Skills First for industry

Skills First gives a real voice for industry in training. It will be managed through a refined funded course list that focuses on current and future workforce industry skills needs in demand.

Extensive regional and industry consultations facilitated by the Victorian Skills Commissioner found that a significant number of Government-funded courses in 2016, did not meet industry or community needs.

To address this issue, the new funded course list was introduced. The new funded course list:

Training to meet industry skills needs
  • better aligns with industry needs and workforce demands
  • represents Government priorities, including rolling out the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS), responding to family violence, and completing Victoria’s infrastructure projects
  • has a strong jobs outcome, such as apprenticeships
  • meets other social needs, such as foundation skill courses.

See the funded course list for the latest subsidy information.

Industry at the forefront

a man sits in front of a computerUnder Skills First, there is an even stronger link with industry.

Through substantial consultation during the Mackenzie Review, through the work of the Victorian Skills Commissioner and surveys of over 100,000 employers, the Government understands what industry needs, what is working and what isn’t. The Government will continue to survey employers and consult with industry to ensure that we are deliving what industry needs to drive our economy.

The Workforce Training Innovation Fund fosters partnerships between industry, TAFEs and other training providers to work together to drive innovative collaboration through new qualifications, approaches to the delivery of training and curricula.

Securing regional jobs

a woman inspects a plantRegional industries benefit from locally trained workers. In many areas, there are not enough students to run viable training. Skills First will introduce targeted funding for regional and niche markets through the new Regional and Specialist Training fund.

A clear voice for industry

two men inspect equiptmentVictorian Skills Commissioner, Neil Coulson, was appointed by the Victorian Government to work with industry, employers, union and government to ensure Victorians get the skills industry needs. Supported by the Commissioner, the Government has established a $14 million Industry Engagement Framework. The framework is a critical input into Skills First and comprises of:

Industry Advisory Groups (IAGs)

Ten IAGs have been established covering industries ranging from construction and health, to resources and manufacturing.

They consist of representatives of industry, unions and employers.

IAGs provide advice to the VSC on matters including skill demand pressures and future industry skills needs.

Regional Skills Taskforces

Taskforces ensure that regional skill and location based demands are addressed. Regional Skills Taskforces have been established to capture intelligence and advice about the unique labour needs of Victoria’s regions.

Industry Skills Taskforces

Industry Skills Taskforces are for a time-limited period and ensure that Government has the necessary information to respond to emerging issues within the training and TAFE system and economy.

Further information

For more information see the Victorian Skills Commissioner's website.

Industry case studies

Fact sheets

Employer satisfaction and skills survey

The Victorian employer satisfaction and skills survey is an annual survey that collects information from employers on the training experiences of apprentice(s)/trainee(s), and about the training and skills needs of Victorian businesses.

For more information, email:

Further information

For information on how Skills First will benefit industry, email: