If your company is planning an expansion to Australia, you may already have employees ready to make the move and run your new location. However, you must ensure that every employee obtains an Australia work visa to work and live in the country legally.
Types of work visas in Australia
Australia offers several types of work visas for a variety of professions, including skilled workers, specialized workers, short-term trainees, investors, and experienced businesspeople. Your employees will most likely fall under the “skilled professionals” category and can apply for any of the following:
- Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS) visa: An employer nominates a skilled worker to live and work in Australia permanently.
- Skilled Independent visa: Invited workers and New Zealand citizens with skills the country needs can acquire this visa.
- Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (RSMS) visa: An employer nominates an employee to live and work in a regional part of the country permanently.
- Skilled Nominated visa: Employers nominate skilled workers to live and work as permanent Australia residents.
- Temporary Skilled Shortage visa: Employers nominate a suitably skilled worker to temporarily work in Australia when a resident is not available for the position.
- Skilled Regional (
ProfessionalProvisional) visa: A temporary visa for skilled workers who want to live and work in a specific region of Australia.
- Temporary Work (Short Stay Specialist) visa: A temporary visa for short-term, highly specialized work.
- Temporary Work (International Relations) visa: A temporary visa for work meant to improve Australia’s international relations.
- Distinguished Talent visa: A permanent visa for individuals with an internationally recognized record of outstanding achievement in a certain area.
- Business Talent (Permanent) visa: Meant for developing or establishing a new or existing company.
Requirements to obtain Australia work visas
Every Australia work visa has its own requirements, and some are based on an immigration point system. Your employees may need different visas depending on their type of work and how long they’ll perform those duties for your company. For the ENS visa, employees must show that they have the skills necessary for the job through a skills assessment. The job needs to be on the relevant list of eligible skilled occupations, and you must specifically nominate the employee.
Other requirements include:
- Completing a medical exam
- Meeting character requirements
- Demonstrating competent English
- Having 3 years of relevant work experience
- Being under 45 years of age
- Reading or having been explained the Life in Australia booklet
- Signing the Australian Values Statement
As an employer, you can think of Australia’s work permits as 2 separate categories — unsponsored skilled visas and sponsored visas. If your employee needs an unsponsored skilled visa, they must submit an online Expression of Interest (EOI) through SkillSet. This online system receives and processes applications for skilled candidates. They will receive points for certain factors, such as age, skills, education, language proficiency, and more. If their profile is selected, they’ll get a nomination from you or the state territory.
Sponsored visas require you to sponsor the employee for them to apply. However, you must be an approved sponsor with a transaction reference number (TRN) or employer ID. Once you have those, the employee can apply online.
Other important considerations
Keep in mind that employees may also need a permanent visa, as not all work visas lead to permanent residency. Skilled work visas, business/investor-stream permanent visas, and family visas all allow employees to remain in Australia indefinitely. Permanent residency also provides certain benefits, such as enrollment in the national health scheme and the ability to buy property, work in New Zealand, and more.
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