This report describes the characteristics of all Australian Defence Force (ADF) members who served between 1985 and 2019. This cohort will be used for further research into permanent, reserve and ex-serving ADF members. As of 31 December 2019, almost 373,500 Australians had served at least one day in the ADF since 1 January 1985. Of these, just over 358,000 were still alive of which 59,000 were permanent, 38,700 reserve and nearly 261,000 ex-serving. 

  • Cat. no: PHE 289
Findings from this report:
  • The average length of service for ex-serving members was 10 years

  • The most common separation reason for ex-serving members was voluntary separation (45%)

  • More than 4 in 5 (84%) ex-serving members were male and 16% were female

  • Half (50%) of ex-serving members separated from the ADF 20 or more years ago