Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS)








Notice – The details of this scheme have been changed in April 2017.  We will update this page as more details come to hand.


Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS) Subclass 186 Visa

The Employer Nomination Scheme (ENS) is for businesses who want to sponsor an overseas worker for a permanent visa to work in their business.

Business Requirements

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.

Three Stream Options

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

  • Temporary Residence Transition stream – for Subclass 457 Visa holders who have worked for their employer for at least the last two years in the same occupation and the employer wants to offer them a permanent position in that occupation.
  • Direct Entry stream – for applicants who have never or only briefly worked in Australia.
  • Agreement stream – for applicants with a Subclass 457 Visa who are being sponsored by an employer through a labour or regional migration agreement.

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.
  • You must have met the Subclass 457 visa training requirements in each year you have been a standard business sponsor.

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:

For an established business (trading in Australia for more than 12 months), you must show you have contributed to the training of Australians, and 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.

For a new business (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.

Contact Us for Advice On Applying to Sponsor a Worker

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