Skills Shortages in Australia – The List To Help You Land Your Permanent Residency

Every year, the Australian government releases a list of skilled occupations experiencing a skills shortage on a national level. If you’re a jobseeker coming from overseas, this is your ticket into the Australian labour market and the associated benefits for your visa application.

While the number of total visas has been reduced and processing times can be lengthy, if you have a skilled occupation you could be in luck!

Australia’s average salary compared to its cost of living is very attractive, so be aware the competition can be steep. Australia has seen significant numbers of settlers from the UK, Ireland and Europe. However, recently it’s also seen a new wave of immigration from skilled workers in India, China and Southeast Asia.

How does the skills shortage list work?

The list is issued by the Australian Department of Home Affairs (DoHA). The list includes a number of occupations, with details on which visas they can be applied to. The government also issues a quota or an ‘occupation ceiling’, which is the total number of applications for each individual occupation. This ensures they get an even distribution of applications across different skills and industries, without a small number of occupations dominating the process. Once the occupation ceiling for a given role is hit, the government will no longer let you submit an ‘expression of interest’ (EOI) to start the skills-based visa process.

For 2020-2021, there are a total of 674 jobs on the list. We’ve listed some of the top ones that may be relevant to you below. Please note, our list just covers some broad roles. There are also some very specific positions and skills on the list, so be sure to search your occupation if you don’t see it here.

  1. Healthcare – nurses, physiotherapists, acupuncturists, health and welfare service managers, midwives, occupational therapists, psychologists, social workers, other medical practitioners
  2. Science & Technology – software developers, aircraft engineers, electronics engineers, industrial engineers, mechanical engineers, production engineers, medical laboratory scientists, environmental scientists, civil engineers, motor mechanics, IT systems analysts, agriculture specialists, farmers, other engineering professionals
  3. Trades & construction – plasterers, joiners, carpenters, builders, plumbers, tilers, brick layers, stone masons, architects, landscape architects, other trades professionals
  4. Hospitality – accommodation/hospitality managers, chefs
  5. Business, Law & Finance – accountants, auditors, secretaries, corporate treasurers, business analysts, solicitors, management consultants, other specialist managers
  6. Arts – media producers, artistic directors, actors, other arts professionals
  7. Education – teachers, special education teachers, early childhood teachers, lecturers, tutors, sports coaches

You can go to each occupation to find what they typically require for an application. Often the applicant must have had previous experience or a qualification showing their competency in their chosen area.

The Department of Jobs & Small Business regularly reviews the list and responds to the changes in the labour market. Don’t worry if you apply and then your occupation is removed from subsequent lists; this does not affect a pre-existing application.

If you want more information about how these occupations can be used to apply for a variety of different visas, please contact the Yonder team.

Want more help looking for a job in Australia?

Finding a job can be hard, particularly in a new country. The Yonder team is here to help. We have plenty of informative articles for you to read, including our Guide to the Cost of Living in Australia.

Our Cost Of Living series also looks into specific Australian destinations. These city by city guides will give you an insight into affordable places to live in each of the state capitals. Find out how much you’ll part with to live in Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide, Brisbane and Darwin.

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