Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS) (Subclass 186) Visa

The Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS) enables employers to sponsor highly skilled workers to fill the spots they are not able to fill through Australian labour market. Skilled workers can be recruited either from overseas, or from people on temporary visas in Australia. Employers must be lawfully operating in Australia, and the position must provide full time employment in Australia for at least three years and meet the Market Rate of Salary Level as well. You can apply through SkillSelect if you do not have an employer in Australia – Australian employer may contact you offering the position if they wish.

If you do not already have an Australian employer willing to nominate you, you can lodge an Expression of Interest through the DIBP Skill Select database. This will allow  prospective employers and also  State/Territory Governments to view your details and offer nomination.

Basic Requirements

To be eligible for this visa, you will need:

  • An Australian employer
  • A highly skilled eligible occupation.

The details for obtaining a visa under the Employer Nomination Scheme is summarised below.

  • Employer Nominates the position that they want to fill
  • Employer finds a suitable overseas employee who is willing to work for them in Australia
  • Applicant accepts the offer of employment from the nominating employer.
  • Applicant applies for a visa and meets any conditions on their visa (when approved).

The nomination must be approved before the visa can be granted. The nomination application should be lodged before or at the same time as the visa application. If the nomination application is lodged first, the visa application must be lodged within six months of the nomination approval date.

Eligibility requirements for the employee of Employer Nomination Scheme (subclass 186) visa are as follows:

  • have an employer’s nomination for a position that relates to an occupation listed on the Employee Nomination Scheme Occupation List (ENSOL)
  • have your skills assessed as suitable for the nominated position by the relevant skills assessing authority, unless exceptional circumstances apply, have at least three years full-time work experience in the occupation and have a competent English before the visa application is lodged or have already worked for your nominating employer for two years in the nominated occupation holding 457 visa in Australia and have a vocational English

You must also:

  • have an employer who is willing to sponsor you for permanent residency
  • demonstrate that you have the appropriate skills, qualifications and/or experience to fill the position
  • meet any mandatory licensing, registration or professional membership requirements that allow you to work unsupervised and without further training
  • be under 50 years of age
  • provide a letter of appointment or a contract signed by both the employer and yourself

Method of demonstrating competent or vocational English language ability includes:

  • Evidence of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS) score of at least 6 for each of the four test components (speaking, reading, listening and writing) for Competent English and at least 5 for each of the four test components (speaking, reading, listening and writing) for Vocational English. The IELTS test must have been undertaken within 36 months of the day of lodging an application

Eligibility for Employers for ENS186

To sponsor an employee in the Employer Nomination Scheme, the employer must:

  • be actively and lawfully operating a business in Australia
  • have a genuine need for a paid employee to fill a position in their business
  • follow all relevant Australian laws and have a satisfactory record of meeting immigration laws (if applicable)
  • have a current training strategy for existing Australian employees, or if a newly established business, have a training plan for future training of Australian employees.

Position requirements

The position you are sponsored for must meet the following requirements:

  • be full-time, ongoing and available for at least three years
  • provide working conditions that are no less favourable than provided for under the relevant Australian legislation and awards
  • be a highly skilled occupation that is on the Employer Nomination Scheme Occupation List (ENSOL)

Note: An employer cannot nominate a position which does not relate to an occupation on the Consolidated Sponsored Occupation List (CSOL)

  • meet the market rate of salary level

What can I do with this Visa?

This visa allows you and any dependent family members included in your visa application to live as permanent residents in Australia.

  • live and work in Australia on a permanent basis
  • study in Australia at school or university
  • receive subsidised healthcare through Medicare and the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS)
  • access certain social security payments
  • be eligible to apply for Australian citizenship later
  • further sponsor people for permanent residence.


Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (RSMS) (Subclass 187) Visa

Regional Sponsored Migration Visa is a way for Australian employers located in regional or low population areas to sponsor employees who are foreign nationals for a permanent visa to work in Australia. You can apply through SkillSelect if you do not have an employer in Australia – Australian employer may contact you offering the position if they wish.

Basic Requirements

This visa is for employers operating in a regional and low population growth area of Australia, who want to sponsor skilled workers to fill skilled vacancies in their business.

  • Applicants should be offered a full time position for at least two years.
  • Applicants should be under 50 years of age.
  • Applicants should be of sound healthy and good character.

The application process for obtaining this visa can be summarised as below:

Who Responsibility
  • Nominates the position they want to fill
  • Certification by the relevant Regional Certifying Body.
  • Approval for the position from the concerned department.
  • Recruitment of overseas workers.
Certifying Body(RCB)
  • Scrutinize the nominations by employers against specific criteria.
  • Certification of the nomination if all criteria are met.
  • Acceptance of employment
  • Visa application
  • Meet the required criteria on their visa if approved.

What can I do with this visa?

  • Live and work in Australia on a permanent basis
  • Study in an Australian school or college
  • Get subsidized healthcare through Medicare and Pharmaceutical Scheme (PBS)
  • Access social security benefits.
  • Dependent family members can stay with you permanently.
  • You can be eligible for Australian citizenship in the future.