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Displaced Talent Mobility Pilot Scheme

The Displaced Talent Mobility Scheme is a new programme announced by the government which is aimed at enabling highly skilled displaced individuals to come to the UK to work.

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What is the Displaced Talent Mobility Scheme?

Over the next two years, it has been announced that up to 100 individuals from Jordan and the Lebanon will be assisted in finding sponsorship from a UK employer.

The purpose of the scheme is to allow highly skilled displaced individuals find an opportunity to work in the UK in roles that are in short supply in the UK.

It will allow eligible individuals fleeing conflict and violence access work opportunities that would otherwise extremely difficult to obtain.

Requirements including having English language skills and the ability to find a role in the UK.

The government are running this scheme in partnership with the global nonprofit organisation Talent Beyond Boundaries which has run similar skilled migration schemes in Australia and Canada.

Although its primary applicants will be skilled refugees and displaced people from Jordan and Lebanon, it is not a form of refugee status.

It is similar to the Skilled Worker Visa within the context of the UK’s asylum system. The Skilled Worker visa follows a similar global points-based system.

It is expected that the structure of the displaced talent visa will be as follows:

  • Applicants will be required to hold a job offer from an eligible sponsor (an employer with a valid Sponsor Licence)
  • Applicants must meet the minimum salary requirements for the role
  • Individuals will be required to have a minimum level of English language skills
  • The visa is expected to be issued for up to five years and can be used as a route towards settling in the UK
  • It is expected that individuals can change their role and change employers after working in the UK
  • Applicants are likely to be able to bring eligible family members to join them
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Who can apply for the scheme?

The individuals who are eligible for the displaced talent visa include the following:

  • Refugees
  • Stateless individuals
  • Displaced individuals
  • Individuals who have been forced to flee from their homes

It may be possible for individuals to apply for the scheme for any skilled worker role listed on the Gov.uk website, however, it is likely that priority will be given to individuals who meet the criteria of those on the occupation shortage list.

The displaced job seeker can apply for the scheme by registering with Talent Beyond Boundaries (TBB)’s Talent Catalog.

If they are eligible, they will undergo screening and their job offer from a UK employer will be confirmed.

Because of the nature of being displaced, it is not essential that candidates have their official documents proving skills, experience, or qualifications.

It is recommended that applicants upload a copy of their CV if they have one available.

How can employers hire on the Displaced Talent Scheme?

Through the charity TBB, employers can view a shortlisted selection of candidates that may be suitable for interview.

The employer may then choose to include an individual as part of their normal recruitment process.

Employers may conduct interviews, skills tests, trial periods, etc, in order to identify whether the candidate would be a suitable employee for their business.

TBB can facilitate interviews and online video calls through their network of offices on the ground in Jordan and Lebanon.

The advantage for employers is that they can more easily recruit from a pool of international skilled workers with the appropriate skills, experience, and qualifications to undertake the role, especially if a role is on the shortage occupation list.

TBB also assists in the skills validation process to support UK businesses with this hiring decision.

Conditions of the scheme

The scheme allows eligible individuals to come to the UK for the purposes of undertaking a skilled role.

The applicant must meet requirements similar to the Skilled Worker route requirements, including minimum salary, skill level, and English language skills.

Employers must be registered with the UK Home Office and hold a valid Sponsor Licence to be able to hire on this scheme.

For successful displaced talent visa applicants, there are a number of benefits of this scheme. They will be eligible for free priority processing (undertaken within five days).

If selected as a candidate, they may be required to relocate to the UK within two weeks.

In addition, support will be provided by TBB to assist with their visa application and other administrative support as part of the document gathering process.

This includes support in obtaining passports, references from former employers, records of tax, transcripts from universities, employment references, proof of experience or qualifications, etc.

Eligible candidates will be supported in the event that they lose their job or wish to change job.

If successful, candidates will receive a Skilled Worker Visa to last for five years, and may then be eligible to apply for indefinite leave to remain (ILR).

If an individual holds ILR for 12 months, they may then be able to apply for British citizenship.

Talent Beyond Boundaries (TBB)

The nonprofit organisation Talent Beyond Boundaries was established to unlock migration pathways for skilled refugees and displaced individuals.

Recognising that individuals should be prioritised for relocation based on need and vulnerability, the group have been successful in working with the Canadian and Australian governments to ensure valuable skills and expertise is not wasted.

Their goal is to connect this talent pool of individuals with employers to maximise opportunities for individuals and employers.

According to TBB’s website, there are more than 25,000 skilled workers registered on their online Talent Catalogue.

The group supports the work of the Refugee Council and the UNHCR and they have already assisted tens of thousands of individuals find self-sustaining work.

How to apply

To apply for the displaced talent visa pilot programme, individuals based in Jordan and Lebanon should register their interest with their nearest TBB office or online.

Upon visiting the online registration site, individuals will be asked to indicate whether they are a refugee, stateless person or otherwise displaced and unable to return home due to danger.

If this does not apply, applicants must tick a box stating that they understand their application may not be considered for this reason.

Other questions include:

  • Personal details (name, age, gender, date of birth)
  • Country of current residence
  • Year that the individual arrived in that country
  • Nationality
  • Whether they are registered with the UNHCR or UNRWA (however, it is not essential to be registered in order to apply for this scheme)

Applicants will be asked to choose from a list of 147 fields in which they are skilled, as well as the number of years of experience in this occupation.

Questions in this section also include:

  • Company name
  • Country
  • Start date of the role
  • Finish date (if relevant)
  • Job title
  • Job description
  • Type of contract
  • Type of employment (paid or unpaid)

There will also be a question on the highest level of education that the applicant has achieved. Individuals can choose from the following options:

  • No formal education
  • Primary school
  • Some secondary school
  • Secondary school degree or equivalent
  • Some vocational training
  • Vocational degree
  • Associate degree
  • Some university
  • Bachelor’s degree
  • Master’s degree
  • Doctoral degree

If the degree option is selected, the following information must be provided:

  • The specialisation of your degree (from a list of 58 options)
  • Name of your course
  • Location
  • Name of the institution where you studied
  • Length of course
  • Year of graduation
  • Whether the degree was completed or incomplete

Next, the applicant will be asked about the languages they speak. Questions include:

  • How well do you speak English?
  • How well do you read and write in English?

Possible options to these questions include:

  • Elementary proficiency
  • Intermediate proficiency
  • Full professional proficiency
  • Native or bilingual proficiency

Applicants will also be asked whether they have additional professional certifications. Questions include:

  • Certificate name
  • Institution name
  • Date of receipt

Before the final step, the questionnaire will ask the candidate whether there is any other relevant additional information that they would like to submit.

There is also an opportunity to submit a link to the candidate’s LinkedIn profile (where relevant).

The application can be viewed in English or Arabic. Applicants are welcome to answer questions in their own language and TBB will arrange for translators to assist with translating.

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Profile of individuals registered with TBB

The profile of people who have registered with TBB is outlined below.

Demographics

  • 84% of registered applicants are male
  • 16% are female
  • The top five registered nationalities are Syrian, Palestinian, Iraqi, Yemeni and Sudanese
  • The median age of applicants is 29 years old

Language skills

  • Over 15 languages reported as spoken by applicants
  • The most common languages are Arabic, English, French, Turkish, and German
  • For English speakers, the following was reported:
    • 22% beginner proficiency
    • 50% intermediate proficiency
    • 25% full professional proficiency
    • 3% native or bilingual proficiency

Top occupations

  • Trade workers (including industrial, electrical, construction, maintenance, and manufacturing workers): 4,310
  • Engineers (including civil, mechanical, electrical, and petroleum): 1,894
  • Healthcare workers (including nurses, doctors, physiotherapists, dentists, and pharmacists): 1,502
  • Teachers (including primary, secondary, and special education): 1,398

Education level

  • The reported education levels included the following information:
    • 72% have completed secondary school or higher
    • 64% completed a bachelor’s degree
    • 17% completed an associate’s degree
    • 11% completed a master’s degree
    • 6% completed a vocational degree
    • 2% completed a doctoral degree

How we can help

As a firm of highly experienced immigration lawyers, we are available to assist you with all aspects of the immigration process.

If you choose to work with us as your legal advisers, we can offer comprehensive support and guidance on safe and legal ways to work in the UK and existing safe routes to enter the country. We have assisted many clients fleeing war.

If you are an employer, we can also assist you throughout the process in order to hire and sponsor displaced talent.

We believe strongly that our clients deserve the most accurate legal representation, no matter their circumstances or their goals.

Our services start by listening carefully to your situation and understanding your needs. We will advise you on the most appropriate course of action to help you achieve your goals.

Our friendly and professional immigration advisers are highly qualified in all areas of immigration law and you can be confident that you will receive the highest quality service.

Some of the services we offer you include:

  • Assessing your eligibility for your chosen immigration route
  • Advising on the potential likelihood of a successful application
  • Support with gathering the required documents to supplement your supplication
  • Assisting with the completion of your application
  • Guiding you throughout the priority processing stage
  • Providing legal aid for individuals who are asylum seekers, refugees, or displaced

We can assist with a wide range of asylum options, including private asylum, family reunion applications, asylum appeals, and fresh claims for asylum.

There may be a number of resettlement routes available to you, and we can discuss this with you during a consultation.

Contact our friendly client care team for a discussion about how we can assist you. We look forward to working with you.

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Frequently Asked Questions

The scheme is a programme that connects highly skilled people who are displaced, refugees, or stateless with employers in host countries.

It is similar to the existing Skilled Worker route as applicants must meet certain salary, experience, and language requirements in order to be eligible.

It removes many of the administrative and legal barriers that displaced people encounter when seeking work in a new country.

The pilot scheme is being tested in the UK. Applicants from Jordan and Lebanon may register with the facilitating organisation, TBB.

Up to 100 people will be eligible to come to the UK on this scheme over the next two years as part of the pilot scheme.

The route leads to indefinite leave to remain (permanent residence) in the UK.

In order to register for the scheme, it is not essential to apply with original documents. It is recognised that it can be difficult for displaced persons to still have access to some of their documents including transcripts, job contracts, proof of qualifications, etc.

The group TBB can assist with gathering the required documents.

A minimum level of English language skills is required for a successful application, however, this is not essential when registering. It is possible to register with TBB and improve your English language skills while you wait.