Applying for a Global Talent Visa as an Engineer

Engineering is a key industry in the UK. It drives economic growth and productivity, while serving as a platform for innovation.

As a result, it’s responsible for creating millions of jobs.

In fact, almost 20 per cent of the UK’s workforce is employed in engineering. And this is set to rise even further to meet future demand in a post-pandemic world.

Unsurprisingly then, when it comes to immigration, engineers are sought-after applicants. Particularly as the renewables and nuclear sectors are expected to become even more central to the UK’s economy.

So, to encourage engineers from around the world to work in the UK, a specific visa route has been created. It’s called the Global Talent Visa.

What is the Global Talent Visa?

For those familiar with UK immigration, the Global Talent Visa replaced the Tier 1 Exceptional Talent Visa in February 2020.

The purpose of the Global Talent Visa is similar to its predecessor. It offers a pathway for people considered as a leader or an emerging leader in their profession to come to the UK.

The Global Talent Visa is divided into six specific industries, with engineering being one of them. For applicants that are successful, they can then live and work in the UK for up to five years.

As with many visa categories, the process to be granted a Global Talent Visa involves a series of steps.

The first part is to be endorsed by a government-designated endorsing body. It has to be relevant to your specific industry or line of work.

In the case of engineering, it’s the Royal Academy of Engineering.

The next step is for the endorsement to be approved by the Home Office. Then you can submit the visa application.

But first, let’s take a look at the Royal Academy of Engineering.

The Royal Academy of Engineering

The Royal Academy of Engineering was set up in 1976 to establish the UK as a leading nation for engineering innovation and business.

As renewable technology becomes more crucial for society, the Academy has a strong focus on sustainability. At the same time, it wants to pursue an inclusive economy through engineering.

When it comes to endorsement requests for the Global Talent Visa, the Royal Academy of Engineering will notify the Home Office of its decision on individual applicants. Only then can the application process continue.

In fact, without endorsement from the Academy, you cannot apply for a Global Talent Visa, which makes it an important first step in the process.

There are four routes to endorsement by the Academy:

  • Accepting a senior appointment at a UK higher education or research institution
  • Accepting an individual fellowship at an approved organisation
  • As an endorsed funder approved by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI)
  • Full peer review by the Royal Academy of Engineering

Global Talent Visa application process

The next step is for the Home Office to approve the endorsement by the Royal Academy of Engineering.

There are two ways for an applicant to be endorsed:

  • Endorsement as a leader (exceptional talent)
  • Endorsement as an emerging leader (exceptional promise)

The fee for the approval application is £456 and it usually takes eight weeks to be processed.

Then you can move on to the visa application, which costs £152, or £97 if you’re from Turkey or Macedonia. Most people get a decision within three weeks.

You can submit both the endorsement and the visa application at the same time. However, if the endorsement is rejected, the visa application will also be denied.

What can I do with the visa?

The conditions of the Global Talent Visa are quite generous.

Visa holders can live and work in the UK for up to five years. During that time, you can change jobs without applying for permission from the British government and leave the UK for travel. You can even bring family members to live with you.

Then, if you enjoy living and working in the UK, you can apply to make it permanent.

You can apply for settlement:

  • After three years if you have an exceptional talent visa
  • After three years with an endorsement by the UKRI endorsed funder scheme

So, if you’re an engineer overseas and would like to contribute to the growing engineering sector in the UK, the Global Talent Visa could provide an immigration pathway.

Not only does it offer the opportunity to pursue an international career. It’s also a chance to sample British life before making a permanent move.



Article Created By Hayley Maguire

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