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There are a number of eligibility requirements for employers interested in recruiting workers from Pacific island countries and Timor-Leste for unskilled, low-skilled, and semi-skilled positions through the Pacific Australia Labour Mobility (PALM) scheme.

Pacific worker on tractor

What do you need to become a PALM scheme employer?

To be eligible to join the PALM scheme, you will need to demonstrate that you:

  • are an eligible business registered and operating in Australia
  • are NOT an individual, sole trader or unincorporated company.

In addition, you must meet a set of eligibility criteria to ensure you are able to fulfil the requirements of the scheme. The full list of criteria is found on the employer application form.

Eligible industries

The Australian Government has committed to expand and improve the PALM scheme and is developing a robust approach to assess the feasibility and risks of recruiting workers in new sectors for which PALM scheme workers have not historically been recruited, that is, outside of agriculture, meat processing, aged care, hospitality and tourism. Over the coming months, the government will consider expanding further into new sectors, and in sectors with small numbers of workers.

Where are you based?

Eligibility for employers seeking to recruit through the PALM scheme is based on rural and regional postcodes, except for employers in the agriculture and select agriculture-related food product manufacturing sectors, where there are no postcode restrictions. Employers in meat, seafood, fruit and vegetable processing sectors may recruit workers to fill positions based in metropolitan areas.

Eligible postcodes for all sectors (all postcodes in Australia are eligible for agriculture and select agriculture-related food product manufacturing sectors)
Australian Capital TerritoryAll postcodes in the Australian Capital Territory
New South Wales (excluding Sydney, Newcastle and Wollongong metropolitan areas)2250 to 2251, 2256 to 2263, 2311 to 2312, 2328 to 2411, 2415, 2420 to 2490, 2536 to 2551, 2575 to 2594, 2618 to 2739, 2787 to 2898
Norfolk IslandAll postcodes in Norfolk Island
Northern TerritoryAll postcodes in the Northern Territory
Queensland (excluding Brisbane and Gold Coast metropolitan areas)4124 to 4125, 4133, 4211, 4270 to 4272, 4275, 4280, 4285, 4287, 4307 to 4499, 4515, 4517 to 4519, 4522 to 4899
South AustraliaAll postcodes in South Australia
TasmaniaAll postcodes in Tasmania
Victoria (excluding the Melbourne metropolitan area)3211 to 3334, 3340 to 3424, 3430 to 3649, 3658 to 3749, 3753, 3756, 3758, 3762, 3764, 3778 to 3781, 3783, 3797, 3799, 3816 to 3909, 3921 to 3925, 3945 to 3974, 3979, 3981 to 3996
Western Australia (excluding the Perth metropolitan area)6041 to 6044, 6083 to 6084, 6121 to 6126, 6161, 6200 to 6799


Apply to become a PALM scheme employer

If you have checked your eligibility and want to become a PALM scheme approved employer, you can fill out an online application form.

You can also read an information-only version of the form before you start: Employer application form - reference only.

Other Australian Government employment services

While the PALM scheme is a highly valued program that is helping Australian businesses address workforce shortages, it should not be treated as a single solution to meeting the workforce needs of any sector.

Employers and potential hosts operating in locations outside current eligible PALM scheme postcodes are encouraged to use other available employment services to assist with their employment needs. This includes the Local Jobs Program and Workforce Australia, delivered by the Department of Employment and Workplace Relations.

Employers operating in the horticulture industry in a PALM scheme postcode that is also identified as a Harvest Area can use Harvest Trail services, a free specialised job placement service that links workers (both working holiday makers and Australian job seekers) with seasonal harvest jobs.