Permanent and Temporary Skilled Workers

Permanent Skilled Workers (Employment Nominated Visas) 

Australian employers can sponsor overseas employees with a permanent visa as long as they are operating a business lawfully and actively. The employer sponsored program aims to allow Australian employers to satisfy the skill shortages by recruiting overseas skilled workers

The two employer-sponsored visa categories are:

 • the Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS) subclass 186

 • the Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (RSMS) subclass 187

While ENS can assist Australian businesses anywhere in Australia to fill vacancies in their business, RSMS can only be used by employers in regional or low population areas in Australia.  Concessional criteria and a wider range of permissible occupations for nomination apply for RSMS applications. 

The Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS) allows employers anywhere in Australia to nominate skilled people for permanent visas. There is only one subclass, subclass 186, which can be applied for when the visa applicant is in Australia or overseas.  The ENS process has two steps. First, the employer must apply to the Department for approval of a nominated position.  Second, the nominated employee must make a separate application for a visa.

There are three nomination streams available:

 1. the Temporary Residence Transition (TRT) stream

 2. the Direct Entry stream (DE) stream

 3. the Labour Agreement (‘Agreement’) stream

Different nomination criteria apply, depending on whether the nominee will be applying under the TRT stream, or under the DE stream.  TRT stream can be available to those who have held a 457/TRT visa for 3 years under the nominator. This visa stream is the most favourable one for the visa applicants. If you do not have work experience in Australia, you are required to meet the criteria of the Direct Entry stream in most cases. The applicants in the Direct Entry stream are required to be under the age of 45 and have IELTS 6.0 on each band at time of visa application.

The Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (RSMS) helps Australian emp­loyers in regional and low population growth areas to recruit skilled foreign workers to fill permanent vacancies that are unable to be filled from the local labour market.  RSMS applications are given highest priority processing pursuant to Direction No 50, issued under section 499 of the Act

Any employer can participate in the scheme as long as they are actively and lawfully operating in regional Australia, meet certain other requirements and the position being filled is in an area covered under the RSMS.

‘Regional Australia’ is defined by postcode in a Gazette Notice. All areas of Australia are currently covered by the RSMS except Sydney, Wollon­gong, Newcastle, Melbourne, Brisbane and the Gold Coast. Like ENS, RSMS program also consists of 3 different categories of pathways: the Temporary Residence Transition stream, the Direct Entry stream and Agreement stream.

Temporary Skilled Workers

Normally, temporary work visas consist of 3 stages of application process. The next stage of application will not be assessed unless the precedent one is finalized.

  1. Sponsorship:  The Australian employer must have appropriate sponsorship in order to employ overseas workers.

  2. Nomination:  Most visas also require that the visa applicant be nominated by the sponsor. Nomination requirements are specified for each visa subclass.

  3. Visa application: Individual applicants’ eligibility will be examined against specific criteria including character and health requirements.

There are several temporary work visas which do not require 3 stages of application

• Subclass 400 Temporary Work (Short Stay Activity) : this visa allows you to stay for up to 3 months. Note: those working in entertainment industry should apply for an Entertainment visa.

• Subclass 417 Working Holiday visa: this visa allows the applicant to work and stay in Australia for up to maximum 2 years.

Temporary Skill Shortage visa (subclass 482)


This visa, referred to as the TSS visa, enables employers to address labour shortages by bringing in genuinely skilled workers where they cannot source an appropriately skilled Australian. It facilitates targeted use of overseas workers to address temporary skill shortages, while ensuring that Australian workers get priority. TSS visa holders can work in Australia in their nominated occupation for their approved sponsor under one of three streams:

  • the Short-Term stream
  • the Medium-Term stream
  • the Labour Agreement stream.

The Requirements for each stage are that:


• the applicant is lawfully and actively operating a business either in Australia or overseas.
• the applicant’s expenditure on training Australians meet the required level


 • the employer is a standard business sponsor
 • the base rate of pay which is, or would be, paid to an Australian citizen or permanent resident is greater than the TSMIT (Temporary Skilled Migration Income Threshold).
 • the qualifications and experience of the visa applicant are commensurate with qualifications and 
     experience specified for that occupation in the ANZSCO dictionary

3.Visa applications 

• the nomination must have been approved and the approval still in effect.
• the nominated occupation is on the current occupations list.
• the applicant must have the scores in the english test for each type of TSS visa (short or medium term)
• the applicant must meet character and health requirements.

There is also a Labour Market Testing (LMT) component involved unless the occupation is exempt

• Temporary Work(Long-stay Activity) Visa(Subclass 401):

this visa for those who want to come to Australia on a temporary basis for various activities such as sports and religion.

• Training and Research Visa (Subclass 407):

The Training and Research visa is for people who want to come to Australia on a temporary basis to undertake occupational training, conduct or observe research as a visiting academic or participate in a professional development program.

• Temporary Work (Entertainment) (Subclass 420) Visa:

A Temporary Work (Entertainment) visa (subclass 420) allows you to work in Australia in the entertainment industry.

Contact us with your personal details and the visa you are enquiring about on +61 2 8249 1834 or email us at and we will contact you as soon as practicable.