December 2, 2021

Finding Employers and Work in Australia

A worker and employer shaking hands after the worker is hired for a job

A Foreign Worker Being Hired for a Job

Jobs in Australia

We are often asked if Migration Ways can help people who are not Australian citizens or permanent residents find jobs in Australia. We cannot help anyone find jobs, foreign nationals or Australians. We are solely an Australian immigration agency; our business is to advise, help problem solve, prepare and lodge visa applications for our clients. But we do understand the vital importance of this question about finding work in Australia. All the staff of Migration Ways have worked overseas or are foreign born workers now living in Australia. Migration Ways has therefore prepared the following  tips on how to find work in Australia.

Work Visas Are Needed

First, there is the inescapable fact that must be accepted. All those who are not Australian citizens or permanent residents (excepting New Zealanders, more on that later) need a visa that permits them to work in Australia. Currently two of the most common visas allowing you to work in Australia are the TSS 482 Work and the 186 (Employer Nomination Scheme).

When looking for work in a foreign country, there is a big difference between those people still residing in their homeland and those living in a foreign country. Let’s first discuss the easier option of foreign nationals searching for work while living in Australia.

Australian Networking and Job Sites

Similar to your home country, the best way to find a job is through word of mouth and contacts. If you are in Australia long term, you probably know many Australians as well as citizens from your home country. Network with them. Ask them about any job openings they may know of. Ask a friend to talk to his employer about hiring you. Or more concretely, if you are a chef, for example, talk to other chefs living in Australia and learn which restaurants are seeking to employ chefs, cooks and floor staff. Drop by your local restaurants and talk to the owners. Research restaurants online and call their owners or managers.

There are popular job sites to consult, such as Seek, Career One, Indeed, Job Search and Gumtree. You can also search for job openings and business owners on Facebook and Linkedin. Recruitment agencies may also be an option.  If you are a doctor consider Doctor Connect, and if you are looking for harvest farm work consider Job Search for Harvests. And here for fruit picking jobs.

Overseas and Looking for Work in Australia

It is, obviously, harder and more complex to find work in Australia if you are living offshore. But it can be done. For example, if you have any family or business contacts in Australia, consult with them. Perhaps they can sponsor you or know someone who can. Ask! You can, of course, apply for Australian jobs advertised on the Internet, such as on the job sites noted above, but most employers will want to, at the very least, meet you. You can, however, consider travelling to Australia on a Business visitor visa, which allows you to meet with potential employers and to interview. This visa does not allow you to work, but only to explore work options.

The faces of many men and women who are potential job applicants who could be hired for work

There Could be an Australian Job for You

Skilled Occupations Wanted in Australia!

There is one important thing overseas workers can do by themselves to help them towards finding jobs in Australia. They can check if their occupation is on a skilled occupation list. These are the occupations that the Australian Department of Home Affairs has determined Australia needs because of skill shortages. Check if your occupation is on one of these lists and if it is contact Migration Ways to book a consultation to see what could be the best way for you to move forward to finding a job in Australia.

Also check if your occupation is on the Occupation Ceilings list for the 2019-20 financial year.

Read more about Australia’s Skilled Visas. 

 Working and Holiday Visas for Australia

Arguably, the simplest and best visa option to work in Australia, if you are under 31 years of age, is a Working Holiday visa. Currently the nationals of 39 countries or territories are eligible for these 417 or 462 visas. (Which of these visas you might be able to apply for depends on which country you are from. See the lists of these eligible countries here and here.) Some countries whose citizens are currently eligible for these visas include the United States, Canada, Israel, Italy and the UK. Other eligible countries closer to Australia include China, South Korea, Japan, Thailand, and Taiwan. Please be aware that there is a yearly cap on the number of Working Holiday visas granted.

Working 88 Days in Regional Australia

A Working Holiday visa allows you to work for 12 months anywhere in Australia, with a maximum of 6 months with the one employer. If you want to apply for a second Working Holiday visa, you will need to work for 88 days in regional areas of Australian in specifically stipulated jobs. Having met these criteria, you become eligible to work in Australia for an additional 12 months. One of the great advantages of the Working Holiday visa is that once you have worked with an employer he can consider sponsoring you for a 482 work visa or some equivalent.

Australian Regional Visas

The current federal government is promoting foreign workers to live in Regional Australia. Regional visas are a visa option that may be the answer for many of those wishing to live and work in Australia. There are two Australian regional visas: In late 2019, the 187 and 489 visas was discontinued and replaced by the 491 and 494 Regional visas.

Entertainment Visa

And there are specialty entry visas for specific industries, such as an Entertainment visa for film crew, musicians or sportspeople who have been hired to work in Australia on a temporary basis.

And New Zealanders? Because of the special historical relationship and free trade agreement between New Zealand and Australia, New Zealanders are the only nationality that can automatically enter Australia and work in any field they like.

Your Australian Migration Agents

The above tips are very general and do not cover every Australian visa or entry contingency, nor should they be construed as legal advice. For that, please consult with us. Your future is important and there could be an Australian visa option for you. We can meet with you at our convenient downtown Melbourne office, interface with you on Skype, or talk with you over the telephone. If you do find an Australian employer to sponsor you, Migration Ways can advise you in English, Italian and Spanish. Happy work in Australia!


Read these personal tips from a Migration Ways client about what she had to do after she arrived in Australia, including finding work.

All those who are not Australian citizens or permanent residents need a visa that permits them to work in Australia.

You Need a Visa That Allows You to Work in Australia


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