How to support your sponsored skilled workers in the UK

sponsored skilled workers

How to support your sponsored skilled workers in the UK

Given the shortage of skilled workers in the UK labour market, sponsoring talent is a great way to get the best talent from around the world to work for you and improve diversity, innovation, and productivity within your organisation.

But, moving to a new country for work can be a daunting experience for your sponsored employees. From experiencing culture shock to difficulties in getting used to the workflows in your organisation, the first few months can be a really difficult period of transition for them.

On top of this, they must ensure that they comply with their visa terms and conditions, which can add considerable pressure on your team. The good news is that there are many measures you can implement to guide your employees through the first few months and help them settle into their new environment.

So, what can you do as an employer to support your sponsored talent?

Help them adapt to their new surroundings

Getting acclimated to their new environment will be the biggest challenge your employees will face. You can ease their transition into the UK by helping them find the right accommodation, getting them a UK phone number, setting up a bank account, and registering them with a GP practice.

Implementing buddy programmes and creating a welcoming environment within your teams can also help them settle into their new surroundings more swiftly.

If English is not their first language, enrolling them in an English language class can help them gain a better grasp of the language and boost their confidence when forming interpersonal relationships in their new environment.

Guide them throughout their immigration journey in the UK

Many skilled workers who arrive in the UK to work also have the intention of becoming permanent residents. While the journey towards naturalisation can be long and complex, you can support your employees throughout the process if they wish to become a citizen of the UK.

If you’re already sponsoring an employee and they’ve completed their residency requirements, you can help them take the next step in applying for Indefinite Leave to Remain or even citizenship.

You can offer them information about the application process and the Home Office fee yourself or help them find an agent or representative who will create the citizenship or ILR application on their behalf. If you want to take your support to the next level, consider helping your employees apply for and prepare for the Life in the UK test, which is an essential test they have to pass to become eligible for citizenship.

Support them with their compliance responsibilities

Similar to the compliance responsibilities you have as a sponsor, your sponsored employees must also comply with a range of requirements in line with the terms of their visa.

For example, your sponsored employees need to register with the police within 7 days of their arrival to the UK if the visa vignette in their passport says any of the following:

  • Police registration
  • Register with police in 7 days of entry
  • Pol Reg
  • Pol Registration
  • Police Registration within 7 days of UK entry
  • Police Registration within 7 days of arrival
  • Police Registration within 7 days of arrival in the UK

Since the process of registration differs based on where your employees are staying after they arrive in the UK, they might find it difficult to go to the right police station and complete the registration process. Here, you can assist them through the process and get them registered with the police.

Your employees also need to ensure that they have a valid visa to stay in the UK. You can track the visa status of your sponsored employees and remind them when their visa is about to expire. If they wish to extend their work visa, this is a process you can assist them with as well.

On top of this support, you could also help your employees with tracking the days they spend outside the UK if they intend to apply for ILR. If they’re sponsored through the Skilled Worker route, they must have spent no more than 180 days outside the Uk in any 12-month period before applying for ILR.

By tracking their days outside the UK and communicating this number to them, you can help them meet the terms of their visa. 

Give your sponsored workers the structure they need to create an engaged and high-performance workforce

If you’re sponsoring skilled workers in your organisation, making sure they feel welcome and supported is the best way to ensure higher retention rates and a happier, more successful workforce. 

Supporting them throughout their stay in the UK and helping them acclimatise to their new surroundings is an essential part of this process. 

If you’d like to learn more about how to support your sponsored talent and explore how the Nation.better platform can support your endeavours, get in touch with our team.

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