About the Veterans' employment pathway pilot

Australian Defence Force (ADF) members are well-regarded, with diverse and sought-after skills and experiences. Every year, approximately 5000 personnel leave the ADF with 1600 of these residing in Queensland.

The Queensland public sector (the sector) is committed to creating an inclusive and diverse workforce that brings together people with a wide range of skills, backgrounds and perspectives. Veterans, with their transferrable skills and experiences, are a unique talent pool.

The Veterans’ employment pathway pilot was conducted in 2018–19. It aimed to::

  • promote the sector as an employer of choice
  • showcase the skills and capabilities of former ADF members to hiring managers and human resource (HR) practitioners
  • increase the participation of former ADF members in the sector
  • support transition to employment within the sector.

The pilot has been successfully completed, with key elements now embedded in the sector, including ongoing employment opportunities.

Visit the Queensland Veterans’ Portal for more information about the support and opportunities provided to veterans.

Elements of the pilot’s success

Our success relied on sector-wide collaboration and focused on 5 elements:

  1. The attraction of veterans through online engagement and partnerships which highlighted the sector’s employee value proposition and positioned the sector as an employer of choice.
  2. Identifying 100 suitable sector-wide employment opportunities within a 12-month period by working with agencies to increase understanding of ADF ranks, transferable skills and how experiences gained in the ADF can translate to sector roles.
  3. The benefits of veteran employment were promoted to hiring managers and HR practitioners by highlighting the skills and value they can offer.
  4. A targeted recruitment campaign to veterans which showcased the diversity of roles and workplaces in the sector.
  5. Supporting veterans’ transition into the public sector workplaces, by providing quality new-starter experiences, connections with mentors and support.


Our approach to veteran recruitment was based on 5 actions:

  • Attraction
    • ADF partnership – promoted employment opportunities by connecting with ADF transition support organisations that help and support veterans to find employment.
    • Total Rewards – promoted the sector’s rewards and benefits package. This included flexible work arrangementshealth and wellbeing programs, competitive salary and superannuation.
    • Digital engagement – promoted new employment opportunities, and engaged with veterans, through social and digital channels and recruitment campaigns.
  • Identification
    • Suitable employment opportunities – provided hiring managers and HR practitioners with online skills, capability and rank matching tools to help identify sector employment opportunities for veterans.
  • Promotion
    • Communication campaign – promoted the skills and value veterans can offer through a sector-wide communication campaign.
    • Created online resources for hiring managers and HR practitioners – developed resources to highlight synergies between defence and public sector careers which supported and improved the employment opportunities.
  • Recruitment
    • Career events – hosted career events which enabled veterans to engage with hiring managers and HR practitioners to discuss current and future employment opportunities.
    • Online resources – developed resources to support veterans to apply for opportunities within the sector, promoted transferable skills and improved the competitiveness of applications.
    • Talent Now – provided access to the sector’s internal talent solution which increased visibility of veterans currently in the public service to hiring managers and HR practitioners.
  • Transition
    • Induction and on-boarding – provided veterans with detailed induction and continued support to ensure they were set up for career success.
    • Mentor and network programs – encouraged veterans to participate in formal and informal mentoring programs.
    • Employee assistance – provided veterans with free, professional and confidential employee support services.

Working together

The Veterans’ employment pathway pilot supported veterans in gaining employment in the sector. Success relied on shared commitment from:


The Leadership Board with the support of the Strategic Workforce Council (SWC), championed veterans’ employment within agencies as a business priority. This included agency participation in sector-wide recruitment campaigns.


Individual agencies:

  • considered veteran attraction, recruitment, development and retention in workforce planning and inclusion and diversity initiatives
  • identified suitable employment opportunities for veterans
  • participated in sector-wide recruitment campaigns.

Public Service Commission

The Public Service Commission:

  • established partnerships with veteran support and advocacy organisations to ensure initiatives and activities met veterans’ needs
  • assisted agencies to identify suitable employment opportunities for veterans, and monitored and reported outcomes to the Leadership Board
  • coordinated recruitment campaign/s, which highlighted employment opportunities for veterans
  • provided online resources to support veterans’ employment in the sector
  • reviewed the pathway, in consultation with SWC to ensure it continued to meet the needs of hiring managers and HR leads.

Measuring success

We were successful when we:

  • identified at least over 100 suitable sector-wide employment opportunities
  • delivered recruitment campaigns targeting veterans and provided online resources which helped veterans match their skills with available roles in the sector; and
  • received job applications from veterans (via SmartJobs) and appointed veterans to roles within the sector.