Australia guide

Career Guide Seldon-Rosser-Career-Guide-Sydney

Key learnings:

  • a better understanding of the logistics of working in Australia
  • an understanding of how realistic it is to move to Australia if I need a visa 

Will I be able to get a visa?

In the current climate, this is the first question to ask yourself before researching any further.

There were big changes to visas made in mid-2017 which made it more difficult for professional services marketers (and many other professions) to obtain employer sponsorship of a Visa.

The detail is included here, but in real terms, whilst we are still able to help those who are coming here anyway, it’s no longer realistic to hope to look at the Australian market opportunistically and secure a visa and relocation package to bring you here.  It is currently much easier to secure a role with a visa in Asia.

If you have a strong personal reason to be in Australia and are planning the move regardless, or, are travelling here on a working holiday visa, we are still able to assist and so please get in touch.

Non Employer Sponsored Visas 

Working Holiday Visa (WHV)

You are likely to be eligible for this Visa if:

  1. you have not yet turned 31 at the time of application; and
  2. you are a citizen of an “arrangement country” (the links below lead to the full list but arrangement countries include Canada, Hong Kong, Republic of Ireland, Japan, many European countries and the United Kingdom).

This visa will allow you to work for any one employer for a period of six months at a time for a one year total period.

If you fit into this category you can easily and relatively cheaply apply for this yourself.  When you arrive in Australia, you will be able to make yourself available to firms for contract work.

In the past, pre-2017 changes, it was pretty common for people to be offered business sponsorship (longer term working visa) at the conclusion of the contract.  This is still a possibility at some firms, however we are still testing the market and waiting to see how open employers are to this, following the recent visa changes (making it harder and more expensive to secure these).  If this is something you hope to do, Seldon Rosser will be able to advise you which firms tend to be more open than others to providing Visas at the end of this sort of contract period.

This route tends to suit those who have less responsibility and no dependents, meaning they can take the risk to come here without a role as there is no guarantee you will obtain the career position you’re after.

Ancestral / Spousal options

If you have a partner, immediate family or ancestry in Australia there may be options open to you.  For example, the ‘Partner Category’ Visa means that if you are classified as a partner or fiancé of an Australian citizen, an Australian permanent resident or a New Zealand citizen, you may be eligible to enter Australia with full working rights.

Skilled Migration

This is often referred to as the “points system” and if you have enough points you are eligible to apply for Skilled Migration Permanent Residency.  This may take some time (2/3 years), and the length will vary, so we do suggest that you get advice from the Department of Immigration.  However, this will allow you to move to Australia as a Permanent Resident once the Visa is granted giving you the same full working rights as an Australian Citizen.

Employer Sponsored

Business Sponsorship

This has in the past been the most common form of Visa that Seldon Rosser secured for candidates.  However, in mid-2017, it was announced that this Visa was to be abolished and replaced with a new Temporary Skill Shortage (TSS) visa.

There are two streams – Short Term and Medium Term of this TSS visa.  Each stream has a list of Job Types to which it applies.  Any of the roles we work on in professional services marcomms / BD would be “Marketing Specialist” and on the Short Term TSS Visa list.

This allows you to:

  • be sponsored by the employer for this 2 years TSS visa.
  • it can be renewed once for another 2 years.
  • there is no route to Permanent Residency on this visa and so at the end of the 2 year period your right to work in Australia would end.
  • your eligible partner/spouse would get full working rights in Australia for the duration of your TSS visa.

How hard is it to get business sponsorship?

It is difficult to get business sponsorship in Australia.  Many of our clients have told us they will no longer consider this and so will not take applications from those seeking a visa.  Firms that have sought visas for people (minority) are finding that the changes have led to long wait periods; when the recent higher costs and shorter length of time they can hire someone for are factored in, it makes it less attractive for employers.

Seldon Rosser can still assist you if you are moving to Australia anyway and where there is a real personal reason to be here.

For more information:

www.homeaffairs.gov.au/trav/visa-1

www.homeaffairs.gov.au/trav/work/457-abolition-replacement

www.australia.gov.au/information-and-services/immigration-and-visas

https://www.homeaffairs.gov.au/trav/visa-1/417-

How will my salary compare?

You can check out the 2019 Salary Benchmarks but the best way to do this is to speak to a consultant. Australian salaries are quoted as inclusive of superannuation (see below) and before tax.

Can I expect a relocation package and other benefits?

Relocation package

Firms are reticent to sponsor work visas, which means not many firms offer relocation packages from other countries.

Annual leave

The standard in Australia is to offer 20 days annual leave and, in our experience, leave isn’t normally part of the salary package negotiation.  There are more public holidays in Australia than some part of the world for example, the United Kingdom.  Many firms shut down for a two week period over Christmas and there is enforced annual leave at this time (as well as some public holidays).  A lot of firms now offer unpaid leave options.

Bonuses

These are usually discretionary (though increasingly firms have good structure and transparency around this) and vary across the market.  We can advise you on this firm-by-firm when making applications.

Notice periods

Historically and typically Australian business expect 4 weeks/1 month across the board regardless of seniority.  (Some international firms driven out of the UK have started bringing in 2/3 month notice terms for Senior Managers.)

What is Superannuation (“Super”) and how does it work?

Superannuation (or “super” as we colloquially refer to it) is similar to what is know as the Pension in many other countries.

The law stipulates that every individual has 9.5% of their salary deducted at source and that it is put into that individual’s designated super fund. This 9.5% is deducted from the ‘gross’ salary (i.e. before tax). This applies to all individuals equally, regardless of industry, profession or seniority, whether full time or casual. (The Government currently has plans to increase this percentage to 12% by 2022).

There are a lot of options to choose from in terms of where to keep and how to manage your super.  You can choose:

  • a large, industry based fund
  • a boutique financial planner or
  • you can self-manage your super fund.

There are also opportunities for people to leverage financial opportunities out of their super (for example, buying an investment property).

It is also worth noting that if you stay in Australia for several years and then move back to, for example, the UK, you will have the option of (1) transferring the content of your super fund to an overseas pension plan, (2) leaving it in Australia until you are of an age to draw upon it (you can do this from another country), or (3) choosing to take it as a lump sum (at which point it will be taxed).

The most important thing to remember when you’re looking at career opportunities is that professional services firms will quote the salary range and offer as a “package”.  Package means inclusive of both base and super. ( EG, $100k + Super would be $109,500 package; and a package of $100k equates to a Base of $91,324.22 + Super).  It’s important to understand this so that there are no surprises at the offer stage.

For more information:

https://www.ato.gov.au/Individuals/Super/

Can you tell me about the tax rate?

Income tax in Australia will be deducted from your earnings at source.  For the first six months you are here you will be seen as a non-tax resident and pay slightly higher tax rates but after this you will be “resident” for tax purposes.

Of course, you should seek your own advice on this issue, but as a starting point, the below table illustrates the income tax rates and levels for Australian tax residents for the 2019/2020 tax year:

Australian Income Tax Rates

TAXABLE INCOME% TAX PAIDTAX PAID ON INCOME
0 – $18,2000%nil
$18,201 – $37,00019%19c for each $1 over $18,200
$37,001 – $90,00033%$3,572 plus 32.5c for each $1 over $37,000
$90,001 – $180,00037%$20,797 plus 37c for each $1 over $90,000
$180,001 and over45%$54,096 plus 45c for each $1 over $180,000

For more information:

https://www.ato.gov.au/rates/individual-income-tax-rates/

Can you tell me about renting?

You can research rent prices on local real estate sites. The best sites for you to review to get an idea of rental costs are:

www.realestate.com

www.domain.com

I’d like to know more – what next?

The sooner you tell us that you’re considering this, the sooner we can help.  You don’t need to wait until you’re booking your flights before getting in touch! Speak to us – we’re always happy to chat and answer your questions.

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