience Mentoring

The program is available for eligible business owners in Victoria. Businesses can receive up to four 2-hour sessions with a mentor who will help them make informed decisions about the future of their business including tailored guidance on:

  • Business recovery
  • Market transformation
  • Digital literacy
  • Market and supply chain diversification
  • Reskilling and retraining

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Career Transition Assistance

Career Transition Assistance (CTA) is for jobactive participants aged 45 and older. The program is designed to help participants build their confidence and skills to become more competitive in their local labour market.

Supports include:

  • Identifying transferable skills and available local job opportunities, and to tailor applications based on their skills and experience.
  • Practical digital skills using different types of technology and how to apply for jobs online.

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Free TAFE courses

Free TAFE for priority courses have been introduced state-wide to reduce the financial barrier for students wanting to train in courses that lead to jobs in demand from Victorian employers.

Free TAFE courses include:

  • 45 priority non-apprenticeship courses, within the accounting, ageing support, agriculture, allied health, building and construction, nursing, cyber security, civil construction, community services, dental and disability, engineering, rail, tourism and youth work sectors.
  • 20 Victorian apprenticeship pathway courses (sometimes called pre-apprenticeships) including automotive, baking, building and construction, electrical, engineering, furniture, horticulture, meat processing, plumbing, printing, production nursery, salon assistant and signs and graphics.

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Head Start

The aim is to increase the number of students in schools undertaking high quality apprenticeships and traineeships while still completing their senior secondary studies through flexible arrangements. Head Start will deliver an estimated 1,700 apprenticeships and traineeships in over 100 secondary schools in ten locations across Victoria.

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Job Trainer

The Australian Government is providing free or low-fee training courses across the nation. The Australian Government has partnered with state governments to establish a new $1 billion JobTrainer Fund.

The JobTrainer Fund will provide up to 340,700 additional training places that are free or low fee, in areas of identified skills need such as health, aged and disability care, IT and trades for job seekers and young people, including school leavers.

JobTrainer funding is available for accredited diplomas, certificates or short courses, based on a list agreed between the National Skills Commission and the state and territory governments. Courses for Victoria are expected to be made available in early 2021.

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jobactive is an Australian Government initiative delivered by a national network of organisations dedicated to getting more Australians into work. It connects job seekers with employers and is delivered by a network of jobactive providers in over 1700 locations across Australia.

jobactive providers can help job seekers with writing a résumé, looking for work, preparing for interviews, getting skills that local employers need, and finding and keeping a job.

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JobMaker Hiring Credits

On 6 October 2020 as part of the 2020–21 Budget, the Australian Government announced a new incentive for businesses to employ additional young job seekers called the JobMaker Hiring Credit.

Eligible employers can access the JobMaker Hiring Credit for each new job they create over the 12 months from 7 October 2020, for which they hire an eligible employee, for a maximum claim period of 12 months from their employment start date.

Employers can claim payments from us in arrears since 1 February 2021.

The JobMaker Hiring Credit is:

  • $200 per week for each eligible employee aged 16 to 29.
  • $100 per week for each eligible employee aged 30 to 35.

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Jobs for Youth Jobs Search

The Jobs for Youth Job Search is a jobs board connecting youth with employment opportunities in Melbourne’s Inner North. 

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Jobs Hub

The Jobs Hub is supporting job seekers and employers to connect in a rapidly changing job market. It is a website that allows people to find employers hiring as well as a range of useful websites and information to help people get a job. 

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Jobs Victoria Advocates

Jobs Victoria Advocates will support jobseekers in their communities. Advocates will assist Victorians who need help with finding work, or who are struggling with the impact of unemployment, to find the information, advice and additional support they need.

Advocates will connect with people in libraries, community centres, public housing foyers, shopping centres, other community services and may also go to people’s homes in some locations to ensure everyone is aware of support available.

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Jobs Victoria Employment Network (JVEN)

The Jobs Victoria Employment Network (JVEN) is the Victorian Government program helping Victorians who face barriers to employment into jobs.

Jobs Victoria Employment Network services are open to jobseekers who are either:

  • long-term unemployed (6 months plus), or
  • at risk of long-term unemployment due to employment barriers and who lack adequate support through other services.

The network is made up of Jobs Victoria Partners who are employment specialists. Partners support jobseekers to get job-ready and work closely with employers to help them plan their recruitment and connect them with local candidates.  The service is focused on addressing the gaps in and complementing existing services, including Commonwealth services. 

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Jobs Victoria Fund

The Jobs Victoria Fund is a wage subsidy program that supports businesses to hire people whose employment has been most affected by the pandemic.

Victorian small and medium-sized businesses, sole traders, local councils, social enterprises, universities and not-for-profits are invited to apply for a share of $250 million in wage subsidies to create new jobs for at least 10,000 people.

The Fund will help Victorian businesses and organisations to rebuild and grow by providing a wage subsidy of up to $20,000 per eligible employee to meet the costs of taking on new workers for the first 12 months of their employment.

The fund is focusing on women, women aged 45 and over, youth, unemployed >6months, ATSI, asylum seekers, disabled.

Employers looking for more information on the Jobs Victoria Fund can call the Jobs Victoria hotline on 1300 208 575.

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Jobs Victoria Online Platform

The Jobs Victoria platform is an initiative that helps Victorian job seekers find work and employers find workers. The Jobs Victoria team can provide support to businesses who require assistance to develop their job advertisements. 

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Launch into Work Program

The Launch into Work program delivers pre-employment projects that provide training, work experience and mentoring to support job seekers to increase their skills, experience and confidence and move into employment. Projects are intended to train job seekers for specific roles within the organisation and may be conducted in a variety of industries.
Launch into Work is primarily focused on creating long-term employment pathways for women. However, men may also be able to participate in the program, in particular for projects targeting non-traditional roles.

Projects are co-designed with employers, employment service providers, registered training organisations and other stakeholders to ensure both employer and job seeker needs are met. All pre-employment projects must include:

  • Accredited and non-accredited training, tailored to the positions and/or sector that the project relates to:
    • Work experience
    • Participant mentoring, and
    • Employment for suitable job seekers who successfully complete the pre-employment project.

Project duration is typically between 4 and 12 weeks.

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Mandatory Work Placement Program

The AEN is working with the Department of Education and Training (DET), Victoria’s TAFE network and Learn Local Registered Training Organisations (RTOs) to assist students who have faced difficulties accessing mandatory work placements due to COVID-19.

The AEN will work with Health and Community Service employers to identify new placement opportunities for students who have completed the theory component of accredited training in one of the below disciplines. The work placement component will enable them to finalise the completion of qualification and become a pipeline of new workers for the sector. AEN will work with employers and local TAFEs to match students to new placements.

The program is open to employers in the following disciplines:

  • Aged Care
  • Early Childhood Education and Care
  • Disability Services
  • Education Support
  • Individual Support
  • Nursing
  • Mental Health
  • Community Services
  • Allied Health
  • Pathology

You can express interest in hosting a student via the below link and you will be contacted by a work placement officer.

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National Work Experience Program (NWEP)

The National Work Experience Program (NWEP) is a work experience program for job seekers aged 17 years or over.

Job ready participants undertake real life unpaid work experience placements to gain experience and confidence while demonstrating their skills to employers. NWEP Placements should have a likelihood of paid employment at the completion of the placement.

Host businesses are eligible for a one-off, upfront incentive payment of $300 (GST inclusive) per placement to assist with hosting costs.

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New Enterprise Incentive Scheme (NEIS)

People interested in starting their own business or existing micro-business owners who need help to refocus their business during COVID-19 may be eligible for New Business Assistance with NEIS.

New Business Assistance with NEIS can help by providing:

  • Accredited small business training
  • Personalised mentoring and support from a NEIS provider
  • NEIS Allowance for up to 39 weeks and NEIS Rental Assistance for up to 26 weeks (if eligible).

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Online Employment Services 

Online Employment Services (OES) are the Australian Government’s mainstream online employment servicing platform on the jobactive website.

It was created in April 2020 in response to the increased demand for Centrelink payments and employment services due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Jobseekers accessing OES are deemed job ready and suffered job losses because of COVID-19.

OES allows job seekers to manage their job search and reporting requirements online. People in OES can be referred to a jobactive provider either by calling the Digital Services Contact Centre or through their Dashboard.

The Local Jobs Program (LJP) can market employment activities and opportunities directly to the OES job seekers – for more information contact your LJP Employment Facilitator.

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ParentsNext providers work with parents and carers to help build confidence, develop skills, and access local support and services to plan for the future.

Parents and carers do not need to start looking for a job while in the program but taking part in ParentsNext will put them in a better position to act on opportunities when the time is right. ParentsNext participants will typically transition to jobactive services once their youngest child reaches school age.

Support through ParentsNext might include:

  • Help with finding a training course or work experience.
  • Help with accessing childcare and parent support networks.
  • Connecting with local services including domestic and family violence, financial counselling, and emotional support.
  • Help with writing a resume, job searches, applications, and interview practice.

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Retrenched Apprentices and Trainees Program

The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has seen a sharp reduction in apprenticeship and traineeship employment. The Retrenched Apprentices and Trainees Program has been created in response to this challenge. The program aims to assist apprentices and trainees who have lost their employment complete their training.

The Department of Education and Training (DET) has commissioned Apprenticeship Employment Network (AEN) Victoria, the peak body for group training employers, to develop and administer the program.

Apprentices and trainees who have lost their employment are encouraged to register through the AEN website. Once on the register, apprentices and trainees will be assisted by program officers until placed with a host employer through a Group Training Organisation (GTO) or directly with an employer.

Program officers will also help direct you to the most appropriate advice and assistance while you remain out of employment.

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SARA Financial Capability Training

The SARA financial capability training course aims to support women to build confidence, knowledge, and skills around managing their money to achieve financial wellbeing and financial dignity and is funded by the Victorian government. The pilot ran in 2019 and we have adapted the course to be delivered again in 2021. The course is funded through the Department of Education and Training and will be delivered through the Learn Local Network.

This course is open to any woman who wants to build their knowledge, skills, and confidence around managing their money.

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Skills & Job Centres

Jobs and Skills Centres provide advice and assistance to support employers, business owners and job seekers.  They are based in TAFES and locally focused, working within their region.

They provide expert advice on training and employment opportunities, including:

  • Recruitment and training assistance for businesses
  • Careers advice, job searching and resume writing
  • Apprenticeship and traineeship advice
  • Assistance using the Victorian Skills Gateway
  • Referral to welfare support and financial advice
  • Information on employment trends, areas with a shortage in skills and employment opportunities.
  • Assistance with career and training plans, identifying training qualifications that could be undertaken to make a successful career transition.

The Centres also engage with a broad range of local industries, ensuring that the centres are tailored to meet the needs of their local communities and industries.

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Skills First Funding

The Victorian Government through the Dept of Education and Training contracts TAFEs and other training provider’s to deliver government-subsidised training to eligible individuals under the Skills First program.

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Skills First Skill Sets

Skills First Skill Sets are a new accredited short course (skill set) offering under Skills First to provide flexible, rapid training to respond to skills shortages and workforce demands.

Skill sets play a valuable role in re-skilling and upskilling through:

  • Addressing a skills or knowledge gap – e.g. where employers need additional staff with an essential skill, and it is possible to train that skill in a short period of time; and/or
  • Addressing an emerging skills or knowledge need – e.g. where a changing industry context requires new workforce skills in a short timeframe.

Eligible students may start up to two skill sets per calendar year* and are able to undertake a maximum of two Skills First courses at any given time, e.g. one skill set and one full qualification. Access is subject to overall caps on the availability of places.

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Skills Road

Skills Road is a website connecting job seekers to employers.  It provides a range of information and resources for job seekers, parents and careers teachers around career planning and training and study options.

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Structured Workplace Learning Portal

Most schools offer a range of opportunities for students to engage with the world of work. This might involve spending time in a workplace, participating in school-community work, or in paid part-time employment. Employers can get involved by providing work experience, structured workplace learning or school-based apprenticeships and traineeships. Offering placements provides the opportunity to raise awareness of your workplace and find future employees.

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Transition to work

Transition to Work (TtW) supports young people aged 15-24 on their journey to employment. The service provides intensive, pre-employment support to improve the work-readiness of young people and help them into work (including apprenticeships and traineeships) or education. To achieve this, providers will help young people:

  • Develop practical skills to get a job
  • Connect with education or training
  • Find and complete work experience placements
  • Find job opportunities in the local area
  • Connect with relevant local community services.

Participants may be referred to TtW by Centrelink when registering for income support, or via referral from a jobactive provider for an existing participant. TtW providers can also directly register participants from the community who are not otherwise engaged with employment services. Employers may be eligible for a Youth Bonus wage subsidy up to $10,000 when they hire a TtW Participant.

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Victorian Apprenticeship Recovery Package (VARP)

The Victorian Apprenticeship Recovery Package (VARP) is funded by the Victorian Government to a total of $9 million and will follow the criteria of the Youth Employment Scheme (YES) and offers young people paid work experience in the Victorian Public Service/agencies or local government.

The program provides 300 young people aged 15 to 24 with an opportunity to work for a minimum of 12 months while completing an accredited traineeship or apprenticeship.  Wage subsidies are available to a maximum value of $30,000 inclusive of GST per placement (excluding any other government funded incentives). VARP aims to increase the participation of disadvantaged young people in the workforce, while assisting communities to meet future skill and employment needs.

This program will be available to Victorian State and Local government departments and agencies.

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Victorian Skills Gateway

Resources for prospective students, job seekers, career advisors, parents, employers and RTOs to explore the vocational education and training options offered by TAFE and training providers.

The courses listed on the Victorian Skills Gateway website are either regulated qualifications under the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF), or short accredited training courses comprising units of competency from regulated qualifications.

All training providers listed on the Victorian Skills Gateway are registered under the Australian Skills Quality Authority (ASQA) or the Victorian Registration and Qualifications Authority (VRQA).

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Wage Subsidies

Wage subsidies up to $10,000 (GST inclusive) may be available to Australian businesses hiring employment services participants in ongoing jobs.

Employment services providers determine if a wage subsidy is offered and will enter into an agreement with the employer to make payments over six months. A range of eligibility conditions apply. Employment services are best placed to assess the needs of Participants and Employers and provide advice on how to access wage subsidies.

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Work and Learning Centres

Work and Learning Centres provide personalised support and services for each jobseeker.

Jobseekers have access to:

  • Career guidance and job service training
  • Vocational training with local providers
  • Foundation skill courses to improve work readiness
  • Work opportunities through links with local employers
  • Support services to address other barriers to employment such as health and mental health services, drug and alcohol support and childcare.

The centres also take referrals from local services, health professionals and department staff.

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Youth Employment Scheme

The Youth Employment Scheme (YES) provides young people aged 15 to 24 with an opportunity to work in the Victorian Public Service for 12 months while completing accredited training.

YES aims to increase the participation of young people in the workforce, while assisting communities to meet future skill and employment needs.

The program:

  • Offers 12-month entry-level traineeship positions in the Victorian Public Service
  • Provides accredited training
  • Helps young people to gain paid work experience, qualifications and training that lead to sustainable employment.

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Youth Jobs PaTH

Prepare - Employability Skills Training (EST)

EST helps young people understand what employers expect in the workplace. 75 hours of training is delivered over three weeks, with two course types:

  • The first course focuses on job preparation and job-hunting skills.
  • The second course focuses on workplace skills and knowledge aligned to industry sectors

EST is delivered by RTOs contracted by the department for the program, with job seeker referrals generated by jobactive providers.

Trial - PaTH Internships

A Youth Jobs PaTH internship is a voluntary structured work trial placement. It is an opportunity for participants to demonstrate their skills to the host business. A PaTH internship runs for between four and 12 weeks and must have a reasonable prospect of converting to ongoing employment.

Participants receive an incentive payment of $200 per fortnight on top of their regular income support payment.

Host businesses receive an upfront incentive of $1,000 to help cover the costs of training and supervision.

Hire - Youth Bonus Wage Subsidy

The wage subsidy provides up to $10,000 (GST inclusive) over six months to employers who hire eligible young job seekers 15–24 years of age in ongoing employment.

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