The Pacific Australia Labour Mobility (PALM) scheme allows eligible Australian businesses to hire workers from 9 Pacific islands and Timor-Leste when there are not enough local workers available.
Through the PALM scheme, employers can access both seasonal workers (up to 9 months) and longer-term workers (between one and 4 years) through a single application.
Worker wellbeing is central to the PALM scheme and employers must ensure workers are supported throughout their time in Australia.
How to become a PALM scheme employer
Your entity or business must undergo a series of eligibility checks to ensure you are reputable, financially sound and operationally able to fulfil the requirements of the scheme.
Step-by-step process for businesses to join the scheme
Step 1: Preparation
- Understand your requirements and responsibilities under the PALM scheme. Read the employer guidelines and review the relevant Deed/s of Agreement (see resources linked below).
- Review the application form to ensure you have gathered all the required information.
- Ensure you have all documents required for upload prior to completing the online application.
- Consider the appropriate accommodation, transport and allowable deductions to ensure you meet the required standards.
Step 2: Application
- Complete the application form online and upload all required documents. (You will be prompted throughout the application to complete it successfully and you can stop and save your progress at any time. Please note: if your application is incomplete, you will not be able to submit it).
Step 3: Assessment
- We assess the financial viability, operations and reputation of your business to ensure only reputable businesses engage in the PALM scheme.
- As part of this, we seek information about your business, directors or other associated entities from the Department of Home Affairs, other relevant government departments and the Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO).
- We conduct site visits and interviews.
Step 4: Approvals
- You will be notified when the assessment is completed.
- If your application is successful, you will need to become a temporary activities sponsor (TAS) through the Department of Home Affairs.
- When you advise us of your TAS details, you will be sent the Deed of Agreement for signing.
- Once this is returned and executed by the Commonwealth, you will be approved as a PALM scheme employer and can start the recruitment process.
Step 5: Recruitment and labour market testing
- Complete your recruitment application 8 weeks pre-mobilisation, including the submission of valid evidence of your labour market testing activities, to demonstrate there are no Australians available to undertake this work.
- Once all approvals are in place, you can commence recruitment activities with the relevant Pacific or Timor-Leste government labour sending unit/s.
Have questions or need advice?
If you have any queries or need help to understand the application process, please call the Pacific Labour Facility support service line (1800 51 51 31), or email (email@example.com).
|Short-term/ seasonal PALM scheme (formerly SWP)|
|DESE: SWP Online|
|SWP minimum accommodation requirements checklist|
|SWP employer guidelines|
|SWP Deed of Agreement|
|Longer-term PALM scheme (formerly PLS)|
|PLS employer guidelines|
|PLS Deed of Agreement|
|How to recruit workers through the PALM scheme|
|Australian Tax Office: PALM scheme|
|Australian Tax Office: Employers of PALM scheme workers|
|Department of Home Affairs: PALM visa stream|
|Department of Home Affairs: Entering and leaving Australia|
|FWO: PALM scheme|
|FWO: Language storyboards on Australian workplace rights and entitlements|