457 Visa: Finding a Sponsor?

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457 Visa: Finding a Sponsor?

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Old 01-11-2011, 07:22 PM
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457 Visa: Finding a Sponsor?

Hi, I am a US citizen assisting a couple of Filipino brothers-in-law to find work in Australia, if possible. I thought the 457 visa would be their best chance, but I am very confused about how to locate a sponsoring employer in Australia. And perhaps the 457 visa is not their best choice?

Bro-in-law #1: 24 years old electrician. He had 1 year electrical training through the Philippine governments TESDA course and 4 years of work experience. He is finishing a 3 year associate degree program in a month or so that will let him take the Philippine PRC Master Electrician exam. He is currently doing his last bit of schooling as OJT, a linesman/electrical power worker for a Philippine power company. His English skills are probable IELTS level 5 except for his work area where they are level 6.

He prefers linesman work but has experience in new construction and also in maintenance. He has worked for foreign bosses/employers and has always gotten on well with them, usually called back anytime they need an electrician. I want him to improve his English to at least IELTS level 6 and he wants to get a bit more experience before applying to Australia.

Bro-in-law #2: 22 years old, currently studying for a bachelors degree in hotel/restaurant management with concentration in cooking. The school he attends has a relationship with an Australian trades school so he will also receive an Australian Cookery III certificate upon graduation. While I am not a professional cook/chef, I have taken some courses in the USA and studied cooking on my own. So I have assisted him with basic skills, taught him to make pretty good ice cream, a wide variety of pizzas, baking and so forth. The university he attending has pretty good cooking/baking facilities which I toured prior to his enrolling. He will have six months OJT either overseas (Singapore or Hong Kong) or at restaurant and hotel with very good international standards if he does his OJT here in the Philippines.

His English skills currently are likely IELTS 5.5 and will easily be IELTS 6.0 or better by the time he graduates. He lives with me and I work on his English, US style, regularly. I teach English to young Koreans during their school breaks here in Baguio City, so I have a bit of experience with ESL.

I will likely send him to Thailand for a short introduction to Thai cooking after he finishes his bachelors. He may also accompany me at some point, to Australia, where I want to take a short hands-on course in cheese making.

Any suggestions for finding 457 sponsors for these two guys or a better/different visa route will be greatly appreciated. They are both competent and honest, or I would not be helping them. They work hard, try their best, and do not "fake" anything.

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Old 01-12-2011, 04:14 AM
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It is a bit difficult trying to get an employer sponsor from overseas for most trades and Electricians is no different and if anything probably more difficult owing to individual state registration requirements which entail:
. doing an course on Australia/NZ wiring regulations
. working under supervision for 12 months.
It is probably the latter that is a bit of a killer as most people looking for an electrician are wanting someone to work unsupervised and that coupled with most electricians either employed by a small business owner or a contracting company and they are not really interested in sponsoring.
Local employers are probably more interested in people in Australia trained via a normal apprenticeship and I even know of electricians from the UK who even after doing the wiring regulations course have not found it so easy to find work, having come here on an independent visa or as a spouse of someone who has been a primary applicant.
So I'd suggest the best approach for him will first be to see how he goes re having qualifications assessed by TRA , that being a first step for any visa. Trades Recognition Australia - Home then he may want to have a look at what states are offering sponsorship, not that is a guarantee of a job but those states will have a view that shortages could exist and a visa application will have a higher processing priority.
Have a look at states' lists via the 176 visa section and you can find the state registration authorities via A-Z Occupations List - Australian Skills Recognition Information
Also, once he does have TRA approval, he can do no harm in checking out various agencies and a google search under employer sponsorship agencies should find a few and there could be a possibility, the resources sector and now the Queensland floods likely to up demand for skilled people.
I think Immi is going to review the employer sponsorship area re making immigration easier but there'll still be the qualifications standards and registration to be maintained for that is all separate to Immigration.

Re Chefs/cooks/catering, Australia probably has way more than what we need for many years for in recent years a bit of rorting of sorts of the system took place whereby with lobbying and many private colleges set-up to offer courses in things like cooking and hairdressing, there was a lot of recruitment of international students going on overseas by agents working in conjunction with colleges, the potential for permanent residency immigration neing dangled out for the students.
The government eventually got to grips with what was unfolding but not before the horse had bolted somewhat.
There have been many changes made in the past couple of years re skilled visas processing and you can read of some of those changes via the Whats New page linked on above Visa Options page.
But short answer is I suspect there's not much potential for someone in the cooking area and will not be for quite some time.

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Old 01-12-2011, 05:09 AM
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Thank you for your honest and frank reply.

Re the electrician: I had thought about sending him to the TRA or Vetassess process as appropriate. It may be a bit better if he can get some more experience under his belt and improve his general English first. He is capable and honest, taking honors, without connections, in his course work. But I do understand the problem with getting started in Australia and getting up to speed in Australian practices. Perhaps a couple years of work in the Middle East and then we could send him to do a training course in Australia so that he was both more comfortable with Australian codes and Australian English.

Re the Cook: Well, he will be sad to hear this though I am not since I would lose a pizza maker extraordinaire. I had read somewhere that a lot of 457 visas had been yanked or not renewed due to lack of English. I had been hoping that his English language skills along with real training in the field would help open the door.

I may put off my Australian cheese making course until he is closer to his graduation. He can accompany me and take the course too. Then while he is there he can look around for work possibilities. I do not mean that he would work illegally. I am steadfast against that. But I know that it is easier to promote a job if your potential employer can see you.

Even if he can't work, the experience will do him good. My experience is that good chefs, versus simple line cooks, often are invited to work most anywhere in the world. But that would entail him getting some experience in a world class restaurant and building not only skills but a reputation.

I will keep them working on their English and improving their individual skills. It may never come to pass, but I think that Australia would be an excellent place for them and they could make good contributions to the country if given the chance.

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