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10 best NZ companies to work for

Jobs in New Zealand
Overland Footwear is the best company to work for in New Zealand. IBM Kenexa Best Workplaces in New Zealand survey reviewed 243 companies in New Zealand.

Overland was the overall winner as well as winner in the Large Companies category (those employing 400 to 749 staff) in 2013. This was the second year in a row that Overland secured the top position. Overland was a finalist in each of the eight years between 2005 and 2012.

Jobs in New Zealand

Mars NZ drives high engagement culture (Photo: Mars New Zealand)

In the Enterprise category (companies with more than 750 staff), Warehouse Stationery secured the top spot.

In the Medium-Large Workplace Category (150-399 employees), Mars New Zealand was named the best company to work for.

In the Small-Medium Workplace Category (50-149 employees), Giltrap Audi secured the top spot.

In the Small Workplace Category (20-49 employees), Kellog New Zealand got the top honours.

Flight Centre has been a finalist in 10 out of the last 11 years.

TOP 10 WORKPLACES IN NEW ZEALAND

  1. Overland Footwear, fashion footwear retailer
  2. Warehouse Stationery, stationery, technology, art and craft, copy and print, and office furniture retailer
  3. Mars New Zealand, FMCG food manufacturing
  4. Giltrap Audi, luxury car retailer
  5. Flight Centre, international travel agency
  6. VTNZ, vehicle testing and repairs
  7. FMG Advice and Insurance, insurance and financial advisors
  8. Leading Edge Communications, sales channel management company (primarily telecommunications)
  9. Southern Cross Health, health insurer provider
  10. Trade Me, online selling and auction site

What drives these companies?

Employee engagement and participation is the common theme among the companies that are most sought after by job seekers in New Zealand.

Sanchia Yonge, IBM’s GM Smarter Workforce for Australia and New Zealand says, “Year on year we’re seeing more businesses in New Zealand viewing participation as a critical tool to help determine the drivers of business performance.

“The Best Workplaces Survey uncovers the best New Zealand organisations that are creating a Smarter Workforce; one that attracts the best talent, understands their employees and empowers teams.”

News Work Abroad

Less-known NZ job websites to visit

highly skilled jobs in Auckland

Most job seekers are already aware of Seek, and Trade Me Jobs – two of the most popular websites to visit if you are looking for a job in New Zealand. Both these websites publish thousands of jobs every week – and most New Zealand employers advertise on these sites by default.

However, many niche job boards, some of which are run by the government, are equally important or even more crucial if you are looking for a specialist job.

Job seekers should bookmark this page for easy reference.

highly skilled jobs in Auckland

General jobs

Auckland Council jobs

Most job seekers who come to New Zealand choose Auckland as their preferred city to settle in. It multicultural composition, moderate weather add to the attraction of living in a city with most jobs in New Zealand. And Auckland Council is the largest employer in the city, and is also known for hiring new migrants.

The careers section of Auckland Council provides an option to subscribe to their job feed, so that relevant jobs could be emailed to you. This is a good option to consider.

Jobs.govt.nz

One of the largest employers in New Zealand is the New Zealand government, and the hub of the government is Wellington. While Auckland has the most jobs in the country, Wellington has the most-paying jobs in New Zealand. The government sector is also known to have openness to hiring migrants.

Work and Income New Zealand job board

This is the job website maintained by the social benefit department of New Zealand government, especially designed for people who are on benefit and are seeking gainful employment. The website usually lists low-paying jobs, but is a useful resource for new migrants who are struggling to find a job that matches their expectations.

Jobs for new migrants

Since not every migrant is seeking a top-paying job in a glass office, New Zealand offers many low-paying, part-time or seasonal jobs that help new migrants hit the ground running and pay bills as they word towards their dream job.

Seasonaljobs.co.nz
This job board specialises in seasonal job vacancies around New Zealand in many industries.

Seasonalwork.co.nz
Similar to seasonaljobs.co.nz, this website lists short-term work especially in hospitality, agriculture and horticulture.

Working in New Zealand
This website provides a list of key employers and recruitment agencies in various specialist industries and occupations. It is a very useful research website for job seekers.

New Kiwis
This is an initiative by chambers of commerce and is designed to match skilled migrants with appropriate New Zealand employers. Register on this website if you are already in New Zealand, or intend to travel to New Zealand soon.

Workhere New Zealand
Find information on employers and recruitment agencies relevant to the occupation and industry you want to work in.

IT and telecommunications

IT jobs are the most sought after jobs in New Zealand, especially by migrants. IT jobs also pay well, and because the skills are transferable, qualified migrants tend to have a better chance of getting a job in the IT industry than in other industries that rely on soft skills.

Candle New Zealand
Candle is the largest placement agency for IT jobs in New Zealand. The website has many IT jobs to choose from.

Comspek
Compspek is particularly good for contract jobs in IT and telecommunications industry, though they also cater to permanent jobs.

Geekzone
An online technology community with an extensive job listing section.

MCC People
Browse for ICT jobs available through this agency.

Pinnacle Recruitment
An organisation providing a list of vacancies in the information technology and technical electronics sector.

Potentia
Find jobs in the information technology sector.

Searchworks Ltd
A recruitment agency specialising in IT and software engineering jobs.

Top recruitment agencies in New Zealand

While most recruitment agencies list their jobs on Seek and TradeMe Jobs, it pays to register directly with an agency. This helps in arranging a meeting with a specialist from the recruitment agency.

Once you are on their file, they may be able to actively seek job on your behalf. Many times, you may be considered for a job that’s not even listed and advertised.

While the following list is not exhaustive, it covers some of the popular placement agencies in New Zealand.

Adecco  (for engineering jobs)
Advanced Personnel  (for engineering, infrastructure, warehousing and construction jobs)

Beyond Recruitment (for IT, accounting, telecommunications, engineering and government positions)

Enterprise Recruitment (for all sectors)

Fosterra (primarily for South-Island jobs in technical fields)
Frog Recruitment  (for jobs in accounting, IT, human resources and sales)

Hudson  (one of the largest recruiment agencies; has jobs in all sectors)

Kelly

Kinetic Recruitment  (for secretarial and entry-level roles in New Zealand)
Lawson Williams Consulting Group
Martin Personnel
Momentum  (for jobs in PR,  communications, finance, and bicultural employment)

OCG  (for mid to senior level positions)

Salt (for flexible and permanent positions mostly at entry level)

Tell employers you are looking

This is a new crop of websites that provides a platform for jobseekers to profile their skills and make them visible to prospective employers. These websites take out the middleman (recruitment agency) from the hiring process and puts employers in touch with prospective employees. Migrants don’t have to worry about the recruitment agency’s bias, and employers save on hiring costs.

Green Sky

Job seekersc can promote their skills to employers by creating a profile on Green Sky. This website is not only useful for seeking full-time jobs, but also a great place to find assignments as a freelancer or part-time employee.

Similar websites:

I’m Looking
JobCafe

Jobit
This is an online marketplace used by employers looking to outsource project-based work.

For more specialist listings of job websites, visit the Careers website run by the New Zealand government.

Immigration News Work Abroad

Lawyer found guilty of immigration fraud

Work visa
A former New Zealand lawyer  has been found guilty of 93 immigration-related charges at Auckland District Court.

Albany-based Richard James Martin is found guilty of forgery, giving false or misleading information to an immigration officer, and providing immigration advice without immigration license or exemption for license.

Work visa

Between May 2009 and September 2010, the 49-year-old:

  • provided immigration advice to ten families through Richard Martin Immigration Limited
  • forged lawyers’ signatures on immigration documents
  • used licensed immigration advisers employed at his company to “sign off” visa applications of clients they had never met.

Zannah Johnston, prosecuting on behalf of the Crown on charges brought by the Immigration Advisers Authority and Immigration New Zealand (INZ), said: “Licensed immigration advisers were used to sign applications because Mr Martin was unable to.

“Some would say he used the advisers as puppets for rubber stamping. Mr Martin met with each of the clients, not the licensed advisers.

“Mr Martin told clients what the requirements were, what the best times were to make applications, sent letters to the Minister of Immigration and answered questions on how to fill in forms.”

Judge Mary Elizabeth Sharp said: “I found Mr Martin to be a witness of untruth. I am satisfied that he lied throughout his testimony. Ultimately, I am afraid that I reached the conclusion that if it suited him, Mr Martin would swear black was white.”

Mr Martin has been remanded in custody pending sentencing on 1 August 2014 at Auckland District Court.

Charges against Richard James Martin

  • 37 counts of Forgery
  • 35 counts of Supplying False Or Misleading Information to an Immigration Officer
  • 11 counts of Asking for or receiving fees for immigration advice when neither licensed nor exempt
  • Nine counts of Providing immigration advice when neither licensed nor exempt
  • One count of Holding out as an immigration adviser when neither licensed nor exempt

New Zealand law requires that immigration advice must be licensed by the Immigration Advisers Authority, unless exempt. Exempt people include lawyers who hold a New Zealand practising certificate.

Mr Martin previously surrendered his practising certificate.

News Work Abroad

How many deaths before drug laws tightened?

Arun Kumar migrated to New Zealand from Fiji for a ‘safer’ future for him and his family. The morning of Tuesday 10 June 2014 turned out to be his last day in the country that he chose to bring up his children in.

At about 7am, two young boys, aged 12 and 13, entered his dairy as he got ready for early customers. One of the boys fatally stabbed the 57-year old dairy-owner who is now remembered by the community as a “loving, family man”.

Arun Kumar dairy owner killed in Auckland

Only about a fortnight earlier, another migrant fell victim to a vicious attack. Philippines-born Blesilda “Blessie” Gotingco was on her way home from work on 24 May 2014.

As she got off the bus, barely a few hundred meters from her home,  she was attacked by a repeat offender. Her dead body was found by the police search team the next day.

Police arrested a 27-year old man with previous convictions, who was under supervision with an ankle bracelet, says E2NZ website.  The accused was living just 1.4km from Blessie’s home, says the New Zealand Herald.

Arun Kumar’s death has evoked angry reactions (rightfully) from the community.

“We want to send a strong message that this is not acceptable in a country like New Zealand, where people have migrated for the betterment of their family and friends. To die in such a way is really saddening,” a family friend of Arun Kumar told TVNZ.

New Zealand is always considered to be a safer place by migrants coming from civil-strife-ridden countries like Sri Lanka, India, Pakistan, Fiji and Bangladesh.

However, the clean and green image of New Zealand that’s portrayed to prospective migrants often underplays the crime scene in the country. While large-scale organised crime is certainly low, the violent acts of desperate people, often on drugs, claim the lives of unsuspecting migrants who are often seen as easy targets.

The police as well as justice system acts swiftly as it did in Arun Kumar’s case – the accused boys were arrested and brought to court in less than 48 hours. However, Arun Kumar’s death brings up questions about other systemic failures:

1. Did the ambulance respond swiftly enough?

I am reminded of the murder of 29-year old liquor-store owner Navtej Singh in Manukau in 2008, when the police prevented ambulance staff from accessing the dying victim, despite the offending criminals having fled the crime scene. It was alleged that Navtej could have been saved if medical help was allowed in time. A police inquiry found that the 37-minute delay was “undesirable” and cannot be justified.

2. Did the police arrive in time?

We will need to wait for the police report to be made public on this one.

3. Did the parents of the boys raise them well?

Why were the boys on the street instead of in school, and what role did the parents play in their upbringing?

The parents of both boys, aged 12 and 13, are in jail or facing active criminal charges, says a report in the New Zealand Herald. Because the boys are teens, their names are suppressed. The Herald reported that both the parents of the 13-year old murder accused are in jail, and the boy was being looked after by his grandmother. The younger boy’s father too was in police custody this month on violence charges.

“Were the alleged offenders attending school regularly, if not where was the truancy service?” asks Phil Goff, Labour spokesperson for ethnic affairs.

“If his parents were themselves offenders what was being done to try to lead him down a different path? Why are young people able to become petty offenders without enough being done to stop them progressing to more serious crimes as in this case?”

4. What is our role as a community?

Where did we fail? Is our social system protecting ineffective parenting? Are we supporting dysfunctional families on benefits? As they say in Africa, it takes a village to raise a child. This beast (the accused) is a creation of the wider community, says New Zealand Indian Central Association (NZICA) President Harshad Patel, in a report in the Indian News Link. 

By accepting children on the streets during school hours, by supporting parents who do not look after their children and by allowing gangs to proliferate, we are breeding criminals at an alarming pace. The offender knows that human rights exist for his security,” he says.

5. The Drug Issue

The Bigger question: why has New Zealand failed to control its drug problem?

According to the Drug Foundation of New Zealand, New Zealand has some of the higher per-capita drug-use rates in the developed world.

One in six (16.6%) New Zealanders aged 16–64 years had used drugs recreationally in the past year, according to the 2007/2008 New Zealand Alcohol and Drug Use Survey.

It gets even worse – at least half of New Zealanders (49%) have used drugs at some point in their life – excluding alcohol, tobacco and even party pills.

The situation is bleak with our children – one in three children (below 18 years of age)  report drinking alcohol on more than three occasions in the past month.

One in four (24%) children of 16-17 years of age report using cannabis in the last year.

Substance abuse is a double-edged sword – it influences senses, and it creates thirst for immediate money and gratification.

Vulnerable migrants

This addiction is not only spoiling the future of a beautiful country, it is also exposing its most vulnerable communities – ethnic and migrant groups – to some of the most hideous and violent crimes in the country.

Denied equal job opportunities, migrants usually find themselves in ‘dangerous’ professions (in New Zealand):

Too often ethnic communities working in retail and service businesses were on the front line of crime, says Phil.

Sometimes, migrants don’t even need to be in a dangerous profession. Merely walking down the street could be fatal as 25-year old Indian student, Tarun Asthana, found out on 4 November 2013 after being punched to death outside McDonald’s in downtown Auckland.

In January 2014, Praveet Chahal was attacked by a bottle-wielding man on an Auckland street just a few meters away from her home. As she lay bleeding on the ground, she cried out for help, but none of the by-standers stepped in.

Indian attacked in Auckland

Praveet Chahal was viciously attacked by a stranger on an Auckland street as by-standers looked away. (Photo: Praveet Chahal)

Praveet suffered a broken nose, a fractured eye socket, extensive bruising and a big setback to her confidence. “I have never felt this violated in my entire life, for once in my life feel that my freedom has been taken away,” says Praveet in a Facebook post. The offender was on bail.

“In broad daylight (I) was attacked by an intoxicated pyscho who beat me up in front of more than 15 Fiji Indians who stood and watched the entire ordeal like they were watching some show while I screamed and yelled for help.

However, Praveet has regained her confidence and her faith in humanity. “I am still working towards bringing awareness so that people feel safe and get their independence and confidence back.

Migrants are easy prey as they are least likely to put up a fight, are struggling to adjust to new legal and cultural systems, are desperate to succeed and would like to stay out of trouble at any cost.

Police issue

High-crime areas in Auckland and around New Zealand are known to the law enforcing authorities. However, limited policing resources put our communities in these high risk areas in danger.

If the government kept cutting the budget for police in real terms that we would invite more crime by lowering the risk to criminals that they would be caught, says Phil.

“In Henderson, other shopkeepers told us they wanted a community police station and a more visible police presence in the shopping centre,” says Phil.

“They also told us that out-of-control young kids have been a problem in the community for quite a long time – kids that beat up other young people, shoplifted, pestered the public for money and painted graffiti.”

With elections approaching, the voters will have crime and safety at the top of their mind. Any government that concerns the safety of its people would stand a good chance of winning the trust and vote.

Business Lifestyle Money News Work Abroad

Can you save $2550 by carpooling?

The week beginning 9 June marks Kiwi Carpooling Week in New Zealand, and Auckland Transport wants to encourage drivers to consider car-pooling as an environment-friendly gesture which also saves money.

carpooling effect

I asked Auckland Transport – does carpooling really save money? Do they have any numbers to support the claim?

Auckland Transport believes carpooling helps us in saving costs of petrol and parking.

And these savings can be as high as $2550 a year.

They provided some numbers:

If two people carpooled for a 15km journey, this is what their daily costs would look like:

  • Petrol prices = $1.50 each
  • Parking cost = up to $9 per day each
  • Total daily cost = $21 for two people
  • Savings per person = $10.50 per day; $52.50 per week (carpooling 5 days); $210.00 per month (carpooling 5 days a week for 4 weeks); $2,550 per year

Yes, you could save up to $2,550 annually by carpooling, and put that saving into paying off your mortgage sooner.

Auckland Transport has even provided an online cost calculator so you can figure out how much you could save – www.letscarpool.govt.nz

But what’s the biggest hurdle to carpooling? Timing. Each person has their own time to go to work and come back from work. Also, because of the location constraint, commuters are limited to consider their own work colleagues as co-passengers, which also means you would typically carpool with people you get along with.

Auckland Transport helps you with the first part of this problem – finding a car buddy.

You can visit the site to find people living and working near you who are looking to join a carpool, or talk to you friends and colleagues about setting up your own.

Just put the starting point, destination and journey date and the website will find suitable rides for you.

Already, nearly 5000 Aucklanders have signed up on the website for carpooling, which increases your chances of finding the right carpooling partner.

What if you don’t find someone that lives nearby and works near your workplace? You will need to be a bit flexible.

You don’t need to carpool all the way to work. Consider sharing a car to a central place, and jumping on a train or bus from there.

Also look at the larger picture. With more people carpooling, there will be fewer cars on the road, less traffic congestion, and less pollution.

And there is the benefit of human interaction, instead of shuffling through mundane radio stations.

Having another person in the car makes your journey more enjoyable and interesting, says Auckland Transport’s Manager Community Transport Matthew Rednall.

Need more reason to carpool? “Another benefit of having two people in the car is that you can use some transit lanes.”

Carpooling could be a good opportunity to network with other professionals which could open up doors for the next big job opportunity or business potential.

Immigration News Opinion Work Abroad

OPINION: Immigration policy may stall growth in NZ

ImmigrationAttorney

 

Migrate to AustraliaNew Zealand’s xenophobia, rather its politicians’ attempt to capitalize on xenophobia, has raised its ugly head again.

This time it is Labour leader David Cunliffe, who has blamed migrants for housing crisis and has suggested putting brakes on immigration following Treasury’s prediction that net migration may cross the 40,000 mark very soon.

If Cunliffe has his way, New Zealand could curb the projected migration levels of 40,000 to just in the “zone of between 5,000 and 15,000”.

Cunliffe wants “enough new migrants to fill our skill gaps but not so many that it overwhelms our housing market or the ability of our schools and our hospitals to cope”.

How convenient! Has he done research to learn about the number of migrants serving in New Zealand’s healthcare sector?

In the case of hospitals, he seems to be forgetting that without migrants as staff at all levels, they would gradually grind to a halt, says the NZ Herald columnist Brian Rudman.

It reminded me of the early years of 2000s, when net migration was as high, and there was a wide-spread feeling of resentment against migrants – Asians specifically, as they look and sound different.

However, those were the times when New Zealand economy was growing at a record rate of 3% to 3.5%. Individual incomes were high; people had steady jobs and spending rate was comparable to most developed countries.

We don’t have the same scenario now. The leading economies of the world haven’t recovered from the historic recession, with no clear signs of better days ahead.

This is a time to make the most use of available resources and bat on, so that New Zealand economy is able to create a distinct competitive advantage on global platform, despite its geographic remoteness and small market size.

This is possible by attracting the best talent from around the world in face of growing competition for talent from bigger economies like the US, the UK, Canada and of course, our fortunate cousin Australia.

Instead, policymakers like Cunliffe are busy finding ways to protect the sentiments of homegrown Kiwis, and ride on the anti-migrant wave.With elections around the corner, and poor voter perception, Cunliffe seems to be trying everything he could to revive his campaign.

However, let’s not politicize the issue.

If Asian population is expected to hit 800,000 in another decade, then it should be seen as an opportunity, not threat.

Let’s not drive skill-based migration, which benefits a few cities like Auckland, at the cost of other regions.

Auckland is a major winner from the government’s skilled-based immigration policies, says analyst Rodney Dickens of Strategic Risk Analysis Ltd.

“Wellington and Canterbury benefit to a moderate extent, while Canterbury benefits form the rebuilding-related skill-based policy.  All other regions are double losers as a result of the skilled-based immigration policies,” says Dickens in his latest report (PDF).

“Skill-based immigration policies would appear to be great at ensuring the largest group of immigrants, excluding Kiwis returning form OE, offer skills that fit with the evolving economy.

“However, the evolving economy and the skilled-based immigration policies both favour large urban centres over other centres.  This is having a significant impact on regional economic growth, retail spending, residential building and house prices.

“Restricting where immigrants can live would be self-defeating.  In time many skilled immigrants would end up filtering to the major urban centres even if they were originally restricted to living in provincial towns and cities.”

Dickens recommends an immigration policy that puts less emphasis on skills and gives more importance to hard work.

“If the criteria were relaxed to include hard-working people with lower formal
qualifications, it would create a more balanced playing field from a regional perspective,” argues Dickens.

“If this were done it would allow regions with smaller urban centres to better compete in part because they offer much more affordable housing costs compared to income levels than the large urban centres.”

“It would allow regions with cheaper housing costs to compete for immigrants on a much more equal footing with regions dominating new economy job creation.”

Immigration News Work Abroad

Can I keep Indian passport after becoming NZ citizen?

Many Indians in New Zealand continue to hold Indian passports after becoming New Zealand citizens – either out of ignorance or willful intention (claiming ignorance).

work visa new zealand

The Indian High Commission in New Zealand has appealed to such Indians to surrender their Indian passports.

“Of late, many cases have been coming to the notice of this High Commission where the applicants have not surrendered their Indian Passports within three years of acquisition of New Zealand citizenship,” says the announcement on the High Commission’s website.

“In some cases, the applicants have gone even further and used the Indian passports for travel after acquisition of foreign nationality.”

People often confuse PIO status with dual citizenship. This is not true.

The Indian Citizenship Act 1955 does not allow dual citizenship.

It is a serious offense to retain Indian passport after acquiring citizenship of another country.

The Indian Passport Act 1967 says:

“Holding Indian passport/acquiring Indian passport/travelling on Indian passport after acquisition of foreign citizenship constitutes an offence under the Indian Passport Act, 1967, and attracts penalties.

The Government of India has prescribed imposition of penalty on a graded scale, depending on number of trips made on Indian passport after acquiring foreign nationality, for the violation of Passport Rules and retention of Indian Passport for more than 3 years after acquiring of foreign nationality.”

If you have violated the above provisions, then you will need to surrender you Indian passport and pay appropriate penalty to the Indian High Commission in New Zealand.

The Wellington-based High Commission has no authority to waive off such penalties.

Like any other law, the Indian Citizenship Act as well as Passport Act does not pardon such errors on account of ignorance of law.

If you have acquired New Zealand citizenship, you are required to cancel your Indian passport without delay to avoid higher penalties.

The Indian High Commission website contains a table that shows how much penalty you would be expected to pay.

Besides, if you haven’t surrendered your Indian passport, you will find it difficult to get visa for your dependent children. Indian origin parents with New Zealand citizenship will need to provide evidence of cancellation of Indian passport, for obtaining visa for their minor children.

Once you surrender your Indian passport, you will travel on your New Zealand passport and may need a visa to visit India. To avoid this hassle, many New Zealand citizens of India origin opt for a PIO card.

How is PIO card different from dual citizenship?

Beginning September 2002, India introduced PIO scheme of people of Indian origin living outside India.

The PIO card is like a long-term visa. With PIO card, which stands for Persons of Indian Origin, you don’t have to apply for a visa to visit India.  Valid for 15 years, The PIO card scheme enables a person of Indian origin, up to the 4th Generation down, as also spouses of such persons to apply for and obtain a PIO card.

The PIO card is given to up to 4th generation down. So if your great grandparents were citizens of India, you are still eligible for a PIO card.

Even spouses of PIOs, who may not be of Indian origin, are eligible to obtain a PIO card.

However, India specifically excludes citizens of its neighboring countries like Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bhutan and China, and those of high-risk countries like Afghanistan and Iran from obtaining a PIO card.

 Benefits of a PIO card

In addition to visa waiver, PIO card offers many other benefits:

  1. All foreign nationals (including foreigners of Indian origin) visiting India for more than 180 days (whether for study, research or employment) need to register with the Foreigners Regional Registration Officer (FRRO) within 14 days of arrival. PIO card holders don’t have to register until 30 days prior to the expiry of the initial 180-day period in India.
  2. PIOs can buy, hold, transfer and dispose of immovable properties in India. This applies to residential as well as commercial properties.
  3. PIO children can study in India’s medical colleges, engineering colleges, IITs, IIMs under the general categories like resident Indians.
  4. There are special counters at the immigration check posts for PIOs.

PIOs however don’t get voting rights, cannot contest elections for any political position in India, neither are they allowed to buy agricultural land.

How much does a PIO card cost?

PIO card fees is NZ$695 for adults, and it is valid for 15 years. If your New Zealand passport expires before the expiry of your PIO card, you can still travel on your existing PIO card which contains old passport number. However, India’s Bureau of Immigration advises to have necessary endorsement of the new passport from the competent authority on their PIO cards “to avoid any inconvenience”.

Overseas Citizen of India (OCI) status

OCI status is given to those Indians who once were citizens of India (or were eligible to be Indian citizens), and have now surrendered Indian citizenship in favor of a foreign citizenship. OCI is different from PIOs in that PIO card is also issued to spouses and children even if they were never a citizen of India.

Immigration News Work Abroad

These 10 CV mistakes may cost you a dream job in NZ

Your resume is your first step at a prospective employer’s door. Vaibhav Gangan shares common resume mistakes to avoid.

CV writing tips

Top 10 resume writing tips (Photo: The Italian Voice)

In this age of information overload, getting the job you desire is not as straightforward as it used to be, even if you have the required skills and qualifications. Companies are looking for solution-providers, not just highly-skilled individuals.

While writing your resume, please keep in mind these CV tips and avoid these common mistakes.

Mistake 10: Being vague

Is your resume full of flowery words, adjectives and adverbs that say a lot and mean nothing? Be specific. Give examples. Mention figures and statistics. Don’t write “improved sales“, say “grew revenue by 8% by increasing sales from 180,000 units to 248,000 unites in financial year 2014.

Mistake 9: Beating around the bush

While writing opening statement/career objective, don’t be shy to say which position you are applying for and why you are suitable for that position. State the obvious up front. Don’t leave the recruiter wondering why he should hire you. Again, be specific. List the skills and experience that are directly relevant to the position you are applying for.  In fact, don’t bother writing an objective. This usually doesn’t add any value to the recruiter. Use that space to write your summary as mentioned above.

Mistake 8: Grammar errors, sloppy style and spelling mistakes

Check for typographical errors and spelling mistakes. Remove unnecessary exclamation marks and other symbols. Don’t use special characters. Don’t use multiple colors and multiple fonts. Keep it simple in formatting as well as language. Since you have written and re-written your resume many times, you may not spot some errors. Get someone else to proof-read your CV.

Mistake 7: Sloppy style and inappropriate tone

Review your resume as a third person. Is your tone style lazy? Does the passion show through your tone?  Is your resume easy on the eye? Use bullet points. Avoid jargon (yes!). Don’t use acronyms which are specific to your current company. For e.g., “Delivered SIP project while meeting TPA deadlines.”

Mistake 6: Whistler

Don’t list hobbies and interests that are irrelevant to the position applying for. For example, whistling as an interest is not important unless you are applying for a music teacher’s position.

Mistake 5: References

Should you include references or not? Unless you are applying for graduate jobs, or entry-level jobs, references are not needed at the application stage. There is no need to say “references available on request”. Of course, certain employers specifically ask for references with CV, in which case you should provide references that are ready to endorse you. Make sure you have briefed your referees.

Mistake 4: Passive

Some CVs are so passive that recruiter almost stops reading after the first few lines. This happens especially when the candidate is low on self-confidence, or shy to express achievements. Your resume should reflect your achievements, and you can legitimately boast of your work here. List the specific challenges you faced and the results you achieved, and how your work helped your company.

Mistake 3: Personal information

A recruiter is rarely interested in your marital status, date of birth. You can leave out these details.

Mistake 2: Getting adventurous with structure

There’s a widely-accepted structure for CVs and resumes around the world. Stick to it and don’t re-arrange sections randomly. The most popular template of a CV/resume includes, in this order: professional summary, education, experience, skills, awards/achievements, professional accreditation, and interests.

Mistake 1: Generic resume, and resume without cover letter

This is the most common and most suicidal mistake that could cost you your dream job – sending the same CV to all recruiters. Your resume must be tailored to the specific job. I don’t mean window-dressing your CV or adding false information there. Far from it. In fact, you should be honest in your CV. However, you must customize your CV to highlight those skills that are directly relevant to the job you are interested in. Which also means leaving out all those details that are not important for the job.

Do you have any other tips that you would like to share? Please use the comment section below.

Resume writing tips from Seek

  • Keep to the employer’s submission requirements – .doc, pdf, docx, rtf
  • Brief is best – more details about your current or recent jobs, less about the past
  • Clear, straightforward text – make sure everyone can understand it
  • Use one font – formatting matters and easy to read makes you stand out
  • Put contact information at the end – not the start or middle
    Highlight specific skills – relevant to the job you’re applying to
Immigration News Work Abroad

Moving to Australia? See how your living exp will be affected

Expenses in Australia can catch new migrants completely off guard. This guide provides useful tips to consider before moving to Australia.

AustraliaAsylumSidney

Many career professionals jump on the bandwagon of moving to Australia without putting pen to paper and consider living expenses in the new land.

Those considering moving to Australia should keep in mind the salary levels and their relation to monthly household expenses. This is even more crucial for those moving with young kids, as medical expenses can take away a big chunk of take home salary.

With taxes going up in Australia, the disposable income of many Australians is adversely impacted.

The main factors to consider before moving to Australia – average salary, household expenses, transportation expenses, education, and most importantly, medical expenses.

Average salaries in Australia (in AUD)

  • Operations manager $80,000
  • Accountant $55,000
  • Graphic designer $48,000
  • General manager $97,000
  • Office manager $55,000
  • Retail store manager $46,000

(source: Payscale.com)

Average house rent in Australia

The rental prices vary dramatically across Australia, as the following figures show. These figures are as of January 2012, and with changing economic scenario, it may work out cheaper to have a mortgage than to rent in 2014, in some parts of Australia like Canberra. (Source: Workin In Australia)

  • Darwin $550
  • Sydney $500
  • Canberra $500
  • Perth $400
  • Brisbane $380
  • Melbourne $360
  • Adelaide $340
  • Hobart $320

Average house prices in Australia

Again, these are June 2012 figures, but provide a good indication on house prices throughout the country. In some cities in Australia, you may find owning a home cheaper than renting one.

  • Sydney $555,000
  • Canberra $495,000
  • Melbourne $490,000
  • Darwin$472,000
  • Perth $460,000
  • Brisbane $415,000
  • Adelaide $370,000
  • Hobart $350,000

Medical expenses in Australia

This one expense is often under-estimated by new migrants. After all, who would imagine falling sick? However, cost of healthcare is very high in Australia, and if you are not a citizen, permanent resident, or hold a certain visa, you will not be eligible for Medicare, and will have to pay medical bills.

  • Visit to GP – $70 of which roughly half is paid by Medicare
  • Visit to a specialist – $155, of which Medicare will pay $69
  • Visit to dentist for one filling – $175 of which Health fund reimburses $98

Health fund is private insurance, independent of Medicare.

 

Immigration News Work Abroad

NZ slashes duty-free tobacco limit by 75%

New Zealand will reduce the duty-free allowance for cigarettes from the current 200 cigarettes to just 50.

In an attempt to make New Zealand smoke-free by 2025, the government will lower the duty-free allowance for international travellers visiting New Zealand, from the current 200 cigarettes to 50 cigarettes.

This brings New Zealand in line with similar regulations in Australia. The new duty-free tobacco limit is forecast to raise $50 million in extra revenue annually. These changes will help to eliminate cheaper avenues for smoking, which are out of step with recent government initiatives

The new limit of 50 cigarettes will apply from 1 November 2014. If the New Zealand Associate Minister of Health Tariana Turia had her way, she would have removed the duty-free allowance completely.

Smoking causes up to 5,000 premature deaths in New Zealand every year.

“It is an anomaly that on the one hand we’re increasing the price, and on the other hand we’re offering a duty-free allowance on 200 cigarettes to every adult arriving at our borders,” says Associate Minister of Health Tariana Turia.

The price differential between retail tobacco and duty-free tobacco will continue to grow with two further 10 per cent increases in the rate of excise scheduled over the next two years, says the minister.

“I considered recommending that the duty-free allowance be removed entirely, and although that would be consistent with the Government’s goal of making New Zealand effectively smoke-free from 2025, it would not be practical.

“Completely removing the duty-free concessions would mean that smokers, who might have a packet or two of cigarettes on them when going through Customs, had to either dump them or declare them and pay duty. If they did neither, they would risk prosecution and seizure of the goods.

“Either way, it would have potentially created considerable compliance costs for Customs in processing passengers at busy airports. Consequently, the Cabinet has agreed to reduce, rather than remove, the allowance.”

“It makes sense for us to match Australia’s duty-free limits for tobacco, given that nearly half of all our inbound passengers come from, or via, Australia.”

Along with the reduction in the duty-free concession, tobacco will be removed from the gift concession that currently allows gifts sent from overseas to be free of duty and GST in New Zealand, providing they exceed no more than $110 in total value.

Budget 2014 will include additional funding for New Zealand Customs Service of $2.7 million in 2014/15, and $420,000 in the following years to assist with implementation of the new rules.

New Zealand duty-free limits for tobacco

  • New limits effective from 1 November 2014
  • The duty-free tobacco allowance for passengers arriving in New Zealand will fall to 50 cigarettes, or 50 grams of cigars or tobacco products – similar to Australia. Currently passengers arriving in New Zealand can bring up to 200 cigarettes, 250 grams of tobacco, 50 cigars (or a mixture of all three weighing up to 250 grams) into New Zealand free of duty and GST.
  • Tobacco products sent to New Zealand as a gift from abroad will no longer be eligible for the $110 duty-free gift allowance. This means all gifts of tobacco products sent to New Zealand will now be subject to excise duty and GST.
  • What if you are carrying more than the allowance? As under the current rules, passengers carrying more than the new limit will need to declare this, and pay the relevant duty and tax on the excess amounts, or forfeit these excess amounts at the Customs controlled area. If passengers fail to declare dutiable goods, the goods will be confiscated and passengers may be prosecuted.
  • The changes to the traveller’s duty-free tobacco allowance will not affect outgoing international travel. Outgoing passengers will still be able to purchase duty-free tobacco from New Zealand duty-free stores in accordance with the overall limits specified by their destination country.

 

News Work Abroad

2 Indians charged in Canada for job fraud

Two Indians are among three people charged by the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) for the unauthorized employment of foreign nationals.

Following a three-month investigation, the CBSA’s Criminal Investigation Division charged Brampton-based 31-year old Kumar Gautam and 29-year old Nancy Gautam of unauthorized employment of foreign nationals.

It is alleged that the accused employed a number of foreign nationals who were not authorized to work in Canada.

The individuals and companies charged are: Kumar Gautam, Nancy Gautam, Shane Burrows, Logan Moving & Storage Inc., Shane’s Moving & Storage Inc. and EBS Transport.

“The CBSA is committed to supporting the employment of those authorized to work here in Canada and ensuring that employers abide by our laws.” says Goran Vragovic, Regional Director General of CBSA, Greater Toronto Area Region.

Business Money News Work Abroad

NZ job market strong

highly skilled jobs in Auckland

highly skilled jobs in Auckland

Good news for job hunters and those seeking a change of job. The number of job listings on the Trade Me Jobs site has increased by 21% year-on-year.

The website had 50,000 roles listed in the first quarter of 2014. The growth in jobs is in all major locations in New Zealand.

Auckland, Wellington and Canterbury are seeing positive growth, says Peter Osborne, head of Trade Me Jobs.

“With more roles being advertised, Kiwis hunting that dream job are looking well-placed to consider their next career move.

Trade Me analysis  is in line with similar report from Westpac McDermott Miller (PDF file) which found that employment confidence is at an all-time high since the recession.

“The New Zealand job market is looking very rosy.”

Highest salary jobs are in Auckland

The Auckland region remains the powerhouse of the national job market, said Mr Osborne. “The City of Sails saw a 20% boost in job listings when compared to the same period last year, with central Auckland and Manukau experiencing significant jumps in year-on-year growth.”

For the first time, average salary in Auckland is higher than Wellington. In fact, those working in central Auckland could expect the highest average pay of the country, taking home an average annual salary of $72,302. This was ahead of previous leader central Wellington ($70,234), and New Plymouth (61,143).

Canterbury job listings were up 24% on the same time last year, with Christchurch city’s available roles also ticking up 24%. “It’s been a long process, but the rebuilding efforts in the area are still the primary motivators for activity in the employment market,” says Peter.

Jobs in Auckland Jobs in New Zealand

IT guys highest paid in New Zealand

“The need for skilled IT workers is reflected in the sector’s dominance of average pay packets,” Mr Osborne said. “Four of the top five are filled by IT architects, IT sales, IT project managers and IT managers, all taking home an average pay packet between $128,000 and $134,000 a year.”

Sectors seeing increased listings this quarter when compared to the same period last year included IT sales (up 166%), journalism (up 156%) and retail department manager roles (up 131%).

Peter says there was plenty of opportunity for employers too with recent research commissioned by Trade Me Jobs finding that 45% of employees were willing to relocate for a new job. “Employers should be confident there are plenty of potential candidates willing to consider the right role even if they’re not on the doorstep.”

More than half of employees (62%) cited better pay as their primary motivation for considering moving to a new location, but other factors included being made redundant, career development and a desire to relocate. “With the surge in job listings, now is a good time for anyone contemplating that next great role to put their thinking into action.”

Peter says Wellington was recently revealed as the most desirable New Zealand destination to head to for a new job. “We saw 18% of respondents choose the capital, while the Bay of Plenty was next with 14% of the vote,” he said. “The job market in Wellington is in good shape for new arrivals, with a 26% tick up in advertised roles on a year ago.”

NZ jobs by sector

Surprise down south

“We saw a huge lift in advertised roles in Southland, with a 41% increase,” he said. “We saw good growth in agriculture, trades, and healthcare. Jobs out on the pasture aren’t in short supply either, with advertised roles for farming up 113%.”

The number of roles advertised in the Taranaki region also lifted significantly, up 16% on a year ago.

Mortgage forcing employees to look for greener pastures

“As mortgage rates rise, so too does the desire for a better pay check at the end of the week. With perceptions of job opportunities markedly improving, and recent signs that firms are looking to step up their hiring efforts, it’s becoming a job hunter’s market.

“High salaries in IT are great for people working in those sectors, but research has also shown they are among the least likely of professions to move roles. Combined with a real skills shortage, this can only mean that IT professionals will continue to dominate the high salaried roles in the foreseeable future and in contrast to many other sectors the industry will find it increasingly difficult to land good, experienced IT staff.”

News Work Abroad

Job vacancies on rise in New Zealand

The number of jobs advertised online in New Zealand grew by 1.9 per cent in March 2014, following a 1.3 per cent decrease in February, according to the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment’s latest Jobs Online report.

What’s more – over the past year, vacancies advertised increased by 18.4 per cent, while skilled vacancies increased by 16.5 per cent.

The monthly growth is largely driven by a bounce back of skilled vacancies in the healthcare and medical industry. These increased by 4.3 per cent in March, following a fall in February.

Skilled vacancies also increased in the sales, retail, marketing and advertising (up 2.0 per cent) and information technology (up 0.9 per cent) industries. The growth for the period is offset by decreases in other industries, with hospitality and tourism experiencing the largest fall of 2.6 per cent.

JobVacanciesNewZealand

Skilled Vacancies Index (May 2007=100)

Annual figures however show a different picture for some of these sectors. The biggest yearly growth in skilled vacancies was in hospitality and tourism (up 36.7 per cent) and sales, retail, marketing and advertising (up 21.7 per cent) industries. The healthcare and medical industry (down 4.5 per cent) had the only decrease over the year to March.

Regionally, Canterbury (up 3.6 per cent) leads the growth in March, followed by Auckland (up 1.0 per cent). North Island (excluding Auckland and Wellington) experienced the biggest fall of 4.9 per cent.

Ministry Labour Market and Business Performance Manager David Paterson says the figures are consistent with the overall performance of the national economy and the labour market.

“Despite the monthly fluctuations, we can see a healthy trend in vacancies over the past year, across all regions and most industries,” he says.

The upward trend in vacancies over the past year is consistent with the results from the latest Quarterly Survey of Business Opinion. A net 29 per cent of firms found it difficult to find skilled labour, representing a 4.1 percentage point increase over the last year.

Immigration News Work Abroad

NZ moves to ‘online’ only submission for Working Holiday

Work Visa New Zealand

 

From 18 April 2014, New Zealand Immigration has stopped accepting physical submission for Working Holiday Schemes.

“A change to immigration regulations means that all working holiday scheme (WHSs) applications must be submitted using the online application system,” says a statement issued by the immigration authority.

“Any manual applications received will be returned to the applicant.”

If you are considering applying under a WHS, you should apply using the online system for Working Holiday Scheme for New Zealand.

However, for the United Kingdom working holidaymakers who are in New Zealand on a 12-month visa, and want to lodge an application for the balance of the 23 months will be allowed to submit manual application. This second application must be lodged manually.

Immigration News Work Abroad

NZ removes travel sanctions against Fiji

In response to positive momentum in Fiji towards elections by September 2014, the New Zealand Government has lifted the remaining travel sanctions against Fiji.

What does this mean?

The travel sanctions which applied to named individuals and classes of people (for instance, immediate family of members of the Republic of Fiji Military Forces) have been lifted.

“The progress that Fiji is making towards holding free and fair deserves recognition from the Pacific region and international community,” says New Zealand’s foreign affairs minister Murray McCully.

Applicants no longer have to complete the supplementary form for Fiji nationals.

What else will happen?

The suspension of Fiji from the Pacific Access Category has been lifted. However, Fiji nationals will not be able to take part until 2015, as the 2014 scheme has already opened.

 

Immigration News Work Abroad

Canada raises caps for migrants

Work in Canada
Work in Canada

Family enjoying a campfire outside their oTENTik
© Parks Canada / J. Gordon 2013

 

For the period between May and December 2014, Canada has increased caps of visa applications under skilled workers, trade workers, experienced workers programs.

The total cap will be 38000 – which includes 25000 for skilled workers, 5000 for trade, and 8000 for experienced workers. The list of eligible occupations under the skilled workers program has been doubled, from 24 to 50 occupations, reflecting the latest labour market needs.

While visa applications caps are usually for one year – 1 May to 30 April, these caps are only for eight months – 1 May to 31 December, in effect increasing the number of total visa applications processed.

The caps have been put in place to ensure that the Canadian immigration authority is not left with any backlog of visa applications on 1 January 2015, the day it launches the new Express Entry program.

The Express Entry progam, Canada’s new active recruitment model, will lead to a “faster and more flexible economic immigration system” that will address Canada’s economic and labour market needs, says a statement issued by Citizenship and Immigration Canada.

“With these measures in place for our key economic programs, our government is ensuring our immigration system is addressing Canada’s economic and labour market needs while reducing backlogs and improving processing times,” Canada’s Citizenship and Immigration Minister Chris Alexander says.

“We look forward to the launch of Express Entry next January, which will be a major step forward in attracting the skilled workers we need and have them working in Canada faster.”

Quick facts

  • Citizenship and Immigration Canada will begin accepting applications under new caps for the Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP), Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP) and Canadian Experience Class (CEC), starting 1 May 2014. These measures will ensure a steady supply of skilled workers who are settling in Canada permanently and helping to supplement the Canadian workforce in areas where there are skills shortages.
  • These are the last applications that will be accepted under the current system before Express Entry launches in January 2015.
  • The latest FSWP occupation list was developed based on recent labour market data from Employment and Social Development Canada and input from the provinces and territories on regional labour market needs.
  • Canada’s Economic Action Plan 2014 will invest $14 million over two years and $4.7 million per year ongoing to ensure the successful implementation of Express Entry.
  • Determine online your eligibility to apply for Canadian work visa.
  • The full set of Ministerial Instructions will be available in the Canada Gazette on April 26, 2014.

http://youtu.be/FGAsyrYtQQ0

 

Immigration News Work Abroad

Resident non-immigrants in US: 1 in 4 is from India

Jobs in US

A snapshot of resident non-immigrant population in the US released by the Department of Homeland Security in February this year shows that Indians, more than Mexicans or Chinese or any other nationality, constituted the largest resident non-immigrants in the US – a category that excludes tourists, business travelers, and permanent residents, but includes temporary guest workers (such as those on H1B visas) and students.

The report reveals that the resident non-immigrant population in the US averaged 1.9 million during July 1, 2011–June 30, 2012.

Temporary workers and their families accounted for approximately 45% (840,000) of the population, and students and their families accounted for another 40% (720,000). Of the temporary worker and family category, a whopping 38% (430,000) were from India, compared to only 210,000 from China, and 140,000 from South Korea, the next highest worker-flow countries.

Mexico, which accounts for a large number of illegal migratory workers coming into US, had only 100,000 resident non-immigrants.

Read full story here

Immigration News Work Abroad

Canada allows ‘express entry’ for economic migrants

Canada visa

Now, skilled professionals keen to migrate to Canada can jump the queue for becoming permanent residents, if they have a valid job offer. They can even have their residency application processed in less than six months.

Canada visa, express entry

Under the new ‘Express Entry’ scheme to become effective January 2015, the Canada Immigration department will who receive a valid job offer or nomination under the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) will “quickly” invite people with job offer to apply for permanent residency.

“Express Entry” is not to be confused with the Temporary Foreign Worker Program, which is only used to fill temporary skill shortages.

Candidates with a job offer or nomination under the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) are eligible under the “Express Entry” category which is designed to deal with regional labour shortages, and help fill open jobs for which there are no available Canadian workers.

Described as the “game changer” by the country’s immigration minister, “Express Entry” replaces the now-scrapped Formerly referred to as “Expression of Interest” category, and will be open to skilled immigrants.

It will allow the Canadian government to “select the best candidates who are most likely to succeed in Canada, rather than those who happen to be first in line,” says a statement issued by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC – the immigration department of Canada).

“It will also prevent backlogs and allow CIC to better coordinate application volume with the annual immigration levels plan.”

Visa applicants can expect faster processing times of six months or less when invited to come to Canada in four key economic streams: the Federal Skilled Worker Program, Federal Skilled Trades Program, Canadian Experience Class, and a portion of the PNP.

More importantly, employers will have a key role in selecting economic immigrants and providing advice to the Government of Canada. Canada’s Citizenship and Immigration Minister Chris Alexander says that over the course of spring 2014, CIC will work with provincial and territorial governments to hold a series of cross-Canada information sessions to provide employers with more information about this exciting new system.

Express Entry promises to be a game-changer for Canadian immigration and Canada’s economy, says Chris.

“It will revolutionize the way we attract skilled immigrants, and get them working here faster. Our government is actively engaged with our provincial and territorial partners, and with employers, to make January’s launch of Express Entry a success.”

 

Quick facts

  • Canada’s Economic Action Plan 2014 will invest $14 million over two years and $4.7 million per year ongoing to ensuring the successful implementation of Express Entry.
  • With Express Entry, Canada will be able to select the best candidates who are most likely to achieve success in Canada, rather than the first person in line.
  • The Government of Canada’s new and improved Job Bank will help facilitate matches between Canadian employers and Express Entry candidates.
  • Having a valid job offer or provincial/territorial nomination will guarantee Express Entry candidates an invitation to apply for permanent residence.

More information

Backgrounder — Expression of Interest (EOI): Preparing for Success in 2015

Economic Action Plan 2014

Immigration News Study Abroad Work Abroad

Spouses of H1B holders can work

Spouses of H1B visa holders will soon be allowed to work in the United States, as the country gets ready to boost entrepreneurship in an effort to drive the US economy out of a seven-year-long recession.

jobs in US

The White House, in a statement, says the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), will soon release new US immigration policy aimed at making “the United States more attractive to talented foreign entrepreneurs and other high-skill immigrants who will contribute substantially to the U.S. economy, create jobs, and enhance American innovative competitiveness. ”

As part of the immigration reforms that began last year with a draft bill, the US will authorize employment for “spouses of certain high-skill workers on H-1B visas, as well as enhancing opportunities for outstanding professors and researchers.

The DHS is also launching Entrepreneur Pathways, an online resource center that gives immigrant entrepreneurs a way to navigate opportunities to start and grow a business in the United States.

Currently, the US issues 65,00 H1B visas, many of which are issued to Indian techies. This number is soon likely to triple to 180,000.

Many Indians are likely to benefit from the immigration rules for working and living in the United States.

Indian outsourcing companies have been lobbying to increase the 65,000 limit on U.S. companies to sponsor foreigners with at least a bachelor’s degree for a H-1B visa.

When the limit is reached, the American Citizenship and  Immigration Services randomly selects visa applicants.

As many as 30% of these H1B visas are issued to Indian companies based in the United States. Hiring a local subcontractor from the US is reportedly twice as expensive as sending a techie from India.

Before anyone gets excited, read the statement again. The H1B waiver to work for spouses may not apply to all categories. It may be limited to spouses from the science, technology and research sectors.

What is an H-1B visa?

Under the Immigration and Nationality Act, US employers  temporarily hire foreign workers in specialty occupations. These technical staff are allowed to work in the United states under the H-1B non-immigrant visa in the United States.

When an H-1B visa holder quits the job, they can get their visa status changed to another another non-immigrant status, or find another employer. If either of these options are not available, the H-1B visa holder has to leave the country.

Which family members are allowed under H1B visa?

Spouse and dependent children under 21 years of age are issued H-4 visa. Under an H-4 visa, spouse and children can study in the US, but they are not permitted to work. Also, they are not allocated a social security number. However, H-4 visa holders are allowed to open bank account and obtain a driver’s license.

Alternatively, family members may apply for a non-immigrant visa – for example, the spouse may apply for an H1B visa, and children may apply for F-1 which is students’ visa.

(Photo credit: US Army)

 

Immigration Work Abroad

Chinese migration agent’s OZ licence culled

Australia’s immigration authority has cancelled the licence of a Chinese immigration agent, following “a number of complaints about applications for protection visas”.

The Sydney-based migration agent failed in her bid to have a decision to cancel her registration overturned, with the Administrative Review Tribunal (AAT) confirming the decision by the Office of the Migration Agents Registration Authority (OMARA).

The Authority found that Weiming Qian had failed to competently and diligently assist her clients and act on their instructions, manufactured or encouraged the manufacture of claims for protection visas, failed to attend with her clients at the Refugee Review Tribunal and the former Federal Magistrates Court for appointed hearings and prepared applications for judicial review when not qualified.

A migration agent has a duty to act in the lawful interests of a client and this agent’s conduct was clearly not in her clients’ interests, a spokesman for the Department of Immigration and Border Protection said.

“She deliberately undermined the protection visa programme at every stage, the lodgement of applications for visa processing and review proceedings before the Refugee Review Tribunal and the courts.”

The AAT found the scale of the complaints indicated entrenched poor practice and found the decision made by the OMARA to cancel Ms Qian’s registration as a migration agent was correct, as was the decision that she could not be re-registered for five years.

“Only people who are registered with the OMARA are permitted to give immigration assistance,” the spokesman said.

“Registered agents must meet a code of conduct and be a fit and proper person to provide immigration assistance.”

There are more than 5000 registered migration agents in Australia and overseas who can provide immigration assistance. People wishing to find out whether an individual is registered as a migration agent can go to the Authority’s website, www.mara.gov.au.