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cjohnston23

Working Holiday Visas for Professionals?

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Hello Perth Poms,

 

Quick query regarding the employability of a professional on a working holiday visa.

 

As you all are probably aware, a working holiday visa restricts the visa holder to 6 months of work with an employer.

 

  • Would this restriction reduce my chances of employability in my particular field? (Structural/Civil Engineering).
  • Has anyone on this forum gained 6 months (or longer) experience in their field of expertise whilst on a WHV?
  • Can employers potentially extend this 6 months period if need be?
  • If so, could this potentially lead to sponsorship of a permanent visa?

 

Thanks in advance.

 

Craig.

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It is VERY difficult for people on a WHV to get a professional level job, mainly due to the 6 month restriction. Though in the current economic climate in WA, I would say in your occupation it would be very hard no matter what visa you had. There have been bucket loads of engineers made redundant - and, importantly for you, lots of geotechnical engineers who compete for similar roles have been laid off.

 

Employers can not extend the 6 months other than to fully sponsor someone through a 457 or in a couple of very limited ways, which wouldn't apply anyway (some regional farms can have people for 12 months for farm work)

 

Whilst I have seen WHV sponsored previously in professional roles and I have hired them myself, it was always unusual. In the current climate, I would say it isn't going to happen.

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  • Would this restriction reduce my chances of employability in my particular field? (Structural/Civil Engineering).
  • Has anyone on this forum gained 6 months (or longer) experience in their field of expertise whilst on a WHV?
  • Can employers potentially extend this 6 months period if need be?
  • If so, could this potentially lead to sponsorship of a permanent visa?

 

Yes employment conditions for Professional Engineers are currently very mixed, but there may be opportunities for short term contract/project work in particular areas.

 

There are a number of situations where the 6 month limit can be extended. In particular a person working in Northern Australia (Above the Tropic of Capricorn in WA and Queensland, and all of the Northern Territory) in Construction can apply (at least two weeks notice required) for up to 6 months extension with their employer.

 

Cooincidently 'Au Pairs' can apply for a 6 month extension irrespective of their location.

 

Australian experience whether in your professional area or not, is always useful if later on you wish to pursue work opportunities in a sponsored/nominated role. Australian employers are more likely to employ someone who they know has already conducted some serious research on the Australian way of life etc. It is disappointing and expensive for an employer to commit to nominating someone only to find that they are unhappy in Australia. Living and working in Aus for one or two years would allow you to make some useful contacts perhaps.

 

Your dilemma is to decide whether you should stay home and build on your Engineering experience, or to take the plunge, explore new opportunities, but carry the risk of not working necessarily in your professional area. Both paths have pros and cons. All the best whichever way you go.

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