Uncover how SkillSelect Invitation Rounds work in 2024

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Table of Contents

    Corazon Jasa

    Written: December 23, 2023

    Updated: January 22, 2024

    20 min read

    SkillSelect Invitation Round

    Are you trying to navigate the waters of Australia’s skilled migration process? The path to securing your future down under can feel labyrinthine, with many potential migrants finding themselves confused by the complexity of Visa application systems.

    One critical step in this journey is understanding SkillSelect Invitation Rounds – a pivotal element that could make or break your dream of becoming an Aussie resident.

    In 2022-23 alone, over 35,000 candidates received invites through these rounds, signaling opportunities and hope for countless professionals worldwide. This article will demystify the process and offer clarity on how these invitation rounds work, what you need to qualify, and most importantly, how to boost your chances in the competitive pool of applicants.

    Key Takeaways

    • SkillSelect Invitation Rounds help Australia choose skilled workers to come live and work in the country. These rounds happen often, and you need to have a high points score from your EOI to get invited.
    • There are limits on how many people can get invites for certain jobs. This is called an occupation ceiling. It makes sure not too many people come for one type of job.
    • To be part of the invitation rounds, you must follow some rules like having skills Australia needs and getting enough points for things like age and English ability.
    • In December 2022, a big round happened where 35,120 people got invited. This shows that lots of chances are there for skilled workers to move to Australia.
    • States and territories in Australia also pick people through nomination rounds. They look at different things than the national government does when they choose who gets an invited.

    Eligibility for SkillSelect Invitation Rounds

    You need to meet certain rules to be part of SkillSelect invitation rounds. Here’s what you must have:

    • Point-based system: Your points matter a lot. You get points for things like your age, English skills, work history, and education.
    • Skilled migration: You should have a skill on the occupation list. This list says which jobs Australia needs.
    • Visa subclass: Know the right visa for you. Two common ones are the Skilled Independent Visa (subclass 189) and the Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) Visa (subclass 491).
    • Occupation list: Make sure your job is on the right list. There are different lists for different visas.
    • Expression of interest: Tell about yourself through an expression of interest or EOI. Share your work experience and what you’ve studied.
    • Work experience assessment: Get your work history checked out. This shows if your job skills match Australian standards.
    • Qualification assessment: Have someone look at your school or training. They’ll see if it’s equal to Australian qualifications.
    • Basic eligibility criteria: Check all the basic rules, like how old you are and if you can speak English well.
    • Occupation ceilings: Understand there’s a limit on how many people in each job can come to Australia each year.
    • Invitation round schedule: Keep an eye out for when they invite people next. These happen often during the year.

    Detailed Overview of Invitation Rounds in 2023 Program Year

    In the 2023 Program Year, a significant number of invitations were issued for Skilled Independent Visas (subclass 189) and Skilled Work Regional Visas (subclass 491) – Family Sponsored.

    The point scores and dates of effect cut off provide valuable insights into the immigration process for skilled workers.

    Invitations Issued

    Take a close look at the invitations issued for the 2023 programme year, highlighting the significant uptick in numbers as part of SkillSelect’s immigration process. The Labour Government’s commitment to invite skilled workers is evident in the figures below, which showcase an unprecedented level of invitations extended to potential migrants.

    Here’s a summarised snapshot of the invitations issued in the SkillSelect Invitation Rounds up till December 18 2023.

    Visa subclass Number Tie break / date of effect month
    Skilled Independent visa (subclass 189) 8,300 11/2023
    Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) visa (subclass 491) – Family Sponsored 79 12/2023

    Australia set a remarkable precedent on 8 December 2022, by conducting its most substantial invitation round to date. A colossal 35,120 candidates received invitations, displaying the country’s urgency to fill the skilled workforce gap. This approach reflects the Labour Government’s strategy to strengthen the nation’s economic recovery post-pandemic.

    State and territory governments continue to nominate candidates throughout the month, contributing to the robust immigration system and enhancing the diversity of skills brought into the country. These efforts are aligned with the specific needs of each region, addressing skill shortages and supporting local economies.

    Occupations Included

    Understanding which occupations were included in the SkillSelect invitation rounds is crucial for prospective applicants. Let’s delve into the specific fields that were prioritised in the 2023 December program year.

    Occupation* 189 491
    Audiologist 65 70
    Child Care Centre Manager 65 N/A*
    Chiropractor 65 N/A*
    Clinical Haematologist 65 N/A*
    Clinical Psychologist 70 90
    Dermatologist 80 N/A*
    Diagnostic and Interventional Radiologist 65 N/A*
    Early Childhood (Pre-primary School) Teacher 65 65
    Educational Psychologist 70 N/A*
    Emergency Medicine Specialist 65 N/A*
    Endocrinologist 95 N/A*
    General Practitioner 65 N/A*
    Intensive Care Specialist 65 N/A*
    Medical Diagnostic Radiographer 65 65
    Medical Laboratory Scientist 65 75
    Medical Oncologist 65 N/A*
    Medical Practitioners nec 65 75
    Medical Radiation Therapist 65 N/A*
    Midwife 65 70
    Neurosurgeon 80 N/A*
    Nuclear Medicine Technologist 65 N/A*
    Nurse Practitioner 65 N/A*
    Obstetrician and Gynaecologist 65 N/A*
    Occupational Therapist 65 70
    Ophthalmologist 80 N/A*
    Optometrist 65 N/A*
    Orthopaedic Surgeon 65 N/A*
    Orthotist or Prosthetist 65 N/A*
    Osteopath 65 N/A*
    Paediatrician 65 N/A*
    Pathologist 80 N/A*
    Physiotherapist 65 65
    Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon 70 N/A*
    Podiatrist 65 N/A*
    Psychiatrist 65 N/A*
    Psychologists nec 65 65
    Registered Nurse (Aged Care) 65 65
    Registered Nurse (Child and Family Health) 65 N/A*
    Registered Nurse (Community Health) 65 N/A*
    Registered Nurse (Critical Care and Emergency) 65 65
    Registered Nurse (Developmental Disability) 70 N/A*
    Registered Nurse (Disability and Rehabilitation) 65 90
    Registered Nurse (Medical Practice) 65 N/A*
    Registered Nurse (Medical) 65 65
    Registered Nurse (Mental Health) 65 N/A*
    Registered Nurse (Paediatrics) 65 85
    Registered Nurse (Perioperative) 65 N/A*
    Registered Nurse (Surgical) 65 N/A*
    Registered Nurses nec 65 65
    Secondary School Teacher 65 70
    Social Worker 65 70
    Sonographer 65 N/A*
    Special Education Teachers nec 65 N/A*
    Special Needs Teacher 65 N/A*
    Specialist Physician (General Medicine) 65 N/A*
    Specialist Physicians nec 65 N/A*
    Speech Pathologist 65 85
    Surgeon (General) 80 N/A*

    The table above presents a snapshot of the health and education-related occupations that received invitations. Approximately 6,100 invitations were issued in these sectors during the 2022-23 program year. This data demonstrates a strong demand for professionals in these areas, reflecting the ongoing commitment to bolstering Australia’s workforce in essential services.

    Understanding SkillSelect Invitation Rounds

    SkillSelect Invitation Rounds are a crucial part of the skilled migration process in Australia, determining who will receive an invitation to apply for a skilled visa. These rounds are conducted regularly and consider various factors such as occupation ceilings, point scores, and eligibility criteria.

    Definition and Overview

    SkillSelect Invitation Rounds play a big role in the immigration and citizenship process in Australia. Think of them as special events where people with skills that Australia needs can get invited to apply for a visa.

    These rounds happen often, and they pick out who has the highest points score from their Expression of Interest (EOI). If your EOI impresses, you might be asked to take the next step towards calling Australia home.

    These invitation rounds focus on two main visas: the Skilled Independent Visa (subclass 189) and the Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) Visa (subclass 491) – Family Sponsored. Both are about finding skilled workers from outside Australia.

    To live and work in places like Western Australia under these visas, you need an Australian state or territory to give you a nod through nomination.

    Types of Invitation Rounds

    SkillSelect helps you move to Australia if you have good skills. It uses invitation rounds to pick who can apply for a visa. Let’s dive into the types of these rounds:

    • SkillSelect Invitation Rounds:
    • State/Territory Nomination Rounds:

    The Invitation Round Process

    Getting invited to apply for an Australian visa through SkillSelect is a big step. The process involves several stages that you need to know.

    • Every month on the 11th day, the Department of Home Affairs releases information about the latest SkillSelect invitation rounds.
    • They send out invitations quarterly, with the number depending on how many applications they get and sort through.
    • First, you submit an Expression of Interest (EOI) to show you want to move to Australia and mention your skills.
    • Your EOI gets points for things like your age, work experience, education, and English skills.
    • If your job is in demand, there are ‘occupation ceilings.’ These are limits on how many people in each job can come in a year.
    • People with higher points get picked first when it comes time to invite.
    • For targeted jobs, only the best scoring folks will get invitations. These jobs are very important for Australia’s needs.
    • On February 2020, they gave out 1,500 invites for the Skilled Independent visa subclass 189 as part of this process.
    • So far this program year, over 59,000 invites went out for this same visa class!
    • You need to meet some basic rules or ‘eligibility criteria‘ for visas and jobs.
    • After getting your invite, expect up to 45 months for them to finish checking everything. That’s how long it could take now for a Subclass 189 visa.

    Occupation Ceilings in Invitation Rounds

    Job limits, or occupation ceilings, are set for certain jobs during the visa invitation rounds. This means there is a cap on how many people can get invited to apply for visas in specific fields.

    For example, health and education workers had about 6,100 spots available while engineers and other tech experts had nearly 16,000 invites in one round. These caps help manage the number of skilled workers coming into Australia in different industries.

    Invitations under Subclass 189 and Subclass 491 visas get affected by these job limits too. If lots of people want to move to Australia for work, they might find it harder if their job has reached its limit for invites.

    Each month, these numbers can change who gets picked first based on points scored and other rules like family sponsorship needs. This keeps things fair and meets what Australian businesses need from overseas talent.

    Point Scores and Dates of Effect Cut Off

    Delving into the intricacies of SkillSelect Invitation Rounds, point scores and dates of effect play a pivotal role. These are the thresholds that potential migrants must exceed to stand a chance of receiving an invitation to apply for Australian visas. The specific details for the 2022-23 Programme Year reflect the competitive nature of the process, where higher points often equate to better chances of success.

    Here’s a snapshot of the cut-off points and their effective dates for the December 2022 round:

    Subclass 189 (Skilled Independent Visa) – Minimum Points 65 – Latest date by which applicants reached the score

    Subclass 491 (Skilled Work Regional (Provisional) Visa) – Minimum Points 65 – Latest date by which applicants reached the score

    All candidates must note that the cut-off scores are subject to change based on the number of applicants and the demand for specific occupations. High-scoring candidates are prioritised, ensuring invitations are offered to the most competitive profiles. Remember, securing the minimum score does not guarantee an invitation; it simply makes you eligible for consideration. Keep this in mind as you prepare your application, aiming to maximise your points wherever possible.

    Review of Past Invitation Rounds

    Take a look at the past invitation rounds, including the 2021-22 and 2020-21 program years, to gain insights into historical trends and patterns. Understanding previous invitation rounds can provide valuable context for the current year’s process.

    2021-22 Program Year

    In the 2021-22 program year, invitations for skilled migration were issued quarterly from May 2020. The highest number of invitations was in December 2022 for the Skilled Independent visa (subclass 189) by the Labour Government. However, in October, the Skill Select invitation round saw the lowest number of invitations compared to earlier months that year. Notably, on July 26, a total of 750 invitations were issued, with 500 specifically for a Subclass 189 Skilled Independent visa.

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    2020-21 Program Year

    In the 2020-21 Programme Year, the Department of Home Affairs scrutinised Australia’s skilled migration programme. They published invitation Round results for various dates in 2020, including 21 October. In February 2020, there were 1,500 invitations issued for skilled independent visas. Additionally, April 2020 saw a total of 8,650 invitations under the independent skilled visa scheme.

    The Department of Home Affairs conducted an enquiry into Australia’s skilled migration programme in 2020-21 to ensure its efficacy and transparency. These actions reflect their commitment to managing skilled migration efficiently while offering permanent residency opportunities to deserving candidates.

    State and Territory Nominations in 2023 Program Year

    In the 2023 Program Year, various states and territories in Australia have conducted their own invitation rounds to nominate skilled migrants for visas. Each region has specific criteria and occupations in demand, making it important for prospective applicants to stay updated on these nomination processes.

    Australian Capital Territory (ACT) Invitation Round

    In the 2022-23 program year, the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) has a set number of nomination places available each month for skilled migration. These are pro-rata against the yearly program and are allocated to applicants based on their Canberra Matrix score.

    The Department of Home Affairs allows ACT Government to nominate candidates for Skilled Work visas under state/territory sponsorship. ACT received an increased allocation for both subclass 190 and subclass 491 visas this program year, providing more opportunities for skilled visa applicants.

    Applicants must keep in mind that invitations are mandatory for all skilled visa seekers under the SkillSelect system and state/territory nomination rounds. For those applying through Canberra Matrix, the next invitation round is scheduled for 27 November 2023.

    New South Wales (NSW) Invitation Round

    Moving on to the New South Wales (NSW) Invitation Round, it’s essential to note that the state nomination program for the 2022-23 program year in NSW is still open. With 24 spots available for 190 visas and 314 seats allocated for 491 visas, opportunities are present.

    Moreover, the NSW skilled migration program will continue throughout this financial year with cyclic invitation rounds occurring.

    The information regarding state and territory allocations for skilled invitation rounds will persistently be provided throughout this year as per Australian government standards. Given that significant numbers of candidates were invited in the recent SkillSelect round conducted by the Australian government, it’s evident that these invitation rounds for state and territory nominations under the SkillSelect program will continue extensively throughout this financial period.

    The Role of Immigration Agents in Invitation Rounds

    Migration agents assist with understanding visa requirements, preparing Expression of Interest (EOI), and navigating the visa application process. They stay updated on visa changes, ensuring their clients are well-informed.

    Additionally, they help gather necessary documentation for applications and support in lodging the EOI along with responding to requests from the Department of Home Affairs. Throughout the process, immigration agents represent their clients’ best interests and can also assist in appealing visa refusals or cancellations.

    These experts provide crucial guidance on EOI preparation, visa application processes, and documentation gathering. They act as a valuable resource in understanding immigration policies and ensure that applicants are equipped to navigate through the complexities of the system while staying up-to-date with any policy changes or updates.

    Furthermore, migration agents play an integral role in representing their clients’ interests throughout each stage of the visa application process, offering essential support during what can often be a challenging endeavor.


    In conclusion, SkillSelect Invitation Rounds are crucial for skilled workers wanting to migrate to Australia. The process identifies suitable migrants and issues invitations based on points scores and occupation ceilings.

    Stay informed about the latest invitation rounds as they play a significant role in the immigration and citizenship process. Understanding these rounds can provide valuable insights into the visa invitation process for potential migrants seeking permanent residency in Australia.


    CJMigration is a well-respected Sydney migration agency with over 30 years of experience in the industry. We can help guide you through the process and achieve your immigration goals.

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