Update - Grant opportunity guidelines

The grant opportunity guidelines were updated on 4 April 2022 to include an additional $20.3 million in funding until March 2026.

Applicants can apply under the new guidelines from Thursday 7 April 2022.

Skilling Australia's Defence Industry Grants Program 

Skilling Australia’s Defence Industry Grants provide businesses servicing the defence sector with upskilling and training opportunities to build skills capacity and capability to meet current or future Defence needs.

What do you get?

A grant between $5,000 and $500,000 to undertake various defence skills training activities.

You may apply for multiple grants or group multiple eligible activities into one application.

The funding is capped at $500,000 in a six-year period from 2020–21 to 2025–26 for:

  • each eligible business; and
  • each industry association which is applying for funding to train their own staff.

Who is this for?

  • Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) that currently have a Defence contract, are tendering for one, are a subcontractor to a defence prime or contracted through the Prime's supply chain to deliver on defence projects.
  • Defence Industry Associations training their own staff or facilitating training to businesses they are representing.
  • Defence Industry Associations applying for funding for eligible activities for the eligible businesses they are representing.


The Skilling Australia’s Defence Industry Grants Program will provide grants to businesses over three years to help develop defence sector skills and human resources practices and training plans.

The program aims to:

  • reduce barriers faced by Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in the defence sector when upskilling or retraining staff
  • develop skills within SMEs in the defence sector
  • support SMEs in the defence sector to establish human resources practices and training plans that will build lifelong learning activities into their business


What are the eligibility criteria?

To be eligible you must:

  • have an Australian Business Number (ABN)
  • be non-income tax exempt (unless you are a defence industry association training your own staff or facilitating training to businesses you are representing).

and be one of the following entities:

  • an entity, incorporated in Australia
  • an incorporated trustee on behalf of a trust.

We can only accept applications from:

  • SMEs with less than 200 employees that currently service, or intend to service, the defence industry sector and meet one of the following requirements:
    • have a current Defence contract
    • be currently tendering or preparing to tender for a Defence contract
    • be a current subcontractor to a Defence prime or contracted through the Prime's supply chain to deliver on Defence projects.
  • Defence industry associations applying:
    • for training their own staff; or
    • to facilitate eligible activities for businesses they are representing:
      • where the represented business fulfils the eligibility criteria;
      • the represented business provides consent for the application; and
      • the value of the project apportioned to the business does not exceed the represented business’s funding cap available to the business under the SADI program.

You are not eligible to apply if you are:

  • an organisation, or your project partner is an organisation, included on the National Redress Scheme’s website on the list of ‘Institutions that have not joined or signified their intent to join the Scheme’
  • income tax exempt (unless you are a defence industry association training your own staff or facilitating training to businesses you are representing)
  • an individual
  • a partnership
  • a trust (however, an incorporated trustee may apply on behalf of a trust)
  • a Commonwealth, State, Territory or local government body (including government business enterprises)
  • a non-corporate Commonwealth entity.


How do you apply?

You should read the grant opportunity guidelines and sample grant agreement before you apply.

To apply, you must submit your application through the online portal. You’ll need to set up an account when you first log into the portal. The portal allows you to apply for and manage a grant or service in a secure online environment.

Check if you’re ready to apply for a grant

Finding a suitable grant opportunity is just the start of the process to get funding. The application process can take time and effort. Understanding the entire process will help you be grant ready and may improve your chances of getting funding.

Use our checklist to find out what it takes to apply for a grant.

Apply now for Skilling Australia’s Defence Industry Grants Program

Before you apply, make sure you:

  • read the guidelines
  • read the sample application form
  • read the key documents
  • meet the eligibility criteria
Apply Now

We assess your application against the eligibility criteria and then against the assessment criteria. Only eligible applications will proceed to the assessment stage.

The amount of detail and supporting evidence you provide in your application should be relative to the project size, complexity and grant amount requested. You should define, quantify and provide evidence to support your answers. The sample application form displays character limits.

The program delegate will make the final decision.

You must address all assessment criteria in your application. We will assess your application based on the weighting given to each criterion.

  • Assessment criterion 1: How your project improves the capacity and capability of your business to service the defence industry sector (40 points)
  • Assessment criterion 2: Your capacity, capability and resources to deliver the project (30 points)
  • Assessment criterion 3: Impact of grant funding on your project (30 points)

If your application is successful, you'll receive a written offer. If you are unsuccessful, we'll notify you in writing and give you the chance to discuss the outcome with us.

Successful applicants must enter into a grant agreement with the Commonwealth. The grant agreement will specify the reporting requirements, payment schedule and milestones necessary to receive payments.

We will make payments according to an agreed schedule set out in the grant agreement. Payments are subject to satisfactory progress on the project.

Grant funds will be paid into your nominated bank account.

Need help?

Let us answer your question via phone, email or live chat. And if we can't help, we'll put you in touch with someone who can.

  • Phone:
  • Open Hours:
    Monday – Friday, 8am – 8pm across Australia
  • Website:

Key documents

Grant opportunity guidelines

pdf · 0.61 MB docx · 0.16 MB

Sample grant agreement - simple

pdf · 0.80 MB docx · 0.15 MB

Sample application form

pdf · 0.85 MB docx · 0.13 MB

Application budget tool

xlsm · 1.46 MB

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