australia work visa - How to apply for an australia work visaAustralia Work Visa is one of the more common search terms used by visitors to getting down under HQ. With this in mind and in an effort to provide a slightly more succinct answer for those seeking information on the Australian Work Visa, we thought we’d pull together this article

If you want to apply for work in Australia and you’re not already an Australian resident then you’ll require an appropriate Australia work visa from the Australian department of Immigration.

Thankfully, you’ll be pleased to know that there are numerous visa ‘classes’ available which will help you apply for work in Australia, however getting the visa in the first place is often the hardest part of the process.

Australian Work Visa – How To Apply

Firstly a little scene setting. Proportionally speaking, Australia has a low population. At time of typing Australia is the 52nd least populous country in the world. It’s 22 Million residents represent just 0.32% of the global population.

Australia work Visa

Put into perspective. A country such as the UK has a population of over 62 Million and yet you could squeeze the UK into Australia over 30 times.

Australia has done well to avoid the impacts of the global financial crises. Parts of Australia are experiencing an economic boom and due to its limited population it recognises that it needs can’t be met by its current labour force, it also recognises that the attraction of applying for work in Australia means it can pick and choose the best candidates from around the world.

The department of immigration currently lists  a number of visa options for those looking to apply for work in Australia.

The majority of visa classes are targeted towards workers who have a specific skill. With this in mind, we’ll target the focus of this article on these classes of Australia Work Visa.

On the 1st July 2012, an online system called SkillSelect was launched by the Australian Immigration department which enables skilled workers to record their details to be considered for a skilled visa through the lodgement of Expression of Interest (EOI)

SkillSelect is a major change to how Australia manages its skilled migration program. It’s focus is to help ensure that the skilled migration program is based on the economic needs of Australia. A tap of sorts which can be turned on and off as the economic needs of Australia increase or decrease.

The plan is that SkillSelect will support the Australian Government in managing who can apply for skilled migration, when they can apply and in what numbers. As a result, the Department of Immigration and Citizenship expects to significantly reduce the time taken to process a visa application. This is a good thing as historically, processing times of 2 two to three years were not unheard of.

I think it’s fair to say that the reception to SkillSelect has been somewhat variable. If your wanting to know how to apply for an Australia work visa, the last thing your probably wanting to do is record your details to be considered for a skilled Australia work visa through an Expression of Interest (EOI). A process which could be akin to submitting your details in to some obscure black hole.

Unfortunately though, From 1 July 2012, all wannabe migrants interested in the points based skilled migration or business investment and innovation visa programs will be required to submit an EOI and wait before receiving an invitation in order to lodge a visa application.

To give you an indication of how long you might need to wait before you can apply for a work visa in Australia, When you submit your completed EOI, you will be shown your points score. Then, after each invitation round for the independent and family sponsored visas, the department will publish on this website the lowest scoring points test mark that allowed an EOI to be invited for each occupation group.

This will give you an indication of your potential for receiving an invitation in future rounds.

Australia Work Visa – What’s with all the points??

Ah yes, points. Sometimes the bane of every applicants lives. A points test ‘pass mark’ exists for the points tested skilled migration visas and the business innovation and investment visa.

There are a number of variables which impact the number of points being awarded and as the focus of this article is on looking at how to apply for a work visa in Australia, we’ll simply refer you to the other resources section at the end of this page which includes a link to a separate article that covers the points system in more detail.

60 points is the Pass mark (at time of typing) for the following point tested Skilled Visa Subclasses:

Subclass 189 Skilled – Independent – This points-based visa is for skilled workers who are not sponsored by an employer, a state or territory, or a family member. Certain family members can be included in the application.

Subclass 190 Skilled – Sponsored – This points-based visa is for skilled workers who are nominated by a state or territory.

Subclass 489 – Regional Nominated (Provisional) – This points-based visa is for skilled workers who are nominated by a state or territory or sponsored by an eligible relative living in a designated area in Australia

Subclass 489 – Skilled – Nominated or Sponsored (Provisional) visa – This points-based visa is for skilled workers who are nominated by a state or territory or sponsored by an eligible relative living in a designated area in Australia. The visa is valid for four years, and a visa holder must live and work in a specified regional area.

Subclass 188 Business Innovation and Investment (Provisional) – The Business Innovation stream is for people who want to own and manage a new or existing business in Australia, want to make a designated investment in an Australian state or territory and want to maintain business and investment activity in Australia after the original investment has matured.

So going the Skill Select Route is my only option then?

Not necessarily. There are a number of Skilled Visa options which you can apply for that enable you to work in Australia which don’t require you to lodge an EOI or even pass a points test.

The downside for these types of visa’s however is that your reliant on an employer sponsoring you and the role or job you’d be sponsored for appearing on a ‘Sponsored Occupation List’.

We have written a whole new article about this approach to applying for a work visa in Australia, however if your still left wondering how to apply for an Australia work visa, there are a number of things you could look to do now which will also help you on your way.

If your wanting to apply for an Australia work visa, firstly check that you qualify.

We have an online visa assessment tool which can be used for free, there are also some other great tools such as the Migration Departments Visa Wizard which should also give you an initial view on whether or not you qualify.

Alternatively, post a question below and we’ll look to help you in any way that we can.

Australia Work Visa – Resources

(please note that links to external sites will open in a new browser window).

Click here for our Free Australian Visa Assessment Tool

Points test information – Click here to visit the department website for the latest details

Australian Immigration Forums – Click Here to Access our Community Forums

Click here for more information about the Australan Immigration Departments Visa Wizard