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New Enterprise Incentive Scheme (NEIS)

Do you have a great business idea? Want to become your own boss, and work towards your career goals and personal growth? 

The New Enterprise Incentive Scheme (NEIS) is a government-funded program designed to help aspiring entrepreneurs realise their dream of starting a new, viable business through small business training, expert mentoring and income support. The program is part of New Business Assistance, an Australian government initiative managed by Centrelink and the Department of Human Services. 

The comprehensive program involves the completion of a Certificate III in Micro Business Operations over an eight-week period, helping participants learn new skills in small business planning and operations while they develop their business idea and complete their business plan. After this, participants receive 12 months of mentoring from one of MTC’s dedicated Business Coaches.

Our flexible training program also gives participants the option to attend online classes at a time that suits them, allowing them to fit their training around other commitments.

Who is eligible for NEIS?

To do the NEIS program with MTC Australia, you must live in the Sydney South West or Sydney East Metro areas and meet the following Government criteria:

  • At least 18 years of age
  • Able to legally work in Australia
  • Available to participate in NEIS training and work full-time in your proposed NEIS business
  • Part-time workers
  • Part-time students
  • Volunteers

Eligible candidates must not have:

  • Received NEIS assistance within the past 12 months
  • Filed bankruptcy and still be classified as bankrupt

You can find out more about individual NEIS eligibility by contacting our Customer Care team on 1300 232 663, or visiting the Department of Education, Skills and Employment website.

Does your business idea qualify for NEIS?

When you apply to enrol in NEIS, the Australian government also requires that your business idea meet certain eligibility criteria. These include:

  • Not currently be operating on a commercial basis
  • Have an independent business structure
  • Be lawful and withstand public scrutiny of its operation
  • Assessed as commercially viable by MTC Australia
  • Intend to be established, located and operated within Australia
  • Be structured so you, the applicant, maintain a controlling interest in the business while it is receiving payments under NEIS. 

MTC Australia’s NEIS program locations

MTC Australia offers the NEIS Program throughout the Sydney South West and Sydney East Metro areas. Our flexible, online delivery of the program ensures that our customers within the Sydney South West and Sydney East Metro areas can undertake the program remotely.

When you complete your application, we’ll advise of your suitability, assign a course start date and a dedicated Business Coach who will assess the commercial viability of your business venture.

Information for digital participants

If you’re experiencing any issues accessing the Online Employment Services (OES) portal, you can contact the Department’s Digital Services Contact Centre on 1800 314 667.

Service guarantee

If you are interested (or currently) participating in our NEIS program, please take a look at the Department of Education, Skills and Employment’s Service Guarantee for jobactive providers (this also covers NEIS).

Frequently asked questions

What courses can I study as part of NEIS?

The Department of Human Services recognises up to 13 weeks of training as an approved income support activity. We’ll refer you to the training courses you need to get your business idea moving.

We recommend the Certificate III in Micro Business Operations to many of our NEIS candidates, who have found the course to provide them with essential knowledge for future success.

What is the NEIS Allowance and how is it calculated?

Entrepreneurs currently receiving an income support payment through the Department of Human Services are eligible to receive NEIS Allowance. You can receive NEIS Allowance payments for up to the first 39 weeks of your business operation.

The payment is equal to the JobSeeker rate for singles, 22 years of age and over, with no children. To receive the payment, you must remain compliant with the obligations under your NEIS Participant Agreement.

What factors may affect my NEIS Allowance?

The Department of Human Services and Centrelink will take into account any income you may be receiving apart from your business income. If you earn more than double your NEIS Allowance rate, Centrelink may reduce or cancel your NEIS Allowance payment.

At all times, your NEIS business MUST be your primary source of income, and your business income isn’t measured against your payment under any circumstances.

What business mentoring services are available to me?

We connect you with professionals and experts who will teach you how to start, run and manage your new business. This means you benefit from the experience and knowledge of entrepreneurs who’ve been there and done it.

Our network of entrepreneurs will teach you about:

  • Business establishment
  • Business planning
  • Financial management
  • Business operations
  • Legal requirements and obligations
  • Sales
  • Marketing

You’ll receive mentoring for the first 12 months of your participation in the program, completely free.

Looking for an MTC Australia Location?

Due to COVID 19, all of our programs are currently being delivered online or remotely and visits to our sites is only under exceptional circumstances. If you want to attend a site or speak to one of our staff, please call Customer Care on 1300 232 663.