Incumbent Worker Training (IWT) funding opportunity

Quarter 3 Funding is now closed due to funding exhaustion. 

Quarter 4 opens at 12:01 am of 4/1/2024.

  • You may start the application process, but do not press submit prior to the opening time/date.
  • Early submissions will be denied.

The IWT program is a grant funding resource, helping to off-set a portion of skills-based training costs for incumbent workers employed by Montana's private sector organizations. 

  • "Incumbent" is defined as an individual who is working a minimum of 20+ hours/week, consecutively for a minimum of 6-months.
  • Public, seasonal and non-paid workers/volunteers may NOT apply.

Organizations must demonstrate training will increase the worker's skill-level, result in a promotion or wage gain, or expand their market/increase revenue, with the intent of preserving existing jobs for Montana residents. 

 Applications must be submitted at least 14-days prior to the start of training date.
      Applications must be approved before training begins.

     Grant caps are tiered, based on the number of hours an eligible employee works:

  • 20-34 hours a week year-round $1,000 (part time status)
  • 35+ hours a week year-round $2,500 (full time status)

To see if your organization meets minimum qualifications, please visit


This is a competitive grant. Grant funding is allocated to the Montana Department of Labor & Industry (MDLI) on a State Fiscal Year (July 1st - June 30th) and is available on a first-come first-served basis. 

  • Funding is not guaranteed.  In order to ensure equitable distribution of funding across Montana, previous awardees or multiple submissions from any one employer may be waitlisted and/or denied.  
  • The review team also measures number of requests from one county and/or number of requests that indicate the same trainer may also be waitlisted or denied.

The following are not eligible for incumbent worker training grant funding:

  • All staff training;
  • Continuing education required to maintain professional certification or licensure;
  • Training customarily required or provided by the business or industry;
  • Conferences, Trade Shows, Expos, Summits; 
  • Training that occurred prior to the grant request being awarded;
  • Subscription/Membership related trainings;
  • Retreats;
  • Trainings that exceed a year's time from start to finish;
  • Training for which the incumbent worker was hired to do.

Refer to the MCA and ARM for criteria, rulemaking, requirements, processes, evaluation/limitations, claims and appeals.

Montana Department of Labor and Industry