What’s a Skill Shortage Visa and How Does It Work

Working in a foreign country isn’t something new, but different levels exist. You can get another type of visa depending on where you will be working and the level of work you’ll be doing. The work permit will decide what the employer gets, though. 

In Australia, there are several types of visas that you can get, and one of them is the temporary skill shortage visa. This one isn’t like any other kind of visa you’d get to work in the country. Below are what skill-shortage visas are about and how different they work from the others. 

Basics of Skill Shortage Visa

Before you know how it works and who’s eligible, you need to know the basics about this type of visa. This is a visa that enables employers to address labor shortages. They can bring skilled workers in temporarily if they can’t source the labor from around. 

There are a few types/levels of this visa type too. 

  1. Short-term stream
  2. Medium-term stream
  3. Subsequent entrant 
  4. Labor agreement

Each one of them has different levels of work experience and eligibility. The main idea for them is to address a shortage in the workforce. 


Each tier of the visa has the same essential eligibility criteria that you can use. For example

  • The approved sponsor has to nominate the entrant as a skilled person 
  • Possess the skills to do the job
  • Meet the relevant English requirements set by the state. 

The visa doesn’t simply fall on the lap of a person who wishes to get it. 

What the Visa Cover for the Different Tiers

  • Short-term stream – the most common of all, allows employers to address labor shortages. A holder of this visa will only stay for up to 4 years. The processing time here is around eight months to 11 months. 

You can get the visa at the cost of around A$ 1,290. 

  • Medium-term stream – this one is more of the same as the short-term. It allows the employer to address the labor shortage in their business where they can’t find the right skilled Australian for the job. 

Holders of a Hong Kong passport can stay up to five years. Standard passport holders will only stay under this visa for four years. It will take you up to 8 months to process this visa. It can take five months to process the visa in a shorter period. 

You will need to part with around A$ 2,690 for this visa. 

  • As the name would suggest, a labor agreement is an agreement between the employer and the skilled worker to work in Australia temporarily. And the worker will stay up to four years on this visa, depending on the terms of the agreement. 

You’ll part with around A$ 2,690. 

  • Subsequent Entrant is for the family member of the other visa holders who apply separately. You can stay under this visa for as long as the visa is valid and will cost around A$ 1,290. 

All You Need To Know

Here’s all you need to know about the skilled shortage visa and how they work in general. If you are applying for any of the above, here’s what you need to know before getting into it. 

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