Skilled migration has always been a big thing in Australia. If you think about it, the whole economy has been building on skills and hard labour of immigrants. Interestingly, about a quarter of Australians were born overseas and almost half of Australian households have at least one parent born overseas. The great demand for unskilled labor started in 1960 when rapid industrialisation took place. With the shift from manufacturing towards a highly skilled service economy, not all Australians were able to keep up with the shift. As a result, skilled professionals became noticeably scarce and demand for skilled labour become apparent.
Before you start thinking about moving your career to Australia as a skilled migrant, you need to make sure that your occupation is in demand and you must speak very good English.
Skilled migration can offer you two options, such as Employer Sponsored Migration (ESM) or General Skilled Migration (GSM). If you do not meet requirements for ESM or GSM, you could explore a Temporary Work Skilled Visa, known as 457, or a Student visa. Both are temporary visas but with good advice, financial support, patience and strategy these visas may lead some of you to a permanent residency.
Employer Sponsored Migration
The Employer Sponsored Migration program has two main visa classes Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS) and Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (RSMS).
There are three streams within both ENS and RSMS:
- A Temporary Residence Transition Stream (must have held 457 for at least 2 years)
- a Direct Entry Stream
- and an Agreement Stream (agreement between a company and the government).
Both ENS and RSMS categories require a business in Australia to lodge an application for approval of a nominated position. Each of the three streams has a separate legislation for the approval of the nomination.
General Skilled Migration
GSM has two permanent options and one provisional option. I will only mention the permanent options today.
The first option allows you to migrate independently and settle anywhere in Australia, the second option requires a nomination from one of the Australian states or territories; you will be required to work and live in that state or territory that nominated you for a certain period before you can relocate anywhere else in Australia.
As opposed to The Employer Sponsored Migration program, before you can apply for GSM, you must be invited by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection (DIBP). In order to be invited to apply for this visa you must achieve a score of a minimum of 60 points in the points test. The points test will be scored according to your attributes at the time of invitation. You can get points for your age, qualifications, amount of experience, level of English and other attributes outlined in the Migration Regulations.
When you think about moving your career to Australia as a Skilled Migrant, you must meet minimum requirements.
The following minimum requirements apply to most ESM and GSM options:
- You must not be over 50 years old
- Your occupation must be either on a Skilled Occupation List or (SOL) on a Consolidated Sponsored Occupation List (CSOL).
- You need to provide a positive skilled assessment and have a number of years of experience for most of the options (this requirement does not apply to a Temporary Residence Transition Stream if you apply after having held your 457 for at least 2 years).
- You need to have either competent (IELTS 6) or proficient English (IELTS 7). DIBP accepts English language test’s results of other major providers, outlined in the Migration Regulations.
The 2015 Migration Council of Australia report has outlined that new permanent migrants are more highly educated and have better incomes than both their predecessors and the average Australians. Migrants with low or no language proﬁciency however have historically faced a 10–20 per cent earnings gap. In contrast, newer migrants with very good English proﬁciency are thriving in the labour market, outperforming even their native English peers who have been in Australia for decades. According to the report, the trend of skilled migration is likely to continue and it estimates that by 2050 it will have contributed to 40% of the Australian GDP.
As you can appreciate, there is a lot to consider when you decide to move your career to Australia.
Australian migration law is highly complex and you must do a lot of research to succeed with your migration plan. Coming to Australia as a skilled migrant is an expensive exercise and the cost can double or triple when you come with a family. Having a registered migration agent assisting you with the process can look like an additional cost, but it can save you money, nerves and your chance to come to Australia in the longer run. Australia is a land of opportunities and having lived in Australia for 14 years myself, I would not want to live anywhere else.
This was a guest post by Vlada from uMBA Australia.
If after reading this article, you have more questions about migration to Australia, please feel free to email Vlada. At Let’s Talk Career, we highly recommend Vlada’s services.