In some cases, deciding on the best skilled occupation to nominate for the purposes of General Skilled Migration can be very straightforward. However, in other cases this exercise can be extremely confusing and difficult to finalise.

An applicant with educational qualifications, skills and experience as a Mechanical Engineer would naturally select ‘Mechanical Engineer’ as their skilled occupation. However, another applicant who has Commerce educational qualifications, but skills and experience in Human Resource as well as Recruitment may find it tricky to nominate their skilled occupation as either a ‘Human Resource Adviser’ or a ‘Recruitment Consultant’.

In many cases, an applicant will have a background that can potentially overlap two or even more different areas, making the process relating to deciding a skilled occupation difficult and confusing.

Here are a few factors to consider when deciding which skilled occupation one should nominate for the Skills Assessment process:
  • There would be an educational requirement of the relevant skills assessing authority for the nominated occupation which must be met. For overseas qualifications, the educational qualification is compared by the skills assessing authority to qualifications under the AQF (Australian Qualifications) framework. It is not necessary that a bachelor degree awarded by an overseas institution be equivalent to an Australian bachelor degree.
  • Do you meet all the criteria specified by the relevant skills assessing authority for the occupation, including the work experience requirements that must be satisfied? You may have educational qualifications, skills and experience in a particular field, but if you changed your career path in the last few years it is possible that you may not be eligible to obtain a positive skills assessment, since you do not have recent relevant work experience.
  • One needs to see if most of the tasks specified by the relevant skills assessing authority at the required skill level for the occupation have been performed, or if some of the experience was at a lesser skilled level or in an irrelevant field. It is extremely important to obtain duties letters from the past and present employers emphasizing that during your stay in that company, the duties performed by you are a close fit as required for that particular occupation. This could be the one single factor that could most influence the outcome of the skills assessment.
  • It is possible that one could meet the eligibility requirements for skills assessment for more than one skilled occupation. In that case, a comparison should be done as to the advantages in selecting one occupation over another, for example:
  1. available quota as against number of applicants for nomination by a State or Territory government for each short-listed occupation
  2. a higher English language threshold set by a State or Territory government for one particular occupation as against the other
  3. a higher points cut-off score for one occupation as compared to the other
  4. If the applicant has previously studied and/or worked in Australia in a particular field, this could have a positive impact in the decision of selecting one occupation over another.

There are thus many factors to be taken into consideration, and one must oversee the entire process before deciding on the final occupation.