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Working in Australia

Discussion in 'General Business Forum:' started by Mitch, Jul 18, 2010.

  1. Mitch

    Mitch Member


    I'm new to this forum, but I was wondering whether anyone has either looked into working as a graphic designer in Australia, or is currently in that position? I've been looking at the Australia emigration website and graphic designer is not featured on their SOL (Skilled Occupation List). The climate is very appealing but I have no idea what design industry is like out there.

    Any advice or shared experiences would be appreciated.


  2. djb

    djb Member

    I’ve looked into it briefly, saw it was going to be tricky and gave up.

    As far as I know if you’re over 30(?) it’s tricky. If you’re under 30 you can get a working visa for a year, get a job and hopefully get sponsored by your employer for residency or marry a local.

    I may be getting this confused with New Zealand but like I said I looked into it briefly and got thoroughly disheartened. Do let me know if you find out more though.
  3. Mitch

    Mitch Member

    Unfortunately I am on the cusp of 30, so I've missed the boat on that one.

    I had a look at the Aussie Government Department of Immigration site and they have a Australian Skills Recognition Information list. Graphic design is on there but it's not really one of the skills they're really eager to accommodate - they're on then aforementioned SOL. I guess the only way to know for sure is to contact them, and I think you're evaluated on your individual skills anyway.

    Will let you know if I find out anything else. But yes, a little disheartening - it just sounds brilliant out there!
  4. bigdave

    bigdave Moderator Staff Member

    Weve looked at Oz and it seems fairly straight forward and Designers are on the SOL list (you just have to look at the list a little sideways). The wages seem slightly higher but from what Ive read, so is the cost of living. although 30+ can be a minus, the length of experience you have in your profession is a massive plus (you earn more points for 6 years experience than you lose for being 31 etc..). Something else that goes in your favour is family, if youre married with young children thats another stack of points! I dont know how hard the work is to come by but I'd imagine it'll be no harder or easier than the UK.
  5. Ben Ja Min

    Ben Ja Min Member

    This is the EXACT boat i am in at the moment - however I am trying for Canada. Basically in January this year i applied for my 1 year working Visa, which i now have. As of October the 6th i am off to Vancouver and basically it is a case of finding a job and getting sponsored! Who knows if it will happen but at the end of the day if you don't try you will never know!
  6. Mitch

    Mitch Member

    Cheers Big Dave. I'll have another "sideways" glance at the SOL. I've only been in the industry 2 years, so I don't fancy my chances! Although my cousin is moving out there - don't know if that'll count. It's kind of a long-term aspiration, so will have to build up some more experience.

    Ben Ja Min, good luck in Vancouver. That sounds really exciting. Like your work by the way - had a butchers at your website.
  7. Ben Ja Min

    Ben Ja Min Member

    Thanks bud! The best of luck for getting out to OZ!
  8. bigdave

    bigdave Moderator Staff Member

    It seems theyve reassesed the SOL recently which adds more confusion to things. If youre eligable for a transitional arrangement then Graphic Design is on the SOL and youve got till 2013 to get your application in. If not then Graphic Design seems to have vanished from the list. I cant find anything that actually explains who qualifies or what the transitional arrangement is though.

    Think I may have to get over there soon myself! mrs bigdave's got family there so its probably easier for us to get in.
  9. Katedesign

    Katedesign Well-Known Member

    I have a friend 40+ who has just got in. He went as an electrician (which he was) but is working as a photographer - which he was doing part-time here. Had two kids under 9 or 10 and wife is a natropath or some-such-like. They are loving it! If you want to go give it a whirl!
  10. james.walters

    james.walters Member

    Hi Mitch,

    Although you are over 30, as long as you have got a relative there in Aussie, he/she can become your legal sponsor. I have been waiting for my application to go through for one year now. It's taking too long!
  11. bigdave

    bigdave Moderator Staff Member

    Ive been doing some digging around as weve decided to bite the bullet too and the current state of play with regards to visa's for designers is as follows:

    Each state has its own list of required skills as well as the national SOL. The required professions vairy from state to state and are subject to constant change. Because of this, currently the best visa application for us Graphic Designers is a State Sponsored Work Visa. Once the visa is granted you have a moral (but not legal) obligation to to work in that state for a minimum of 2 years. So realistically, you could get a visa from Northern Territory but never actually set foot there and insead fly into Victoria and stay there.

    Now for the downsides....

    A State Sponsored Visa only lasts 5 years (but after 4 years you can apply for Australian citizenship).
    Because of the added complications of the state sponsorship, its better to have a professional do the application for you. Theyre normally solicitors so know the loopholes etc to get your visa approved. Unfortnately they dont do this for free and their services alone will cost around £1500!

    All together, the visa for myself and family (including agency fees) will be around £4200!!

    All the information Ive got has been from Australia migration Theyre very helpful (wouldnt you be for that amount of money) and can all but guarantee to get you into Oz.

    Hope some of this has been of use?
  12. Mitch

    Mitch Member

    Wow! Better start saving! Nice work bigdave, very helpful stuff. So that's the same as a SRS (Skilled Regional Sponsored) Visa?

    So, when you say it's better to have a solicitor do the application for you, do you mean the application to get in in the first place, or the application for Aussie Citizenship after 4 years?

    Also, I wonder of there's a minimum amount of time your relative has to have been resident before they can sponsor you.

    Good luck with your application bigdave, from what James says it seems to take a long time.
  13. bigdave

    bigdave Moderator Staff Member

    We are looking at about £20k to cover everything like visas, flights etc.. You need to prove to immigration that you can support yourself while youre looking for work so the more youve got in the bank, the better!

    The first bit. I dont know how the citizenship application works but cant imagine its as difficult as the Visa bit.

    I think any permanent resident can become a sponsor.
  14. Xenonsoft

    Xenonsoft Active Member

    Hey guys. My names Fred and I used to be on here a while back.

    Resurrecting a very old thread, I wondered on the off chance anyone has had any experience applying to work as a creative (web designer/developer/videographer etc.) in Australia?

    I'm interested in going out there and working for a while, although not really looking to move permanently. I guess my aim is for 1-3 years, although that could obviously change. Noticed this thread in here so thought I'd ask if anyone had any advice on it all.

    I know I can get a working holiday visa, but they limit you to 12 months stay and 6 months per job, I can't imagine too many creative agencies taking on a new worker for such a short period, I may be wrong. In an ideal world I'd work for an employer for 1-3 years, but I'm not sure how easy it is to get this going.

    Anyway, if anyone's got any experience of advice, I'm all ears!

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