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Careers employer guide to understanding visas

Find out more about the types of visas available to our international students.

April 2024 - Due to the recent changes to the Skilled Worker Visa, this webpage is under review.

With so much great talent available, here are two more great reasons to consider hiring international students and graduates:

Graduate visa

The Graduate visa will be available to international students who have successfully completed a degree in the UK. This will enable international students to remain in the UK and work in any job in any sector. It will be an unsponsored route.

Key benefits of the Graduate visa route:

  • no need for sponsorship or endorsement by employer or university
  • graduates can work at any level
  • graduates can stay in the UK to work for up to two years (three years for PhD graduates)
  • all graduates (on a valid Student visa) are eligible upon successful completion of their course
  • all graduates can apply from the UK

Skilled Worker visa

The new Skilled Worker visa came into effect on 1 December 2020 and has major advantages for employers and students compared with the Tier 2 (General) visa it replaces.

Key benefits of the Skilled Worker visa route:

  • minimum skills threshold lowered, resulting in more non-graduate level jobs being eligible for visa sponsorship
  • salary threshold lowered from £20,480/y for new entrants (current students) to £25,600/y for experienced hires
  • no requirement for sponsors to undertake Resident Labour Market Test
  • employers exempt from Immigration Skills Charge for students on Student/Tier 4 visas switching to this visa
  • no restriction on the period that can be spent on a Skilled Worker visa
  • all students can apply from the UK

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