Independent skilled immigrants are becoming more and more popular in several countries including the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand. Essentially, skilled independent immigration allows people with extensive experience and/or education to immigrate to another country with work rights without first looking for an employer to guarantee a work permit. This solves the problems faced by people who are unable to apply for good jobs because their employers are unwilling to sponsor their work permits.
The purpose of allowing people who have been granted the right to work in the country is to encourage people with the skills required by the country to enter the country. These visas are often more flexible for individuals because they do not associate the individual with a company.
HSMP (Highly Skilled Migration Program) is a points-based system. Applicants earn points based on previous education, experience, and income, and must earn at least 65 points to qualify. Applicants under the age of 28 will receive points for this and will find it easier to standardize in other areas because the standard for rewarding points is lower. MBA students from some universities around the world also get HSMP only based on their education. The HSMP visa has an initial period of one year, and an additional three-year extension can be applied for at the end of the first year. Facts have proved that the program has been very popular since its launch.
The Federal Skilled Worker Visa is again a points-based system, but it is much more complicated than the UK version, providing additional points in a wider range of areas. These may include points for having family members in Canada, getting a job offer, French and English language skills, etc. The visa currently takes a long time to be approved, but many people think that the opportunity in Canada is worth the wait.
Skilled workers wishing to immigrate to Australia face two main choices: fully skilled worker visas and qualified independent regional visas. As the name suggests, regional visas allow you to work in specific areas of Australia and are designed to encourage the development of these areas. A fully skilled worker visa allows you to work anywhere in Australia, but requires you to earn higher points. Again, these visas are more complicated than the British version.
New Zealand is working hard to encourage skilled migrants to move there and lower the passing score from 195 in 2004 to the current 100. Like Canada, points can be added to having close relatives in New Zealand, as can work experience gained in New Zealand.
For people with good education and/or experience, these countries have a strong initiative to try to encourage them to bring their skills and experience into the economy, which represents an increasing number of options for people to experience different cultures and opportunities.