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WorkPath Australia Success Story - Stewart Skidmore

​About Stewart

Tell us a little about your service in the ADF?

I spent 11 years in the Royal Australian Navy as a Communications and Information Systems Sailor. During that time i have served on many different ships and platforms including HMAS Adelaide, HMAS Darwin and HMAS Newcastle. In the last three years i was posted to Canberra where i was introduced to an IT system that used Linux and began to learn and grow in knowledge with the new operating system which really interested me. Once I conducted my first Red Hat course i knew that it was the pathway I would like to continue.


What were/are your goals in transitioning into civilian employment?

Stability in my life was the biggest reason why I moved on from the military. Being able to plan for a structured future where we could have a family without the continuous moving or interruptions. Another motivation was to find a career that did set our financial stability into the opposite direction as leaving the military also involves leaving a plethora of benefits and services that keeps one feeling secure and safe.

What does securing a meaningful post-service role mean for you and your family?

Finding a secure employment post military that allows you to have the same level of comfort and structure as what you have come to expect in the military is the biggest goal of all. knowing that your financial stability will not be directly impacted in a negative way for your family is what a pre-discharge military individual strives to find.

The WorkPath Australia Program

How did you hear about WorkPath Australia?

After being posted to Canberra and being introduced to Linux as a interesting IT path to learn I decided that it would be a good time to start looking at what opportunities could be possible outside of the military. At that point I wasn't sure of the potential of the path that i wanted to take but knew that i wouldn't be able to continue my Linux related role after my posting had finished as my career was directed back to serving on a vessel. I started looking to jobs that were available and stumbled across the WorkPath Australia's job advertisement on the website Indeed, which explained that they would work with me up to 24 months before discharge and get allocated training to enter the new career that suited my capabilities. This opportunity was extremely appealing so I put my CV in and was contacted not long after.

How did you find the process from the initial phone call with WorkPath Australia?

The initial phone call from David Jam was quite and eye opener, it was like being told an incredible tail that my brain hadn't quite converted into an opportunity. Being told that the program would cater personally to my needs and growth to help me gain an employment that not only gave me the security that the military had given me but also offered an entirely new amount of benefits that I didnt even think of. Having internationally recognized qualifications that would be organised by WorkPath Australia with my potentially new employer for free was a huge difference that removed WorkPath Australia from being a regular recruit agency trying to find you a job and put them into a category where they truly cared about the needs, outcomes and opportunities for the individual they where working with. With the training that came with the program also came greater opportunities for the employer that i was being matched with. No longer was i looking for a job with the minimal qualifications that i had gained, now i was being connected with one of the most reputable IT companies not just in Australia but internationally. I'm not going to lie there were some doubts about how good this program was sounding and what could actually come about from the program as for most military individuals, recruiting agencies are aired on a side of caution of having their own priority being their own commission for getting us employment. This couldn't be further from the truth when working with the program, with everything that the program offers and organised for you it became very clear that this Program truly cared about veterans finding not just suitable but incredible employment. And all of this was made very clear through the passion and efforts that was shown right from the initial phone call that i had about the WorkPath Australia program.

What stood out about WorkPath Australia from other veteran transition programs?

Care for our outcome first and foremost, the desire that WorkPath Australia showed to have us be successful in obtaining the employment was like nothing i could have imagined. They keep frequent contact and asked if i needed them to do anything at all during the time, they cared about the outcomes of the studies given including setting my up with others that were apart of the program doing the same exams for support and guidance. Also having frequent contact created a much needed ease for the transitioning members including myself, as making the leap from the military caused a whole new uncertainty for the program catered for and reassured that it was with us all the way till we had a successful employment no matter what the study outcome was.

What was your personal experience like going through the WPA program?

My personal experience working with and going through the program was full of support and opportunity. I constantly had to pinch myself that i was being given this opportunity that truly felt like it was a once in a life time situation. When things got tough with the studies and exams the program and David Jam personally financed exam attempts to make sure that i had been given the greatest possibilities for success that they didn't need to do. This really made me feel like i was transitioning with the best situation i really could have had. The program also gave me the opportunity to conduct my own growth both academically and personally which was always celebrated by the David Jam and the WorkPath Australia program. Overall this program has been one of the most successful and beneficial times of my life and i will never forget it.

In what ways has the WorkPath Australia program changed your life and perspective?

The program has changed my life in helping me gain an employment that not only allowed me to discharge with financial stability now and into the future but also gave me a better prospective in what to expect if i ever work with the same team again, which is having the full backing and devotion of a team that wants to see you succeed in your employment.

What surprised you about the program?

Short answer everything! from the communication being amazing to the devotion to have a successful outcome in every step of the program and once you have completed the journey they even give you a congratulatory phone call for graduating from the program.

How did the WorkPath Australia program assist your transition into meaningful employment?

The program organised, negotiated and supported all aspects of the employment path. They delivered a fantastic contract from the employer that even paid for incredible courses that hold high regard in the IT community. They offered assistance for studying including the creation of valuable communication with other member doing the same pathway and also providing extra help with exam funding that was above and beyond what they needed to do.

What was the most beneficial piece of advice or resource your received?

I think the biggest resource that this program has given me is the ability to know that i can strive and succeed in completing difficult studies even in the most stressful times. The best advice i received was actually from another transitioning member that i knew who was apart of the program as well. He said when you are given an opportunity like what WorkPath Australia has provided it gives you a new drive for success that gives you growth and structure. To be given such an amazing opportunity and to let it get away would be loosing one of the best chances you may ever get in your life to start a new journey with the best foot forward.


What advice would you offer other veterans who are considering transitioning?

Believe that it is as good as it sounds and take the leap, you are not going to get a chance much better than what the program can offer you.

Would you recommend the WorkPath Australia program to other veterans and why?

I would offer this program to any veteran that is considering leaving as the benefits are just too incredible to dismiss. Free courses, a viable contract, all with a support that is second to none. It is difficult for veterans to find something that gives them as much stability and security as what the military does, this program doesn't just set that up for the veteran it offers an opportunity to increase that stability and security into the future without going backwards first.

Did WorkPath Australia meet/exceed your expectations?

WorkPath Australia exceed my expectations in every way i could think of. From care and consideration for the individual, making sure that the best outcome whether that be a negotiated contract or just personal growth was conducted with the member in mind and because of this the program still shocks me even after participating to this day.

What are your overall thoughts/comments on the WorkPath Australia Program?

​Fantastic journey that i will never forget, i have qualifications that i couldn't have gotten any other way and a job that has me happier than ever.

Want to join the WorkPath Australia Program?

The WPA program is free for all veteran participants to join. Spaces are strictly limited.

Learn more and register your interest TODAY!