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Shortage Occupation List

The Shortage Occupation List is a collective list of jobs deemed in short supply within the United Kingdom. Migrant workers can apply for a Skilled Worker visa to work in the UK under one of these occupations.

For more information on the Shortage Occupation List, or on how to apply for a Skilled Worker visa, call us today on 0121 667 6530.

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    What is the Shortage Occupation list?

    The UK shortage occupation list is a detailed list of job roles deemed to be in short supply within England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. The roles are open to overseas workers providing they have the correct UK visas; typically, these roles can be filled by non-British workers with a Skilled Worker visa.

    Under the government’s new points-based immigration system, those applying under the Skilled Worker visa category must score a minimum of 70 points, with mandatory points scored for language, minimum salary, and skills.

    One of the main benefits of applying for jobs on the shortage occupation list is a decreased minimum salary threshold required to be eligible for a Skilled Worker visa. Generally speaking, jobs on the list may be paid only 80% of the job’s usual going rate.

    If your job is on the shortage list for healthcare and education, your salary must instead be at least the national pay scale rate for the job you’ll be doing in order to qualify for a Health and Care Worker visa or Skilled Worker visa.

    Applicants whose jobs are on the shortage occupation list can also benefit from reduced visa fees.

    The shortage occupation list is one of the many aspects related to the Skilled Worker visa. For assistance with your work visa application, including advice on how you can immigrate to the UK and work in your chosen field, reach out to one of our advisers today. Call us on 0121 667 6530 or reach out to us online.

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    Job Roles on the Shortage Occupation List

    As of March 2023, these are the jobs the Home Office deems in short supply in the UK:

    General

    Occupation code Job role Areas of the UK where there is a shortage Annual salary (80% of going rate)
    1181 Health services and public health managers and directors – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £30,720 (£15.15 per hour)
    1241 Residential, day and domiciliary care managers and proprietors – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £21,360 (£10.53 per hour)
    2111 Chemical scientists – only jobs in the nuclear industry Scotland only 80% of going rate: £21,360 (£10.53 per hour)
    2112 Biological scientists and biochemists – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £23,760 (£11.72 per hour)
    2113 Physical scientists – only the following jobs in the construction-related ground engineering industry: engineering geologist, hydrogeologist, geophysicist England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £29,200 (£14.40 per hour)
    2113 Physical scientists – only the following jobs in the oil and gas industry: geophysicist, geoscientist, geologist, geochemist, technical services manager in the decommissioning and waste areas of the nuclear industry, senior resource geologist and staff geologist in the mining sector England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £29,200 (£14.40 per hour)
    2114 Social and humanities scientists – only archaeologists England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £20,720 (£10.22 per hour)
    2121 Civil engineers – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £28,000 (£13.81 per hour)
    2122 Mechanical engineers – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £26,720 (£13.18 per hour)
    2123 Electrical engineers – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £29,600 (£14.60 per hour)
    2124 Electronics engineers – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £27,760 (£13.69 per hour)
    2126 Design and development engineers – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £27,280 (£13.45 per hour)
    2127 Production and process engineers – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £26,480 (£13.06 per hour)
    2129 Engineering professionals not elsewhere classified – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £26,160 (£12.90 per hour)
    2135 IT business analysts, architects and systems designers – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £29,280 (£14.44 per hour)
    2136 Programmers and software development professionals – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £26,640 (£13.14 per hour)
    2137 Web design and development professionals – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £20,800 (£10.26 per hour)
    2139 Information technology and communications professionals not elsewhere classified – only cyber security specialists England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £25,440 (£12.54 per hour)
    2216 Veterinarians – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £26,000 (£12.82 per hour)
    2425 Actuaries, economists and statisticians – only bio-informaticians and informaticians England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £26,240 (£12.94 per hour)
    2431 Architects – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £28,000 (£13.81 per hour)
    2461 Quality control and planning engineers – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £24,400 (£12.03 per hour)
    3111 Laboratory technicians – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £14,560 (£7.18 per hour)
    3411 Artists – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £16,800 (£8.28 per hour)
    3414 Dancers and choreographers – only skilled classical ballet dancers or skilled contemporary dancers who meet the standard required by internationally recognised UK ballet or contemporary dance companies. The company must be endorsed as being internationally recognised by a UK industry body such as the Arts Councils (of England, Scotland or Wales). England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £23,840 (£11.76 per hour)
    3415 Musicians – only skilled orchestral musicians who are leaders, principals, sub-principals or numbered string positions, and who meet the standard required by internationally recognised UK orchestras. The orchestra must be a full member of the Association of British Orchestras. England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £22,000 (£10.85 per hour)
    3416 Arts officers, producers and directors – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £24,000 (£11.83 per hour)
    3421 Graphic designers – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £18,800 (£9.27 per hour)
    5215 Welding trades – only high integrity pipe welders, where the job requires 3 or more years’ related on-the-job experience. This experience must not have been gained through illegal working. England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £18,240 (£8.99 per hour)
    6145 Care workers and home carers – private households or individuals (other than sole traders sponsoring someone to work for their business) cannot sponsor Skilled Worker applicants England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland No going rate – the salary must be at least £20,480 per year or £10.10 per hour
    6146 Senior care workers – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland 80% of going rate: £13,520 (£6.67 per hour)

    Healthcare and Education

    Occupation code Job role Areas of the UK where there is a shortage
    2212 Medical practitioners – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland
    2212 Medical practitioners – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland
    2213 Pharmacists – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland
    2217 Medical radiographers – all jobs (including radiotherapy practitioners / technologists) England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland
    2219 Health professionals not elsewhere classified – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland
    2221 Physiotherapists – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland
    2222 Occupational therapists – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland
    2223 Speech and language therapists – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland
    2231 Nurses – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland
    2314 Secondary education teaching professionals – only teachers in maths, physics, science (where an element of physics will be taught), computer science and modern foreign languages England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland
    2314 Secondary education teaching professionals – only teachers in Gaelic Scotland only
    2315 Primary and nursery education teaching professionals – only Gaelic medium teachers Scotland only
    2442 Social workers – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland
    3213 Paramedics – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland
    6141 Nursing auxiliaries and assistants – all jobs England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland

     

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      Points and the UK Shortage Occupation List

      The UK Points based system awards foreign skilled workers with points based on a number of factors. Typically, to be eligible for a Skilled Worker visa, you must score at least 70 points.

      As can be seen in the table below, having an eligible job on the shortage occupation list gains candidates an extra 20 points to go towards the 70 point minimum to qualify for a Skilled Worker visa.

      Characteristics Mandatory/Tradeable Points
      Job offer from an approved sponsor Mandatory 20
      Job at appropriate skill level Mandatory 20
      Speak English at the required level Mandatory 10
      Salary of £20,480 to £23,039 or at least 80% of the going rate for the profession (whichever is higher) Tradeable 0
      Salary of £23,040 to £25,599 or at least 90% of the going rate for the profession (whichever is higher) Tradeable 10
      Salary of £25,600 or above or at least the going rate for the profession (whichever is higher) Tradeable 20
      Job in a shortage occupation as designated by the Migration Advisory Committee Tradeable 20
      Education qualification: PhD in a subject relevant to the job Tradeable 10
      Education qualification: PhD in a STEM subject relevant to the job Tradeable 20

      Skilled Worker Visa Fees

      One of the benefits of applying for a Skilled Worker visa with a job on the shortage occupation list is being able to take advantage of reduced visa fees.

      These fees are cheaper for all applicants, regardless of how long you wish to stay in the UK for, or whether you’re applying from inside or outside the UK. There are no increased fees if you wish to apply for the visa or extend your visa from inside the UK.

      The reduced Skilled Worker visa fees for jobs on the shortage occupation list is £479 if you’re staying for up to 3 years, and £943 if you’re staying for more than 3 years.

       

      Future Reviews of the Shortage Occupation List

      It’s important to note that the UK skill shortage list is reviewed regularly by the Migration Advisory Committee and different job roles are added to, and removed from, the list regularly based on changing market needs.

      This means that the shortage occupation list may well change in the near future to accommodate changing needs and demands from UK organisations and businesses.

      Because of this, it’s worth keeping an eye out on the latest reviews and changes to the list to see if your occupation may be included in it before starting your Skilled Worker application.

      Benefits for Shortage Occupation List roles

      the benefits associated with a role being listed on the Shortage Occupation list:

      Lower Salary Threshold:

      • When a job is included in the Shortage Occupation list, applicants are allowed to be paid 80% of the going rate for that specific occupation code.
      • Points can be applied to a salary that falls up to 20% below the minimum salary threshold, which is usually set at £20,480 in most cases.
      • For most applicants, they need to earn at least £20,480 annually, which translates to £10.10 per hour or 80% of the going rate for their profession—whichever of these three options is higher.

      Reduced Home Office Visa Application Fee:

      • If a job is not listed as a shortage occupation, the visa application fees are set at £625 for a visa up to 3 years or £1,235 for a visa for more than 3 years.
      • However, if the role is included in the Shortage Occupation list, the visa application fee is significantly reduced. It becomes £479 for a visa up to 3 years or £943 for a visa lasting more than 3 years.
      • Additional fees apply for dependents, and the Immigration Health Surcharge is also applicable.

      Immigration Skills Charge Exemption:

      • Some roles that appear on the Shortage Occupation List are exempt from the Immigration Skills Charge, which is a fee that sponsoring employers typically need to pay on a yearly basis.
      • There are also instances where roles, although not listed on the shortage occupation list, are still exempt from this fee.
      • Furthermore, certain circumstances can lead to exemption from the Immigration Skills Charge. For example, students switching to a Skilled Worker visa might be exempt from this charge.

      It’s important to note that these benefits can vary based on the specific job, the occupation code, and the country’s immigration policies. When considering immigration options and potential advantages, applicants should refer to the official guidelines and the Shortage Occupation list provided by the relevant immigration authority.

      How Can Birmingham Immigration Lawyers Help?

      The shortage occupation list is another way in which skilled workers can come to the UK and work, particularly by taking advantage of schemes such as this that aim to address labour shortages in the UK.

      If you’re thinking of applying for a UK work visa, speak to Birmingham Immigration Lawyers.

      We are experts in all aspects of UK immigration and UK immigration rules, and our team of advisers and caseworkers have the requisite tools and knowledge to help you achieve your goals.

      Applying for a Skilled Worker visa can often seem daunting, but with the correct support, the process can run smoothly. If you would like help with your visa application, or to find out more about the current shortage occupation list, our lawyers are ready and waiting to help.

      Our services range from application services where we can fully complete your visa application for you, document checking services, and advisory sessions where we can grant extra reassurance for your immigration needs.

      To find out how we can assist you, call our team today on 0121 667 6530.

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                Frequently Asked Questions

                If your job isn’t one of the shortage occupations, you will still be able to apply for a Skilled Worker or Health and Care Worker visa as long as you meet all the other requirements. These include having a job that is on the list of eligible occupations, accruing enough points in the point-based immigration system, and having an eligible job offer from a licenced, Home Office-approved sponsor in the UK.

                We can help if you need to apply for a work visa to come to the UK. Call us on 0121 667 6530 or contact us online for help with your situation today.

                If you wish to apply for a Skilled Worker or Health and Social Care Worker visa, you will first need a job offer from a Home Office-approved sponsor.

                The easiest way to find a job such as this is to consult online job boards. There are a range of job boards that are popular in the UK, with many small and niche boards targeting specific occupations or industries.

                You may also wish to sign up to a recruitment agency in the UK, who may be able to help you find a position.

                You must ensure that your prospective employer is able to sponsor foreign workers, or will soon apply to become able to. The Home Office has a list of approved sponsors on their website that you can consult for this purpose.

                There are a range of requirements you must adhere to for the Skilled Worker visa in addition to having a valid job offer. These include the following:

                • You must be at least 18 years of age
                • You must speak English to at least Level B1 on the CEFR scale
                • Your salary must equal or exceed the minimum salary threshold and the average going rate for the position
                • You must prove that you meet the minimum financial requirements to support yourself and any dependents

                You may also have to demonstrate additional eligibility to the UK government depending on your specific job.

                The Shortage Occupation List now includes nursing, including nursing assistants, and care work, providing increased job opportunities, particularly for asylum seekers.

                As well as nursing, nursing assistants, care work, all of which can come under the NHS, there is also social care worker and home care workers now on the shortage list too.

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