About the Job

If you want to protect the land you live on while experiencing adventure outside of the everyday, the Army Reserve has an exciting opportunity for you.

As a part-time Regional Force Soldier in the Army Reserve, you'll be a member of the Regional Force Surveillance Unit (RFSU), gaining intel by observing and maintaining situational awareness in your Area of Responsibility.

Regional Force Soldiers are usually recruited from the local area. Using your knowledge of the land, you'll conduct stealth patrols, detecting hostiles and reporting back to the Australian Defence Force or relevant government agency. And be trained in skilled small patrol tactics and effective teamwork while gathering an intimate knowledge of the local infrastructure.

Some of the tasks you can be responsible for include:

  • Conduct surveillance and reconnaissance operations, including route reconnaissance
  • Acquire and verify military geographic information within assigned Areas of Operations
  • Locate and report on enemy positions
  • Conduct Observation Posts in tactically suited areas
  • Conduct surveillance tasks in conjunction with Federal and State Government authorities when authorised

On Reserve parade nights, you can expect to bond with your squad, plan ahead for exercises and keep up your soldiering training.

In larger training exercises you'll get to use an F88 rifle, a light robust and effective rifle, as well as Night Fighting Equipment (NFE) and other specialist surveillance equipment.

This is a great opportunity to give back to your community, work with advanced machinery and operate within a close-knit team – without having to compromise your lifestyle in this flexible part-time role.

Just give as little as one night a week, one weekend a month or a few weeks a year – and you'll get a world of new experiences back.

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.

Salary & Allowances

Most Reservists join the Australian Defence Force for the exciting work, the friendships and the lifestyle. But there are many other benefits too, including financial ones.

The pay you receive in the Army Reserve goes straight into your pocket with no deductions for tax, and it increases as you gain seniority and experience.

For more details download our Salary Scales.


There are Army Reserve depots located all around Australia, and this role may be available near you even if not listed in the locations below. Speak to a recruiter to find out more, or click here to find the Army Reserve depots closest to you.

With this being a critical role within the Defence Force, it’s possible that positions will be created outside of the listed locations. This will be reviewed and determined on a case by case basis.

Reserve Unit Locations

  • Broome WA 6725 Broome Depot
  • Broome WA 6725 NORFORCE
  • Derby WA 6728 NORFORCE
  • Exmouth WA 6707 Exmouth Depot
  • Geraldton WA 6530 Geraldton Training Barracks
  • Karrakatta WA 6010 Irwin Barracks
  • Newman WA 6753 Newman Depot
  • Port Hedland WA 6721 Port Hedland Depot
  • Karratha WA 6714 Taylor Barracks
  • Tom Price WA 6751 Tom Price Depot
  • Carnarvon WA 6701 Carnarvon Training Depot
  • Kununurra WA 6743 Norforce Kununurra
  • Groote NT 0872 Groote Eylandt Depot
  • Jabiru NT 0886 Jabiru Depot
  • Larrakeyah NT 0820 Larrakeyah Barracks
  • Katherine NT 0852 NORFORCE
  • Alice Springs NT 0870 NORFORCE
  • Tennant Creek NT 0860 NORFORCE
  • Nhulunbuy NT 0880 NORFORCE
  • Borroloola NT 0854 NORFORCE
  • Nguiu NT 0822 NORFORCE
  • Atherton QLD 4883 Atherton Depot
  • Bamaga QLD 4876 51 FNQR
  • Innisfail QLD 4860 Calendar Park
  • Townsville QLD 4813 Lavarack Barracks
  • Lockhart River QLD 4871 Lockhart River Depot
  • Mt Isa QLD 4825 Mt Isa Depot
  • Cairns QLD 4892 Pormpuraaw Depot
  • Thursday Island QLD 4875 Thursday Island Depot
  • Weipa QLD 4874 Weipa Depot
  • Yorke Island QLD 4875 Yorke Island Depot
  • Cairns QLD 4869 Porton Barracks
  • Aurukun QLD 4892 51 FNQR



Applicants will not normally be allowed to enter the Defence Force 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, depending upon the capacity of their local recruiting centre.

The Compulsory Retirement Age (CRA) for Reserve Service is 65 years. Enlistment up to and including the age of 60 years is open for all employment categories. Candidates who wish to enlist into the Army Reserve beyond the age of 60 years will need to be further assessed to ensure they would be feasibly able to complete all obligatory pre-requisite training in their chosen area of employment prior to reaching CRA.

Candidates whose age exceeds the age guidelines may still be considered for appointment, providing they have special skills or training that is of value to the Army

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 test 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 can work from as little as one night a week, with your first year of service involving between 35-100 days (including IET and Military Training). Each year following you’ll need to commit to between 20-100 days.

Members may transfer out of the active Army Reserve at any time.

All candidates who are appointed or enlisted into the Army Reserve may undertake volunteer service until the age of 65 (Compulsory Retiring Age) subject to the requirements of the Army and suitability for further service.


To help determine your suitability to join the Australian Defence Force, you’ll need to complete a series of aptitude tests which may include verbal, spatial and numerical ability, as well as a general maths test.

Additional testing might be required at a later date. Psychology support staff will explain what’s involved with each test. Find out more here.


Only Australian citizens are permitted to serve in the Defence Force.

If you are a permanent resident of Australia, the Defence Force may consider a temporary waiver of the citizenship requirement if the position for which you are applying cannot be filled by an applicant who meets all 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 its employees to have security clearances appropriate to their employment.

A process of background checks, collection of relevant information and, as required, interviews, enables the Australian Government Security Vetting Agency 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, and current policy requires applicants to have a checkable background for the previous 10 years. Required information includes:

  • Residence
  • Employment
  • Education
  • Credit

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

NOTE: The security clearance is critical to an applicant’s successful progression through the Army training system. If an applicant is unable to obtain the required security clearance in time they will not be allowed to continue their training and may need to be re-allocated to another employment category. As such, it is strongly recommended that all applicants obtain the required documentation as soon as possible to provide the best opportunity to be employed in their preferred employment category.


Military Training


Your training will begin with the Regional Force Surveillance Unit Induction Course (RFSUIC) which is generally conducted in the three major RFSU centres in Darwin (NORFORCE), Karratha (Pilbara Regiment) and Cairns (51 FNQR). During the RFSUIC your training will develop those foundation skills, knowledge and attitudes required to prepare you for employment as a Regional Force Soldier. The RFSUIC comprises 3 weeks of continuous training.

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

Army Reserve Recruit Course
Duration: Approximately 3 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.

You will need to complete this course within 6 months of enlisting.

For more information, visit Army Reserve Training.

Employment Training

Patrolman Course

Duration of Training is 2 weeks. This training concentrates on fieldcraft skills and small patrol tactics and focuses on various weapons systems, field firing and night fighting equipment that an RFSU Regional Force Soldier may employ.

When you complete the training you will have reached the high standard required of an RFSU Regional Force Soldier but this is only the start of your training.

RFSU Regional Force Soldiers may also qualify as Signallers, Patrol Medics, Combat Drivers, Small Craft Handlers or Visual Trackers in order to develop the knowledge, skills and attitudes required to be a member of a RFSU patrol.