close menu

Australian employer sponsored visas

An employer sponsored visa is available for those wanting to make a permanent move to Australia. It requires an Australian-based employer to sponsor you.

Temporary Work (Skilled) visa (subclass 457)

Australian or overseas businesses may sponsor and employ staff from abroad with this visa. The success of your visa application relies entirely upon your potential employer’s sponsorship. This visa is only available to people who work in occupations that appear on the Consolidated Skilled Occupations List (CSOL).

This visa will allow you to work in Australia for up to four years as well as bring your family to work or study in Australia. The subclass 457 is a temporary visa that can lead to permanent residency via subclasses 186 or 187.

Standard business sponsorship (SBS)

Businesses who wish to employ workers from another country first need to obtain an SBS to make use of the 457 visa. As each application is assessed by the Department of Immigration and Border Protection, Australian companies who wish to sponsor international applicants need to show that they are legally trading in Australia and have processes in place to train local employees.

Overseas businesses with plans to expand their business in Australia, or with contracts to fulfil in the country, are also able to apply for an overseas business SBS. If granted these foreign companies can make use of the Temporary Work (Skilled) visa. The companies must declare that they have been unable to find a suitable local worker from the Australian work force.


Employers must select the role that needs to be filled from the defined list of skilled occupations. All nominated roles need to meet certain minimum criteria relating to salary and skill level.

Once a role is selected, immigration authorities will evaluate the nomination and determine whether it meets their criteria. As nominations are thoroughly examined, it is important that applications are well-prepared and correctly completed.

Visa application

When applying for the visa, and after they have been sponsored by an employer, the prospective employee needs to show that they have the necessary skills, qualifications and experience to fulfil the duties of the nominated role. Due to the relative speed of processing, the 457 visa is one of the more popular visa systems.

Employer Nomination Scheme visa (subclass 186)

This visa is for skilled workers from outside Australia or skilled temporary residents, such as 457 visa holders, who live and work in Australia. These applicants usually hold positions that appear on the CSOL.

The Subclass 186 has three visa streams:

1. The Temporary Residence Transition stream

This is for applicants who are currently in Australia on a 457 visa and have worked for their employer for at least two years. The employer must sponsor the applicant’s permanent residence visa application.

2. The Direct Entry stream

Applicants who are outside of Australia and who have never, or have only briefly, worked in Australia will take this route. A positive skills assessment is necessary to obtain this visa.

3. The Agreement stream

This stream is for applicants who are sponsored by an employer through either a labour or regional migration agreement.

As the 186 visa is a permanent residence visa, it is the end goal of many 457 visa holders.

Additional criteria for the Employer Nomination Scheme (subclass 186)

When applying for this visa, you will be assessed on a number of different factors, including age, English language ability, training, health, character and what the market salary rates are.

Employer Nomination Scheme subclass 186

Unlike the temporary 457 visa, the Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS) 186 is a permanent residence visa. The ENS has two main streams:

Temporary residence transitional stream

This is for people who have lived in Australia on a 457 visa for two years and have worked in their same nominated occupation, with the same employer and have an offer of permanent employment.

This is the usual progression for people who have worked in Australia for two years and want to obtain permanent residence.

Direct entry stream

This is for people who have not worked for two years on a 457 visa but have an employer that wants to permanently employ them.

The applicant must have passed a skills assessment and have a minimum of three years of post-qualified work experience. The prospective employee can be outside or inside Australia at the time of the application.

Additional criteria

Applicants are assessed on other factors such as age, English language ability, training, health, character, market salary rates, work place relations laws, and other factors.

We have dealt with a wide variety of employee nominated visas and can assess your eligibility to determine if you qualify for the Employer Nominated Scheme. If you do not qualify we can advise you on what you need to do in order to qualify.

Are these not the correct visa options for you? We can help you with other Australian visa options such as Skilled Migration visas, Partner visas and Parent visas.

South Africa

Cape Town

Regent Square
Doncaster Road
Kenilworth 7708 +27 (0) 21 657 2120


201 The Annex
Ridgeside Office Park
Umhlanga +27 (0) 31 536 8843

United Kingdom


Castlewood House
77/91 New Oxford Street
WC1A 1DG +44 (0) 20 7759 7514


5-7 Selsdon Road
South Croydon
CR2 6PU +44 (0) 20 7759 7581



9 Yarra Street
South Yarra
VIC 3141 +613 (0) 8651 4500

Sable International is a trading name of 1st Contact Money Limited (company number 07070528), registered in England and Wales. We are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority in the UK (FCA no. 517570), the Financial Services Conduct Authority in South Africa (1st Contact Money [PTY] Ltd - FSP no. 41900) and hold an Australian Financial Services License issued by ASIC to deal in foreign exchange (1st Contact Group - AFS License number 335 126).

Please note: Sable International is a trading name of Philip Gamble and Co. Ltd. Philip Gamble and Co. Ltd is registered in the UK with the Office of the Immigration Service Commissioner (OISC) under no. F2001-00004. Our staff based outside of the UK are not regulated by the OISC and may be involved in some client casework. However, they work to the same high standards as our UK staff and clients receive the same service regardless of which office they engage with.

This site uses cookies, read more or close this notice.