From 23 November 2013 onwards companies intending to sponsor 457 workers will have to:
- undertake labour market testing in relation to a nominated occupation unless:
- there has been a major disaster, or
- the skill level of the nominated occupation is equivalent to Skill level 1 or Skill Level 2 as provided for in the Australian and New Zealand Standard Classification of Occupations (ANZSCO) (except for protected qualifications or protected experience);
- demonstrate that a suitably qualified Australian citizen, permanent resident or eligible temporary visa holder is not readily available to fill the position by including information about the approved sponsor’s attempts to recruit suitably qualified and experienced Australians, such as:
- evidence of advertising and fees, or payment of fees.
- copies of, or references to, any research released in the previous 4 months relating to labour market trends generally and in relation to the nominated occupation.
- expressions of support from Commonwealth, State and Territory government authorities with responsibility for employment matters.
- any other type of evidence determined by the Minister by legislative instrument.
- if the approved sponsor elects to provide evidence and information other than evidence of advertising and fees, or payment of fees, to support their claim to have tested the labour market, the Minister may take that evidence and information into account (but may gave it less weight).
- if an Australian citizen or permanent resident has been made redundant or retrenched in the nominated position within 4 months, then:
- explain why the person(s) has been made redundant.
- undertake labour market testing after those redundancies and retrenchments.
Zeke Bentley, Principal Migration Lawyer at The Migration Place, has criticized the changes saying: “The changes are under heavy criticism as they compel employers to undertake market testing, which in turn delays the visa application, and increases the cost of the process. This market testing regime was in place years ago, and was removed for good reason. Why does the department insist on changing the rules every few years? The 457 system works. Leave it alone and let it do its job: to help Australian businesses find skilled workers to fill skills shortages here in Australia.”