As we alluded to in our last post, we have been dealing with the ‘genuineness’ test and the challenge of helping our clients build strong and compelling applications addressing their need for sponsorship of overseas skilled workers. This has compelled us to use the right side of our brain and be much more creative than usual! As a consequence Gilton Valeo has recalibrated it’s approach toward our advice and our standard processes (including our document checklists).
More frequently we are seeing blanket requests like this regardless of the size of the business:
Please provide evidence demonstrating that the position associated with the nominated
occupation is genuine. This may include:
- evidence that the position fits within the scope and scale of the business,
- evidence that the position is necessary to the operations of the business, please also include details of the activities of the business,
- an organisation chart,
- evidence that the position has been previously occupied and a statement of reasons why it has become vacant, or
- if the position is new, evidence of new contracts secured by the business / business expansion plans / market research
In response to the department’s focus on genuineness, we have been advising clients about context and how best to approach a standard request for genuineness. This blanket approach can be dealt with in a number of ways and this is where an understanding of the business and its inner workings becomes abundantly important.
When dealing with genuineness, we look at the business in its entirety, specifically we:
- assess the size of the business based on industry standards – smaller business’ tend to outsource a lot of functions like accounting whilst larger business’ tend to draw that expertise in house;
- consider the point in the business’ life cycle – is it a start up or well established business?;
- consider the financials and in particular the balance sheet to determine the equity and working capital which may be required to support employment of a senior person or specialist;
- evaluate changes to the turnover from BAS to BAS – has there been a quarter to quarter growth in the business;
- research generic and industry specific staffing profiles – critical third party evidence that provides a compelling argument;
- look at the rationale behind the decision to sponsor an overseas worker – understanding the basic reasoning behind the role is critical to advancing genuineness;
- ask whether there have been any key changes to the business such as new contracts or partnerships;
- look at succession planning and changes to ownership behaviour – a key question when management positions arise within micro businesses;
- determine whether there is any evidence of skill shortages and research independently to locate publicly available data which support sponsorship.
In brief, the solution to genuineness is context. It is providing the immigration department with enough information to understand the nature of the business and the decision making process that led to the application to sponsor an overseas skilled worker. Despite the additional effort and information involved with the application process, clients continue to utilise the subclass 457 visa program to fill shortages and secure international talent.