Employer's role in getting a work visa

Many people have misunderstandings about the role of the employer in getting a work visa. The visa is the responsibility of the worker and they have the most to do in the application, the success of the application depends strongly on whether the employer has done their part properly.

Employers need to understand that hiring a migrant worker is not more difficult than hiring a New Zealand resident or citizen, but there are certain requirements that must be met.

Common reasons for application failure include:

  • The job advertising was not done properly. This can be very important because if the wording of the advertising, or the way of advertising is not up to standard INZ may not judge that sufficient attempt has been made to find NZ workers first. In some cases you don't need to advertise, but the difference is not always well known.
  •  Inconsistency in the job description, advertising and information in the employer supplementary form
  • Additional documents that are either not relevant or not complete, which does little to support the application

Some of the factors which make it the best choice to hire a certain person of a job don't always lead to a good visa application, so even though the employer thinks INZ must approve the application because the worker is very valuable to them, INZ don't always think the same way. Some employers misunderstand that INZ should be supporting their business because it helps the economic growth of the country, but INZ don't always see it this way, they are more focused on whether the individual migrant worker is good for the country. This is not always the same thing.

Important points to think about for employers

  • The visa application should be easy for you if your worker is using a licensed immigration adviser. It is usual for the cost of the application and adviser to be borne by the worker as they are our client by definition
  • The adviser will communicate with the employer on any matter about the application without charging you for this work. This makes it easy for you to prepare the necessary documents quickly and correctly
  • It is often in the employers best interests to encourage the worker to go through a licensed immigration adviser because the application will be smoother and the employee can start work sooner. If the application is done poorly, it may be declined or may take longer to approve. 

Summary of what the employer must do

  • Advertise the position if necessary. Advertisements must be fair and accurate
  • Provide all the necessary documentations such as: employer supplementary form, job description, job offer, employment contract and so on
  • Depending on the skill level and region you may need to list the job with the Canterbury Employment hub or get a skills match report from MSD

This is the usual scope of the employer's role, but some applications may require additional information. No two applications are the same and each application needs to be tailored to the employee's individual situation 


Doing it right the first time is better for your business and for your employee.


If you are an employer and want to find out more about using a licensed immigration adviser for your migrant worker's visa application, just send us an email and we'll be happy to answer your questions. adviser@immigrate.kiwi.nz