Employer Nomination Scheme (subclass 186)

EmployersAustralian work visa, immigration, Australia

This information explains what is required of you if you want to nominate a skilled worker (and dependent family members
included in their application) for a permanent Employer Nomination Scheme visa (subclass 186).

Which employers can use the program?

You can nominate a skilled worker for this visa if:

  • you actively and lawfully operate a business in Australia
  • you have a genuine need for a paid employee to fill a skilled position
  • you offer a skilled position in the applicant’s field that is full time and ongoing for at least two years
  • you pay a market salary rate
  • you comply with Australian immigration and workplace relations laws
  • there is no adverse information known about your business or any person associated with your business.

You must nominate the applicant in one of the three streams and meet the requirements of that stream.

Temporary Residence Transition stream

Use this stream if you have already sponsored the applicant for a Temporary Work (Skilled) visa (subclass 457):

  • The employee must have worked in the nominated position in your business, on a Temporary Work (Skilled) visa as a primary visa holder, for at least two years before the nomination is made.
  • The nomination must identify an occupation (for the position) that is listed in ANZSCO and has the same four-digit occupation unit group code as the occupation being carried out by the employee.
  • The nominated position must be full time, ongoing and available for at least two years and be consistent with the position in which the applicant has already worked in your business, unless the person nominated was previously nominated for their subclass 457 visa on the basis of performing an occupation mentioned by the Minister of Immigration in an instrument in writing certain medical occupations.
  • You must have met the subclass 457 visa training requirements in each year you have been a standard business sponsor.
  • You must not be an approved overseas standard business sponsor under the subclass 457 visa programme.

If, during the two years prior to nominating, a new standard business sponsorship was required at any stage to ensure the applicant complied with condition 8107 of their subclass 457 visa obligations, you will need to provide evidence that the previous standard business sponsor and yourself as the current standard business sponsor may be considered the same employer of the nominated person.

The period of time already worked with the previous subclass 457 visa standard business sponsor may be considered towards the two-year requirement of the Temporary Residence Transition stream only in those cases where you are able to demonstrate that the nominated person has been working in the same role, with the same employer and in the same location for the whole two years they held their subclass 457 visa.

Direct Entry stream

Use this stream if you want to nominate an applicant to fill a position that is:

You must meet the following training requirements:

  • If your business has been trading in Australia for more than 12 months, you must show you have contributed to the training of Australians. You must meet one of two benchmarks:
    • Training benchmark A:recent expenditure equal to at least 2 per cent of the payroll of the business in payments allocated to an industry training fund that operates in the same industry as the business and a commitment to maintain that level of expenditure for the term of approval as a sponsor
    • Training benchmark B: recent expenditure equal to at least 1 per cent of the payroll of the business, in the provision of training to employees of the business. The expenditure must be expenditure that can count towards the benchmark.
  • If your business has been operating for less than 12 months, you must demonstrate that you have an auditable plan to meet this training benchmark.

Agreement stream

Use this stream to nominate an applicant through a labour agreement that has been negotiated with the government before you lodge the nomination.

When you can enter into a labour agreement

Use this stream to nominate an applicant through a labour agreement that has been negotiated with the government before lodging the nomination.

A labour agreement is a formal arrangement negotiated between an Australian employer and the Australian government. You might consider entering into a labour agreement if there is a genuine and systemic shortage of suitably skilled Australian workers in your industry and/or geographic location, and standard immigration options are not suitable.

A labour agreement comes into effect when it has been signed by all parties involved in the negotiations and is typically valid for three years.

You can use a labour agreement if there is one for your industry or your worker’s occupation. If this does not suit your needs, you can negotiate an individual agreement.

Applying to nominate a skilled worker?

We will tell you about the required documents to prove the claims you make in the application.

After we have the documents ready, we will lodge your nomination.

You will have to pay the nomination charge.

How is the rate of pay determined?

You must provide terms and conditions of employment that are no less favourable than those that would apply to an Australian citizen or Australian permanent resident doing equivalent work in the same workplace.

Terms and conditions include the nominated position’s salary, hours of work and leave entitlements (among other things). The salary paid to an Australian worker under these terms and conditions of employment is known as the market salary rate.

You must prove that you will pay your skilled worker the market salary rate where we will report this to the Department of Immigration and Border Protection. Depending on whether you have an Australian doing similar work, you can do this by:

  • reporting the terms and conditions that apply to an Australian worker who is already employed in a similar job in a similar location in your workplace
  • referring to an industrial award or enterprise agreement that outlines terms and conditions for Australians performing similar work in similar locations
  • providing relevant data from reputable remuneration surveys
  • providing evidence of the salaries of employees performing equivalent work in similar locations.

Are you looking to hire a skilled employee or do you want options for your existing employee?

Contact us for more information.