Migration to Australia is a difficult and long process, particularly without assistance from a migration professional. One of the strongest visa pathways into Australia is through a skilled work visa however this will usually require a long and complicated skills assessment.
Finding out whether your occupation is included on the Medium and Long-term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL), the Short-term Skilled Occupation List (STSOL), the Regional Occupation List (ROL) or the Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (RSMS) ROL List can easily be accomplished using the Skills Occupation List on the Home Affairs website however this is just the first step.
Once you’ve found your occupation, for e.g. ICT Business Development Manager (displayed below) what do you do with all this information? What does it all mean? What is a VETASSESS?
Don’t worry you’re not alone in your confusion. This article will help prepare you for a skilled work visa application with particular focus on a skills assessment for an ICT Business Development Manager application.
First let’s break down the skilled occupation list (SOL). The first two parameters, “Occupation” and “ANZSCO Code” refer to the official job title and the specifically assigned ANZSCO Code for that occupation respectively. ANZSCO is the Australian and New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations and it makes skilled migration between these neighbors much easier however it is utilized for all migration.
Clicking on the ANZSCO code will take us to a page about occupations within that unit group. The unit group is the first four numbers of the ANZSCO code e.g. group 2252 is for ICT Sales Professionals and has information about the following occupations:
- 225211 ICT Account Manager
- 225212 ICT Business Development Manager
- 225213 ICT Sales Representative
You can find descriptions of the occupations there which is useful to ensure the occupation entails what you have been doing. Also you will find the skill level required for each job and any specialisation required by an occupation. The skill level is in accordance with the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) ranging from 1-10. This will be relevant again later when talking about the skills assessment.
Next we have “Visa” which lists the types of visas that may be applied for with this occupation. Similarly we have “List” which identifies which occupation lists the occupation is in. Usually, visas are offered in correspondence to a job shortage both in terms of location and duration. Furthermore, the nature of the position being applied for is relevant when choosing what visa to apply for. For example if you were offered a position in a regional location, if you were sponsored by a business or even government agency or even if you were offered work placement in Australia, all of these factors would affect what type of visa you apply for.
Similarly the lists the occupation is on will greatly affect what visas the occupation is eligible for. ICT Business Development Manager is on the short term skilled list meaning the visas available will be for shorter time periods. There are multiple pathways to Permanent Residency, some lists and visas being easier to use, so it is particularly advised to seek professional assistance if PR is ultimately your goal.
Finally we have the “Assessing Authority” and this topic will be our focus. For an application for a skilled work visa you will of course have to prove that you are in fact a skilled worker. In Australia we have a number of Assessing Authorities who are responsible for migration skills assessments for different categories of occupations. For ICT Business Development Manager the assessing authority is VETASSESS. This means we will have to get a migration skills assessment from VETASSESS.
Migration Skills Assessment
Before beginning your visa application for skilled occupation you will almost certainly require a successful migration skills assessment (MSA) from the relevant assessing authority. VETASSESS is one of the bigger assessing authorities, having responsibility for a large variety of vocations usually of a lower skill level. The skills assessment is different according to the assessing authority and the occupation. Today we’re going through a skills assessment for a 225212 ICT Business Development Manager on VETASSESS. In the future we will go through other skills assessments with other assessing authorities.
The skills required for each profession are described on the ANZSCO code page usually under the title “Indicative Skill Level” which will list what qualifications are needed to work the occupation in Australia. For the 225212 ICT Business Development Manager we have:
“Most occupations in this unit group have a level of skill commensurate with a bachelor degree or higher qualification. At least five years of relevant experience and/or relevant vendor certification may substitute for the formal qualification. In some instances relevant experience and/or on-the-job training may be required in addition to the formal qualification (ANZSCO Skill Level 1).”
This states that having a bachelor degree or higher qualification on the topic should be enough to pass a skills assessment. Where the applicant doesn’t have a sufficient formal qualification or if your degree is determined to be too different from the Australian counterpart then this can be substituted with 5 years of work or vendor experience.
Applications that substitute a qualification for work experience require a lot of documentation and it is strongly recommended you seek the assistance of a migration agent or legal professional for a much greater chance of a successful migration skills assessment.
Before beginning the skills assessment you should prepare your documents. A lot of information can be found on the VETASSESS website for example if you want to double check that VETASSESS is the correct assessing authority then explore the “Skills Assessment for Migration'' on the home page.
Once you have found your profession on the site it is recommended that you click on the tab “Go to General Occupations” and read through that information if you want to do your own skills assessment and are having problems.
Skills assessments aren’t cheap, particularly if you’re in a rush. To apply as an Australian resident costs AUD $1058.20 and an additional $685.30 for priority processing ($1743.5).
For non-Australian residents the cost is $962.00 and an additional $623 for priority processing ($1585).
A list of required documents can be found here but we will go through them here as well.
Please Note: VETASSESS is under no obligation to reach out to you at any stage of your application. For this reason it is strongly recommended to have all your documents ready and uploaded when you file your application to avoid failing your application because they responded too quickly.
Proof of identity documents:
- One recent passport-sized colour photograph is required. The photograph must be no more than six months old and of good quality (self-taken photographs are not acceptable).
- At least three identity documents one of which must be a primary document:
- Primary documents include passports and birth certificates
- Secondary documents include but are not limited to a National ID, Drivers Licence, Marriage Certificate, Social Security Card, Student ID Card and an Australian Visa.
Name Change documents:
- If you’ve ever changed your name you will need to produce evidence about this to avoid confusion.
If you have a qualification you will require:
- Your award certificate. This would be the awarded degree / certificate / diploma which has your name on it, your qualification name and the awarding authority)
- Your academic transcript. This is the official record from your studying institution of all the courses you studied and your final grades achieved for each.
For an ICT Business Development Manager qualifications in relation to business, business management and IT / ICT would most likely be relevant.
If you are making claims of employment in your skills assessment these will need to be proven for each employment position claimed per year of employment claimed. A lot of documentation is required to prove employment.
For each employer you will require a Statement of Service. VETASSESS provides a template here which it is strongly recommended to use. This statement is from your employer confirming the period of employment claimed as well as other details such as pay rate, hours per week and work duties.
Second you will need Payment Evidence which can include the following:
- At least two payslips (ideally your first and last payslip);
- Taxation Records that show payment summaries and which have the company name and your name;
- Bank Statements showing at least two salary payments, your name and the employer's name; OR
- Employment-linked insurance / superannuation records (bearing company and your name).
Please note, it is important that these documents have your employer's business name or at least the name of a senior figure responsible for employment on it. For example, we have had clients where the applicant was a tradesman and was paid by direct bank transfer from his employer meaning the business name wasn’t on the bank transfers.
This would’ve been a problem however this payor also provided the Statement of Service for the applicant thus associating himself with the business and so the case officer at VETASSESS could identify this. This is just a specific example, there are multiple ways of proving the individual payor represents the employer however you should seek the aid of a migration legal service in these cases or use different documentation.
If you are Self-employed you are required to provide the following:
- Evidence of self-employment such as sole trading or business registration details and /or official statements issued by your (registered) accountant and/or legal team. The statement from your accountant or solicitor must include the accountant's or solicitor's letterhead, your full name, how long you have been continuously self-employed including official dates in each role, the nature of the business conducted, the signature and contact details of the accountant or solicitor. View Employment Reference for Self-Employment template.
- Statutory declaration listing your main duties during self-employment;
- Payment evidence showing regular income from self-employment, such as client invoices together with corresponding bank statements and/ or official taxation records;
- Supplementary evidence, such as contracts with clients or suppliers, client testimonials, evidence of projects completed etc.
Some occupations will require an organisational chart to be submitted. They are listed here. Fortunately for ICT Business Development Manager one isn’t required. The organisational chart should have the company letterhead, your job position and those of your superiors and subordinates as well as all positions reporting to your immediate supervisor and to your direct subordinates.
Finally for certain occupations you will require Evidence of Activities / Portfolio / Projects List. This requires you providing evidence of activity undertaken within the occupation. VETASSESS provides a template for this evidence dependant upon the occupation you are applying to. They are on this page under “6. Employment Evidence”.
For ICT Business Development Manager we are required to use this template which is displayed below. It requires the applicant to provide details on sales they’ve made in this role.
Other Supplementary Employment Evidence:
In addition to the above, other supplementary employment evidence may include:
- Licence or Registration documents and details of the requirements for obtaining the licence or registration
- Evidence of professional development completed during applicant’s employment
- Prizes / Certificates or other forms of commendation
- Evidence of land valuation certificates, sales and purchase receipts and J forms if you are self-employed in India and nominating one of the farming occupations
- Notice of establishment for employment in Iran
In addition, if you are incapable of sourcing official documents for the purposes of the application in some instances a statutory declaration or an affidavit can be substituted in. Keep in mind that assessments cannot be conducted based on the contents of a statutory declaration or affidavit alone. They should be used as a last resort to supplement other documentation for example as a description of official duties where one cannot be officially sourced.
Please Note: A statutory declaration cannot be accepted as evidence of employment dates, position title(s) or as payment evidence - this information should be provided in the form of official documentation.
Curriculum Vitae / Resume:
Finally it is required that you upload your CV which outlines both your education and employment history. This document is critical as those reviewing the application will use it as a point of comparison for most of what is said in the rest of the application.
Please update your CV before making a skills assessment, ensuring its accuracy of dates and names and that your CV is set up specifically for finding work in the occupation you are getting a skills assessment in.
To summarise, for an application for a skills assessment with VETASSESS for 225212 - ICT Business Development Manager you will require:
- Identity Documents
- A Photo
- 3 forms of identity - at least 1 primary
- Name Change Evidence
- Qualification Documents
- Your award certificate - Probablyadegree in business or IT
- Your Academic Transcript
- Employment Evidence - Will have to total 5 years full time with no degree
- Statement of Service for each employer
- Payment evidence for each year of employment claimed
- Organisational Chart - dependant on the occupation (not needed here)
- Evidence of Activities / Portfolio / Projects List - templates provided by VETASSESS
- Other necessary supplementary evidence
- Updated Curriculum Vitae / Resume
Now with all these documents prepared we can begin your skills assessment.
Go to the VETASSESS homepage (displayed below). Click “Apply Online” in the top right corner. You will have to create credentials for yourself and verify them before beginning the application.
Once logged in you will have to select a new application and fill out all the information sections to the best of your ability ensuring the information you provide doesn’t contradict any of your documentation.
There are multiple information sections:
- Personal Details
- General Education
- Tertiary Education
After completing these you’ll come to the document upload section. Here, upload your documents in correspondence to the section they belong to (e.g. upload your Passport to the identity documents).
VETASSES only accepts a single document for each proof category meaning you’ll have to combine your documents for each category. You may even have to compress your pdf file if it is too large which is likely for your employment evidence document as it is usually a large file.
Finally, you will have to review your application then pay for the skills assessment. As stated before, VETASSESS has no obligation to reach out to you regarding an incomplete or incorrect application so please ensure you scrupulously review this application as even just a single typo can result in a skills assessment failing and you wasting your application fee.
Usually this will take a month or so to be reviewed. Once you have your skills assessment you can then use this with your visa application. The visa application process is worth another article on its own, if not a textbook or two. Note that the skills assessments are relevant for 3 years and will need to be renewed.
If you are interested in the VETASSESS skills assessment process and have more questions or if you want to avail professional legal services for your migration needs whether it be a skills assessment, visa application or citizenship application for Australia please contact Comandini Migration Services at email@example.com.
All information in this article is relevant as of the 21st of March 2023