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Are you dreaming of getting a job in Australia as a Filipino? According to new data by the Australian Bureau of Statistics there are over 310,000 Filipinos calling Australia their second home. If you live in the Philippines and want to work in Australia there are a few different ways to get started. We list some of the avenues that can help to jumpstart your journey to finding a job in the land “Down Under”.

  1. Directly apply for a job with an Australian employer

    Contrary to popular belief,  you can directly apply for a job with an Australian employer. Going through a placement agency may increase your probability of finding a job and may provide some ease, but is not a requirement. While this route is technically possible, it may not always be the easiest. 

    Websites such as Seek and Indeed are the two most common employment marketplaces that Australians use when looking for work. You can also filter your searches depending on the employment type and location. Do note that it is not uncommon for job postings to indicate the work rights requirements. You should always read the job posting to avoid wasting time. 

    Your employer might choose to sponsor you under the Employer-Sponsored Visa (Visa 482). Learn more about the 482 Employer- Sponsored Visa and find out if it would be a good option for you. The Australian government also provides more information about the visa.

    You may also enter the Australian job market with the Skilled Independent Visa (189), which is a point-based visa. 

    Prior to leaving your home, you must meet all requirements mandated by the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA). These requirements usually involve a valid passport, a work visa, employment contract, and so on.

    Australian permanent residency and the 482 visa

    It is important to understand that not all sponsorship under the 482 visa will be eligible for permanent residency. For example, being employed through an on-hire labour agreement will not lead to permanent residency.

    If you would like to be eligible to become a permanent resident from a 482 visa, then you must be a direct employee of the company you provide services to and be hired through an on-hire labour agreement. A strategy that you can take on would be to first get hired through the on-hire agency, work hard, and encourage your employer to hire you directly.

  2. Reach out to placement agencies

    POEA accredited agencies in the Philippines

    The Philippine Overseas Employment Administration (POEA) is the official government arm that regulates the activities of Philippine placement agencies with job requirements abroad. In other words, they make sure that job listings are legitimate and legal.

    You can find the complete list of POEA-accredited agencies here: https://www.poea.gov.ph/cgi-bin/aglist.asp

    You can find a list of job vacancies and their POEA licenses here: https://www.workabroad.ph/search-jobs/c/1/b/landbased


    Browse jobs based in Australia and look for potential employers. By networking with employers on LinkedIn you may come across new opportunities and you can message them to ask for any job vacancies they may have, even if its not on their companies profile currently. Paying for a premium membership may also be an advantage, as you can send InMail messages to recruiters and get advanced search results.

    If you are currently working at a multinational company, check if there is an office in Australia, and enquire if transferring is an option.

  3. Reach out to recruitment agencies in Australia

    Reaching out to several agencies or even headhunters based in Australia may be beneficial, as you are not tied to stay with one. Headhunting firms such as Michael Page and Hays are reputable, and can help match you with prospective employers.

    Australian Staffing Agency (ASA) may also assist in finding  jobs in construction, logistics and warehousing.

  4. Apply through POEA itself

    Apart from accrediting and monitoring the activities of agencies, POEA also partners with reputable employers internationally. Applying for a job through POEA will give you added peace of mind that the employer is indeed legitimate and meets all regulations. You also do not have to pay placement fees.

    Visit the POEA page regularly as job vacancies can vary in industry and location.

    You can register and apply online or apply in person.

    If you would like to apply in person, bring the following documents:

    • A detailed resume with a 2x2 photo
    • College diploma
    • Transcript of records
    • Valid PRC ID (if applicable)
    • Employment certificates
    • Valid TESDA certificate (if applicable)
    • Copy of valid passport
    • Valid NBI clearance (for travel abroad)
    • Other documents that may be required

    POEA address in the Philippines:

    Manpower Registry Division, Ground Floor, Windows S & T, EDSA corner Ortigas Avenue Mandaluyong City.

  5. Enter Australia on a student visa

    Entering Australia as a student is a common route for many Pinoys, primarily because it is a “foot-in-the-door-strategy” that opens a lot of opportunities. Being on a Student visa 500 may cost a lot initially but see this as a long term investment if you are interested in staying in Australia. If you do not currently meet the job and skill requirements for employer-sponsored visas then studying a course that will lead you to becoming a permanent resident may be your best bet. Being on a student visa allows you to work for 40 hours per fortnight and opens doors for you to network and apply for full-time jobs after you graduate.

    If your degree is at least two years, you may also be eligible for a Post-Graduate Work Visa (485) after you finish your degree, which gives you full working rights for at least two years.

    For a full breakdown of your options to become a permanent resident in Australia through your studies, you can read our blog post on Australian citizenship tips for students.

Coming soon: Enter Australia through an agricultural visa

The acting Prime Minister, Michael McCormack, has announced that a new agricultural visa will be written in the next few months with the aim of filling the labour shortages in the agricultural sector. The visa is set to be available by September 2021, and will be open to Southeast Asian nationals, such as Filipinos.

This visa is considered a temporary work visa, and lets holders stay for up to three years.

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