Changes to visas: unlocking global opportunities for your career


Coming soon – there will be several developments in the structure of visas in both Australia and the UK. The signs are indicating that, once these changes are implemented, firms could more easily hire international talent into their teams. With the competition for talent, we are hopeful professional services firms will start to consider candidates requiring visas in both markets, and so re-establishing once again the UK and Australia as career destinations for international talent.

Time will tell how this plays out and how quickly ease of entry to these markets happens. While we are not migration experts, we regularly stay across news and updates on visa changes and how this how these impact hiring patterns in our market. Here’s a snapshot of what we understand so far.

Australia migration changes ahead – employer sponsored visas with routes to Permanent Residency

Last month, the Australian Government announced upcoming changes to Australia’s Migration System Reforms. What will this mean for professional services firms attracting talent into their BDMC and other business services teams?

Seldon Rosser’s predictions based on our understanding so far:

  • It will become easier, smoother and quicker for our clients to hire BDMC and other senior business services talent into their teams on visas.
  • We are already seeing some firms hire those on the current temporary TSS visas and as the process becomes smoother, we predict this will become a bigger trend to fill talent gaps in the market as these new rules come into play.
  • One of the biggest talent gaps firms are experiencing in Australia is currently at the BD&M Manager level across the board and we anticipate seeing international visa-led movement becoming a key talent solution at this level in particular.
  • We predict that it will be easier to entice talent to Australia on a temporary visa given there will now be pathways to Permanent Residency (‘PR’). This has been a barrier to attracting those with families to Australia ever since the current temporary TSS visas were brought into existence (without any route to PR).
  • Anyone already in Australia on a temporary visa will have a future route to PR.

These predictions are based on the following advice coming from the Government and interpreted by various migration experts:

  • There will be a three-tiered sponsor program with a risk-based approach to temporary visa applications (with ensuring no worker-exploitation being a key goal of the changes).
  • We predict that the roles that fall under Seldon Rosser remit would fall into the new ‘low touch stream’ given their salary positioning and specialist nature. Available information so far indicates a smoother process to secure these visas, with potential for less local market testing requirements.
  • The increasing of the base salary needed for TSS visas to c$70k won’t impact our community. Our clients may need to be aware of the predicted c$85k platform to move visa employees to PR for their most junior employees, though this won’t impact where Seldon Rosser operates.
  • There has been clear indication that TSS visa holders (existing and new) will have a pathway to PR by the end of 2023, though further information is yet to be provided. It is likely there will be a minimum 3-year work requirement prior to PR.
  • This is a massive change project and the timing of all of this is yet unclear.

For more information around the review of Australia’s migration system, read here.

Australia and UK changes to working holiday visas

Changes are on the horizon for working holiday visas, enabling Australian and British citizens to enjoy the benefits of these visas between these two countries up until the age of 35. Previously this was not an available visa route for the over 30s. This development is one of the results of a historic free trade agreement between Australia and the United Kingdom.

Also included in the changes is the ability to be granted up to three Working Holiday visas without having to meet any specified work requirements. Eligible applicants will then be able to lodge an application up until the day before their 36th birthday.

This is an exciting development for people looking to explore new markets and firms as part of their career ambitions – and the age extension may now capture highly experienced people who are looking for senior manager roles and beyond. With the above changes coming to employer sponsored visas and routes to PR, we predict an easier future route for those on WHV based in Australia to transition to longer term visas.

You can stay across the latest developments on the Australian and UK’s new working holiday visa arrangements here and the Free Trade Agreement here.

Graham and Katie have both experienced the move to Australia first-hand, and Angela understands what it is like to move to a new country for a role (and to hire international teams) after spending 14 years working in the Middle East. So we look forward to being able to support others looking to make an international move in the future.

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