About the Job

As an ICT Specialist in the Army Signals team, you'll operate at the forefront of the IT and communications industry.

ICT Specialists provide effective communication over large distances, ensuring the Army is always connected. In this hands-on position, you'll manage, maintain and plan advanced military systems and networks. As part of your training, you'll be taught how to set up radio systems, information systems and satellite terminals

No prior experience is required - you'll learn everything you need to know to work with high-tech military communications equipment. Through world-class training, you will gain a highly desirable skillset to set you up for a future career in the military and beyond.

If you're a proactive thinker, can work efficiently and have the ability to support your colleagues in high-pressure situations, you'll thrive as an ICT Specialist.

The ICT Specialist pathway will provide you with the skills to advance in one of three roles:

  • Information Systems Technician - learn to build and maintain data networks, through installation and management of high-tech military software and hardware.
  • Communication Systems Operator - learn to operate and manage radios and advanced equipment to establish communications networks that are crucial to the success of Army operations.
  • Telecommunications Technician - learn to install and maintain satellite terminals and advanced networks in a hands-on role at the forefront of the ICT industry.

You'll be streamed into a specialist role as you progress through training. Allocation to a specific role is not guaranteed - it's based on your preference, existing qualifications, performance and availability of positions.

Whichever role you take on, you'll build a unique skillset and work with various units across the Australian Defence Force. Your scenery will vary, from an office environment to out in the field - you'll always be amongst the action. ICT Specialists have the opportunity to embed within combat teams and Special Forces, travel across Australia and potentially deploy on military and disaster relief operations across the world.

Key Information

Preparing for Your Recruitment Process

This document provides information that will assist applicants for roles in the Navy, Army and Air Force, including details about the recruitment process, how to prepare yourself for assessment, and what to expect if you are successful in joining the Australian Defence Force.

National Qualifications

Aspects of your training throughout your career may result in the award of civil qualifications. Areas of specialisation offer different training opportunities. Check with your Instructional Staff when you conduct your Initial Employment Training course.

If you are selected to specialise as a Telecommunications Technician, elements of your Initial Employment Training will result in award of civil qualifications. These include the ICT30519 Certificate III in Telecommunications Technology and becoming a registered cabler under the Australian Communications and Media Authority customer cabling regulatory requirements. The Open Cabler Registration licence includes cabling endorsements in structured/Cat 5/Cat 6, optical fibre, coaxial, underground and aerial cabling specialisations. Further details can be found at http://training.gov.au.

Salary & Allowances

In the Army you'll get paid a good salary from day one regardless of your age, experience or qualifications; and your pay increases as you progress through training.

In addition to your salary you'll receive a variety of allowances, extra pay for relevant qualifications – plus 16.4% superannuation, a far higher rate than you're likely to find in the civilian world.

For more details download our Salary Scales.


ICT Specialists are employed in all Signals units and in a number of specialist units throughout Australia. Main posting locations include:

  • Melbourne, VIC
  • Sydney, NSW
  • Darwin, NT
  • Brisbane, QLD
  • Townsville, QLD

You may also have the opportunity to deploy overseas on operations during your career.



Applicants must be at least 17 years of age and able to complete the Initial Minimum Period of Service before reaching Compulsory Retirement Age (60).

Applicants will not be allowed to enter the ADF until they achieve a minimum of 17 years of age, however they may be able to initiate the application process from 16 years and six months of age.

Education & Experience

Completion of Australian Year 10 education (or equivalent) with passes in English and Mathematics.

If you have not achieved the appropriate passes for this role, an education assessment can be conducted to determine your eligibility. Employment history and other qualifications will be considered. Speak to your ADF Careers Centre representative to discuss options.

Medical & Fitness

To be enlisted or appointed, you must be medically and physically fit for entry to your chosen occupation. This is partially assessed from the completion of an extensive questionnaire covering your medical history, followed by a physical examination.

You will also be required to successfully pass a physical fitness assessment before appointment.

For further details on medical and physical fitness standards refer to Physical Fitness Standards for Entry into the ADF and Medical Process for Entry into the ADF

Period of Service

You will be enlisted for an Initial Minimum Period of Service (IMPS) of four years. Subsequent periods of service may be offered subject to the requirements of the ADF and your suitability for further service. You may request discharge at any time provided you do not have an outstanding Initial Minimum Period of Service obligation.

Your Careers Coach can advise on how IMPS will relate to your chosen occupation.


The Job Opportunities Assessment (JOA) is completed as part of the application process to join the Australian Defence Force (ADF). Some jobs may also require you to complete a further evaluation at a later date.

The JOA is used by Defence to establish suitability for ADF entry, and then identify jobs that best match your abilities.

Further information about the JOA can be found in the Guide to the Job Opportunities Assessment for the ADF.

To get a feel for the types of questions that are used in the Job Opportunities Assessment and how they will look on your screen some examples can be found in the Job Opportunities Assessment Example Questions.


To serve in the ADF you must be an Australian Citizen.

If you are a permanent resident of Australia, the ADF may consider a temporary deferral of the citizenship requirement if the position for which you are applying cannot be filled by an applicant who meets all the citizenship requirements, and then only in exceptional circumstances. You will be required to obtain Australian Citizenship as early as possible following enlistment or appointment.

Find out more in our Citizenship page or ask your local ADF Careers Centre.

Security Requirements

The Department of Defence requires ADF employees to have a security clearance appropriate to their employment.

A process of background checks, collection of relevant information and if required, interviews, enables the Australian Government Security Vetting Agency (AGSVA) to make an informed assessment of an applicant's suitability for a security clearance.

The minimum security clearance level required is Negative Vetting Level 1 (NV1), and current policy requires applicants to have a checkable background for the previous 10 years.

This means applicants must provide credible referees (non-family members) who are able to provide information about the applicant covering an extended period of time. Required information for an NV1 includes, but is not limited to, the following:

  • Residence
  • Employment
  • Education
  • Financial information
  • Travel

Some ADF jobs may require a higher level of security clearance such as Negative Vetting Level 2 (NV2) or Positive Vetting (PV). Your individual circumstances will determine the number and complexity of the questions and the supporting documents required for these levels.

Australian Citizenship is a requirement for a security clearance and a clearance will only be granted to a non-citizen in exceptional circumstances.

The security clearance is critical to an applicant's successful progression through the recruiting process. It is strongly recommended that all applicants action the Security Clearance Package (ePack) and provide the required documentation without delay to provide the best opportunity to commence training and be employed in their preferred employment category.

For more detailed information on the security vetting process and specific clearance level requirements set by AGSVA, please refer to the AGSVA website.

Support will be provided by DFR during the initial application process.


Military Training

As a General Entry recruit, you’ll be required to complete the Recruit Course.

Army Recruit Course
Duration: Approximately 12 weeks.
Location: Kapooka, Wagga Wagga, NSW.

During training, you will take part in physical training, weapon handling and shooting, first aid, drill and field craft. You'll be challenged both mentally and physically.

Although it can be demanding, most recruits gain a sense of achievement, purpose and confidence during basic training, and on completion of the course feel justifiably proud of what they have achieved. The priority of our instructors is to help you succeed.

For more information, visit Soldier Training at Kapooka.

Employment Training

As an ICT Specialist you will conduct your communications training at the Defence Force School of Signals (DFSS) at Macleod, VIC. You won't find technical and communication schools with a better teacher/student ratio or better equipment and facilities. DFSS is dedicated to giving you the best technical and communications training possible.

Unlike any other school of its kind, you will be paid while you learn and are guaranteed a job when you graduate. In addition to your trade training courses, you will continue to develop your military skills which will allow you to be an Army soldier as well as an ICT Specialist. This will allow to you attain the technical skills you need as well as develop your ability to work in diverse teams, understand tactical considerations of deploying communications networks in a variety of field environments and give you the opportunity to fulfil a range of leadership positions.

Common Signals Training
Location: Defence Force School of Signals, Simpson Barracks Macleod, VIC.
Duration: 54 Days

This course provides foundation knowledge of Corps history along with the roles and the basic skills to operate common in-service Communication, Information Systems and Electronic Warfare (CISEW) equipment. This course also serves to qualify graduates as basic combat communicators, operate basic in-service power generation equipment and progress to subsequent courses.

Upon completion of Common Signals Training and depending on your specialist role, you will undertake one of the following courses. 
Location: All training courses are conducted at the Defence Force School of Signals (DFSS), Simpson Barracks Macleod, Victoria.

It should be noted that there might be periods of time between courses conducted at DFSS. Should this occur, you will be provided with both meaningful employment and refresher training.

Trainees must hold a minimum security clearance of Top secret Negative Vetting Level 2 (NV2) to attend this training.

Information Systems Technician
Duration: Approximately 24 weeks.

Training incorporates a wide variety of Information Technology (IT) subjects ranging from windows, linux and network operating systems, network fundamentals, fault finding hardware, cyber and network security applications. Subjects include installation of applications, peripheral devices, operating a IS service desk, data communications and operation of a Deployable Local Area Network (DLAN).

On the successful completion of this course you will receive Pay Grade 3. You will be posted to a major Royal Australian Signals unit, typically Darwin, Brisbane or Townsville, and through on-the-job training obtain the skills and experience to be an effective member of an Information Systems detachment. A minimum of 12 months to consolidate your training is mandatory before you progress to Pay Grade 4.

Communications Systems Operator
Duration: Approximately 11 weeks.

Trainees will be instructed in a number of different subjects including the operation and maintenance of military High Frequency (HF) and Very High Frequency (VHF) radios, portable Ultra High Frequency (UHF) satellite terminals, using contemporary waveforms and cryptographic equipment.

Communication Systems Operators will also be trained to deploy specialised battle management networks and operate computer based communications applications. This training will be conducted in a range of simulated environments based upon vehicle and Command Post operations.

Telecommunications Technician
Duration: Approximately 72 weeks.

Training incorporates all aspects of the telecommunications communications equipment used in Royal Australian Signals Units. Subjects include telecommunications cabling, satellite theory and equipment stations, circuit switch networks, telephone systems and local and wide area computer networks. On the successful completion of the course you will receive Pay Group 4.