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As digitalization puts software and computer engineering at the center of many company models today, the availability of exciting software engineer jobs in Australia has never been higher. With efficiency as a primary aim, people can immigrate to Australia as software programmers and IT experts. In addition, software programmers that can construct, develop, and manage unique software systems are in great demand.

During the Covid-19 outbreak in Australia, the Department of Home Affairs established a list of Priority Migration Skilled Occupations for jobs requiring key skills to aid Australia’s economic recovery. Any skilled application with a profession on this list (like ) submitted to the Department is granted priority processing.

Australia encourages competent software programmers to relocate to the country since it is a highly sought-after vocation. Software programmers are now on the Medium & Long Term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL), giving them access to various Australian immigration visa programs.

This article will talk about how to immigrate to Australia as a software programmer and IT, their visa options, salary, requirements, etc. 

Table of Contents

What does a Software Programmer Do in Australia? 

A software programmer is in charge of creating and maintaining software applications. To do this, a software programmer will study user demands and design, construct, and test programs that fulfill those goals.

A software programmer works with other IT experts such as designers, engineers, business analysts, project managers, and Data Scientists. This is done to guarantee that the project’s desired outcomes and an organization’s goals are met.

A Software Engineer 261313 is described as follows by Australian Immigration:

“creates, edits, documents, analyzes, implements, installs, and maintains software programs and systems.”

The Australian Immigration Department also establishes the qualifications necessary for a Software Engineer to come to Australia per the Australian Qualification Framework (“AQF”).

This is measured in Competence Levels, and the skill level for a software programmer or engineer is 1. This translates to Skill Level 1.

Skill Level 1 occupations need a skill equivalent to a bachelor’s degree or above. It is acceptable if at least five years of relevant experience are substituted for a formal qualification. Besides the official certification, there may be a need for relevant experience and/or on-the-job training.

Are Software Programmers and IT in demand in Australia? 

While software engineering is popular in Australia, the market is quite competitive. So, if you intend to migrate there, you better start your application process, from visa application to moving assistance to Australia. That is, the in-demand job will make your transition smoother and faster.

Businesses’ difficulty finding a suitable and experienced applicant might be one of the reasons for the increased demand for software programmers and IT. As a result, they hire recruiters even though many people are waiting in line to join them.

This makes this a great option for people looking to immigrate to Australia. They can happily take the software programmer route to Australia. As a result, their goal will come true, and Australia will benefit from accepting more Software Engineers to serve its people.

The Skilled Occupation List includes Software Engineer, which the Australian government classifies as Medium & Long-Term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL). You might be a suitable candidate if you have exceptional skills in this field and are capable of becoming a Software Engineer.

Required Skills for Immigrant Software Programmers in Australia

The top software developers will have vast experience working on various projects that need expertise in several coding languages. A working understanding of source control systems and the software development cycle is also required. To work as a software programmer, you must acquire a variety of hard and soft talents.

Hard skills:

  • Knowledge of computer programming languages (e.g., Java, C++, C#)
  • Operating system knowledge (e.g., Windows, Unix/Linux)
  • Understanding of tools for software development (e.g., Microsoft Visual Studio, Eclipse)
  • Knowledge of relational database systems and SQL
  • The ability to create technical documents and diagrams as needed

Soft skills: 

  • Analytical and problem-solving abilities
  • Capability to operate successfully as a group
  • Vision and the ability to handle projects from start to finish
  • Excellent communication skills are required to convey complicated issues to non-technical stakeholders.

Software Programmer Job Responsibilities

  • Construct, create, and administer software systems
  • Collect information and describe the requirements for the system or application.
  • Consult with designers, business analysts, and project managers to determine the most efficient method of creating and implementing the program.
  • Write code and manage software testing to ensure that all defects are eliminated.
  • Examine their code as well as the codes of their coworkers.
  • Start the program and keep an eye on it until the final release.
  • Identify and provide potential remedies to address shortcomings in current systems or procedures. 

What Australian Employers Hire Immigrant Software Programmers?  

The need for software programmers has never been higher. Many businesses have begun to adapt their business model approach to a more significant emphasis on the effect of technology assets, particularly software systems.

As a result, numerous sectors want the skills of software programmers, including IT businesses, financial services or fintech, eCommerce, the public sector, start-ups, and any company undergoing digital transformation.

What Industries Offer Jobs to Immigrant Software Programmers in Australia?

Software Engineer positions are available in a variety of sectors, including: 

  • Defense 
  • Telecommunications
  • Energy and Utilities
  • Financial Services
  • Retail and E-commerce
  • Manufacturing
  • Government & Public Sector
  • Insurance

Any business that wants to create complicated software will need software engineers. In addition, talented engineers are essential in ensuring that software systems fulfill a wide range of needs, including the functional and security requirements required for firms to prosper. 

What Technologies do Software Programmers Use in Australia? 

  • Databases: MongoDB, Microsoft SQL Server, Oracle, and MySQL. 
  • Communication Platforms: Teams, Google Meets, Slack, Zoom, etc.
  • Programming Languages: React.js, Java, Node.js, C, Python, C#, C++, and JavaScript, among others.
  • Other: Have worked with Linux, UNIX, and Cloud systems, e.g., Azure and AWS. 

How Can Immigrant Software Programmers Calculate Their Australian Immigration Points?

To get your Immigration Points Total, add your points from each component.

Age Points to Immigrate to Australia as a Software Programmer and IT

Your age points are counted as being inside an age band until the day before your birthday when you are moved into the next bracket. So, for instance, you are between 18 and 24 until the day before your 25th birthday. Then, for point reasons, you advance to the next age group on the day of your 25th birthday.

  • 18 to 24 years old: 25 points
  • 25 to 32 years old: 30 points
  • 33 to 39 years old: 25 points
  • 40 to 44 years old: 15 points

Australian Skilled Migration now has a 45-year-old age restriction. After 45, you are no longer eligible for skilled migration; nevertheless, you may be able to relocate to Australia via one of the country’s numerous other visa programs. Take our Free Visa Assessment to determine which visa alternatives are available.

The English Language Points to Immigrate to Australia as a Software Programmer and IT

  • 20 points are considered Good.
  • 10 points are considered Medium.
  • 0 points are considered Basic.

Work Experience Points to Immigrate to Australia as a Software Programmer and IT

5 points: Working experience of 3 to 5 years.

10 points: Working experience of 5 to 8 years.

15 points: Working experience of 8 years or more.

Note: If you are working in your qualified profession after submitting your application, your work experience continues. When Australian Immigration makes their final tally of points, you will be in the next upper band if you want to move into the next experience band for work experience.

Qualification Points to Immigrate to Australia as a Software Programmer and IT

  • 20 points for a PhD.
  • 15 points for a Degree.
  • 10 points for a Trade Qualification. 

Community Language Skills Points to Immigrate to Australia as a Software Programmer and IT

Languages that are eligible for bonus points for software developer immigration to Australia:

Japanese

Bosnian

Nuer

Vietnamese

Dari

Persian

Dinka

Arabic

Spanish

Portuguese

Hindi

Serbian

Albanian

Sinhalese

German

Indonesian

Czech

Bulgarian

Polish

Hazaragi

Nepali

Turkish

Cantonese

Finnish

Croatian

Tongan

Hungarian

Bangla

Armenian

Auslan

Khmer

Filipino

Italian

Korean

Dutch

Tigrinya

Samoan

Tetum

Somali

Macedonian

Oromo

Mandarin

Pushto

Urdu

French

Punjabi

Amharic

Greek

Ukrainian

Chinese

Burmese

Thai

Malay

Russian

Lao

Swahili

Romanian

Tamil

The NAATI (National Accreditation Authority for Translators and Interpreters) must accredit you to gain 5 extra points for a credentialed Community Language. NAATI testing must be passed at Level 2 or above. It is not sufficient to merely speak the language; you must also be certified to get the extra 5 points.

Points for Regional Area and State Sponsorship.

In all cases, we will apply for Permanent Residency under the category of State Sponsored Visas. To obtain a State Sponsorship Visa, you will need to add 5 additional points, and the Regional Visa 491 option will require 15 extra points.

Points for Partner Skills for Australian Skilled Migration

You can get an extra 5 points if your spouse is likewise qualified for a job on the Occupations in Demand Lists and is prepared to undergo the skills assessment for that job.

Calculate Your Points

The minimum number of points required to be eligible for Australian Skilled Migration is 65. If you have not yet attained age 65, please contact us by filling out this free visa evaluation. There are also alternative ways to earn points that you could be eligible for and other visa options. Too many people believe they do not qualify when, in fact, they do. Click here to calculate your points.

How Can You Immigrate to Australia as a Software Programmer and IT?

You may begin working on your migration case when you have pleased ANZSCO and determined a minimum of 65 emigration points.

Step 1. Skills Assessment

The general skilled migration program requires you to obtain a skills assessment before applying for a permanent residency or provisional skilled migration visa. This assessment authority has jurisdiction over software engineers in the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) sector, which falls within the Australian Computer Society (ACS).

Software engineers utilize engineering, mathematics, and computer science skills to develop software. Also, they oversee the entire software development cycle, which involves analyzing the client’s requirements, designing and developing the program, and testing it once it has been developed.

To apply for a skills evaluation, you must submit the following documents:

  • A photocopy of your passport
  • Your CV or resume
  • Qualifications in education (containing academic transcripts and award certificates/completion letters for Australian and international qualifications)
  • References to employment on business letterhead or third-party statutory declarations
  • Payment confirmation from each of your employers
  • Detailed references for each position you’ve held
  • Identification documentation The Skills Assessment is a required component of the Australia Emigration process, and we cannot proceed to the next step of the application without it. The number on your Skills Assessment certificate must be supplied for the next stage of the procedure.

You must fulfill the following requirements to receive a favorable skills assessment:

  • Qualification equivalent to an AQF Bachelor Degree or higher with a major in ICT
    • The following is necessary if the candidate has finished a course with an ICT Major that is closely relevant to the vocation of software programmer:
      • 2 years of relevant job experience gained in the last ten years; or
      • 4 years of relevant job experience completed at any point in your previous employment career
    • If the candidate has finished an ICT Major course that is NOT strongly relevant to the vocation of software programmer, the following is required:
      • 4 years of relevant job experience completed at any point in your previous employment career
  • Qualification equal to or greater than an AQF Bachelor Degree with an ICT Minor
    • If the candidate has completed a course with an ICT Minor that is closely related to the profession of software programmer, the following is required:
      • 5 years of relevant work experience in the past 10 years; or
      • 6 years of relevant job experience gained at any time throughout your prior professional career
    • If an applicant has completed a course with an ICT Minor that is NOT directly related to a job as a software programmer, the following prerequisites must be met:
      • 6 years of relevant job experience gained at any time throughout your prior professional career
  • Equivalent to an AQF Diploma or Vendor Certification
    • The following is necessary if the candidate has finished a course with an ICT Major that is closely relevant to the vocation of software programmer:
      • 5 years of relevant job experience gained in the last 10 years; or
      • 6 years of relevant job experience completed at any point in your previous employment career
    • If the candidate has finished an ICT Major course that is NOT powerfully relevant to the vocation of software programmer, the following is required:
      • 6 years of relevant job experience completed at any point in your previous employment career
  • Prior learning was also recognized by ACS (RPL).
    • If the candidate holds an equivalent AQF Diploma or higher Non-ICT Qualification, the following is required:
      • 6 years of relevant job experience accomplished at any point in your previous employment history; and
      • Application for Recognizing Prior Learning
    • If the candidate has no tertiary education and just job experience, the following must be provided:
      • 8 years of related job experience
      • Application of Prior Learning Recognition

Note: Please remember that a previous learning application asks you to indicate how you obtained your ICT skills. With an RPL application, you must submit two Project Reports.

  • ACS recognizes the vendor certifications below as equivalent to AQF Diploma level qualifications:
    • Certifications from Microsoft
    • Certifications from Cisco
  • The ICT Major Criteria will most likely be met by Australian credentials that ACS has recognized. Yet, it may not be considered closely connected to your selected occupation. As a result, you must nominate a suitable occupation.
  • ACS will only consider Skilled Employment accomplished after the date you satisfied the ACS Suitability Criteria. This implies they will not take into account prior job experience.

Important note:

ACS has particular standards for some places.

  • Bologna Agreement
    • You must submit the Diploma Supplement if you completed your qualification in a Bologna Agreement signatory country.
  • China (PRC)
    • If your certification was completed in China, supply the graduation diploma and certificate of an award per PRC academic degree laws.
  • Pakistan
    • The Higher Education Commission Pakistan must attest to the award certificate and academic transcript if you completed your qualification in Pakistan.
    • You must provide evidence that the employer has been registered by either the Federal Board of Revenue of Pakistan or the Securities Exchange Commission of Pakistan.
  • Philippines
    • If you obtained your certification in the Philippines, you must provide proof of completing the Professional Regulation Commission’s Licensure Examinations.

The ACS will determine if your educational qualification and/or job experience are at a professional level and closely connected to software development based on the supporting documentation you supplied.

ACS will provide you a certificate once you have completed your skills assessment, which certifies and acknowledges your talents, credentials, and work experience.

Step 2. Expression of Interest EOI

Following a good Skills Assessment, you may submit an Expression of Interest, which places you in a pool of applicants wishing to relocate to Australia as a Software programmer or engineer.

Therefore, it is critical that you provide the best possible case to be invited to apply for your official skilled visa.

Step3. Formal Application

Once you have received an invitation, you must apply to the Department of Home Affairs to move to Australia. A police check and a medical examination are required at this point.

Infographic How to Immigrate to Australia as Software Programmers and IT

Skills Assessment for Other ICT Skilled Occupations Assessed by ACS

ACS is the evaluating authority for other skilled vocations’ competence evaluations, in addition to software engineering (261313). The following are the items on the list:

263211 – ICT Quality Assurance Engineer

263212 – ICT Support Engineer

261399 – Software and Application Programmer*

135199 – ICT Managers NEC

135112 – ICT Project Manager

223211 – ICT Trainer

261314 – Software Tester

263112 – Network Administrator

135111 – Chief Information Officer*

261111 – ICT Business Analysts*

262113 – Systems Administrator

263299 – ICT Support and Test Engineer NEC

263213 – ICT Systems Test Engineer

313113 – Web Administrator

262111 – Database Administrator

263113 – Network Analyst

261112 – Systems Analysts*

261312 – Developer Programmer*

261211 – Multimedia Specialist*

261212 – Web Developer

261311 – Analyst Programmer*

262112 – ICT Security Specialist*

263111 – Computer Network and Systems Engineer*

Note: The vocations marked with an *, such as software programmer or engineer, are on the Medium and Long-Term Strategic Skills List (MLTSSL).

Visa Options to Immigrate to Australia as a Software Programmer and IT

The following visas are available to software programmers seeking to immigrate to Australia:

  • Skilled Independent Visa (189)
  • Skilled Nominated Visa (190)
  • Skilled Regional (Provisional) Visa (491)
  • Temporary Skill Shortage – Medium Term Stream (482)
  • Employer Nomination Scheme Visa (186)
  • Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional (Provisional) Visa (494)
  • Training Visa (407)
  • Temporary Graduate (485)

The most realistic options for software programmers are subclass 190 and subclass 491. So here, we want to look closely at subclasses 190, 491, 494, 482, and training visas. 

Subclass 190 visa & Subclass 491 visa 

If you want to obtain a US visa subclasses 190 and 491, you must receive a nomination from the state government or territory where you intend to reside and work. Each state and territory has its own standards that must be satisfied to be nominated.

While the 190 visa is a permanent visa, the subclass 491 visa allows you to live and work in rural Australia for five years with a road to permanent residency via the subclass 191 visa.

Another distinction between the 190 and 491 visas is that you may only apply for visa subclass 491 if you live and work in rural Australia, but this is not required for the 190 visas.

Immigration points

Must get at least 65 points or more if the state or territory mandates it.

English proficiency

Must have Proficient English, for example, IELTS 6.0 or equivalent, or higher if required by the state or territory.

Age

You must be under 45 years old.

Invitation

Must submit an EOI and be invited by the state or territory before applying for a visa.

Skills assessment

A good skills evaluation is required. Each vocation has its evaluating authority.

Health and Character

Health and character standards must be met.

Training Visa (407)

The 407 visa is a short-term visa that allows persons to travel to Australia for occupational training or professional development. This visa is normally valid for two years in Australia. Please keep in mind that this visa is subject to condition 8102, which prohibits work other than the training mentioned in the visa application. You must also maintain health insurance while in Australia. To be qualified for visa 407, you must satisfy the following requirements:

GTE

You must demonstrate that you are actually staying in Australia for training and will depart after the course is completed.

English proficiency

Functional English, for example, IELTS overall band score of 4.5 with no band score less than 4, or equivalent, is required.

Age

You must be at least 18 years old.

Sponsorship

You must find a temporary activities sponsor who has been approved – A commonwealth agency or an employer.

Health insurance

Must have current private health insurance.

Health and Character

Health and character standards must be met.

Subclass 494 visa

If you have found a local employer who is prepared to sponsor you, you can start your application for subclass 494. You must have at least three years of work experience in your specified occupation and a related skills evaluation to qualify for this visa. In addition, a necessary condition with this visa is that you work for the same employer who is prepared to sponsor you. The good news is that the 191 visa provides a road to permanent residency.

Experience

A minimum of three years of full-time work experience in the specified occupation.

English proficiency

A minimum of Proficient English, for example, IELTS 6.0 or equivalent, is required.

Age

Unless excluded, you must be under 45 years old.

Sponsorship

A local Australian employer must sponsor you.

Skills assessment

A favorable skills evaluation is required.

Location

Must live and work in Australia.

Subclass 482 visa

The Subclass 482 visa is a Temporary Skill Shortage visa that requires an Australian company to sponsor you. This visa allows you to remain in Australia and work for up to four years. If your company is prepared to sponsor you, you can file for as many 482 visas as you desire.

Experience

A minimum of two years of experience in the specified occupation.

English proficiency

Must have a total IELTS score of at least 5.0 with no bands lower than 5.0.

Age

This visa has no minimum age restriction.

Sponsorship

An Australian employer must be ready to sponsor you.

Skills assessment

Unless otherwise specified in this list, this is often not necessary.

Health and Character

Health and character standards must be met.

What Australian States Sponsor Software Programmers and IT?

There have been 190 state nominations for software programmers relocating to Australia. The Australian states and territories below are now supporting the 190 Visa category for software programmers moving to Australia.

VIC Victoria

SA South Australia

TAS Tasmania

NSW New South Wales

WA Western Australia

NT Northern Territory

How Much is an Immigrant Software Programmer’s Salary in Australia?

The job description for a Software Engineer will differ substantially based on the business producing it. Your income may increase as your career grows to match the greater skills and experience you earn. An entry-level software Programmer will be a self-starter with core responsibilities centered on day-to-day operations. Your degree of responsibility and income will rise in tandem with your seniority.

Entry-level software programmer salary

Entry-level software programmers understand the technology they work with and have strong programming abilities. As a result, they can communicate successfully within a team, generate clean code that is easy to read, and comprehend basic design principles.

Their daily tasks will involve creating new products, troubleshooting old ones, assisting customers or end users, and organizing their own time. A software programmer generally makes between $80,000 and $90,000.

Mid-level software programmer salary

Mid-level software programmers will be given additional responsibilities and will be important members of a larger team. They will make technical judgments and understand the appropriate technology to address complicated challenges. They will also be responsible for code reviews, project management, and stakeholder interaction.

You should be familiar with more complex design patterns and technology at this point in your career. Among your tasks will be:

  • Writing high-quality, scalable, and maintainable code
  • Debugging complex issues across a product’s or system’s whole stack
  • Creating long-term solutions through continuous integration

Organizations wanting to automate procedures and boost their capabilities would highly appreciate your talents. As a result, a mid-level software programmer may make between $90,000 and $120,000 per year.

Senior software programmer salary

As a senior-level software programmer, you will have more ownership and accountability. You will typically work with the least amount of supervision and can aim to become a team leader. As a senior, you might accomplish the following things:

  • Being in charge of the whole software design
  • Supervising other software programmers like junior ones
  • Providing technical leadership and/or ownership of essential product features or components

Your duties may include managing projects, finances, timelines, and other stakeholders. At this level, your remuneration will be determined by your seniority, the number of people you supervise, the size of your organization, and the industry. For example, senior Software Engineers often make between $110,000 and $150,000 per year.

How Much is the Cost of Migrating to Australia as Software Programmers and IT?

You should budget around $300 AUD for the English exam. A skills evaluation would cost roughly $500 or $550 in Australia. An expression of interest is free of charge.

When you apply for a visa, you must pay the following fees to the Department of Immigration: 

The primary applicant: A$3600 

The secondary applicant or spouse: A$1800   

A child: A$900 

If the visa is approved or denied, this cost is non-refundable. Every July, the Department raises this cost. In addition, the Department levies a credit card premium (0.98% for VISA or Mastercard) for visa application payments.

Unless the Department invites you to apply, you will not be required to pay the visa application fees. Given the high cost of visa application fees and the intricacy of the visa procedure, I urge you to seek professional assistance from a competent, trusted, licensed migration agent. Please regard the money you spend on Australian public relations as an investment in your future rather than a cost.

What are the English Requirements to Migrate to Australia as a Software Programmer?

Another significant requirement is to take an English exam. The minimal English qualification for general skilled migration is “Competent.” You must produce evidence that you have received satisfactory scores on one of the following tests in the three years before being asked to apply for the visa:

  • IELTS test (Academic or General): At least 6 in each of the four components.
  • TOEFL iBT: At least twelve for listening, thirteen for reading, twenty-one for writing, and eighteen for speaking.
  • PTE Academic test: A minimum of 50 in each of the four components.
  • OET test: A minimum of B in each of the four components
  • At least 169 in each of the four phases of the Cambridge C1 Advanced test.

If you have a valid passport from one of the countries below, you will be considered adequate English and will not be required to take an English proficiency test. The UK, the USA, Canada, New Zealand, and Ireland are involved.

The minimal requirement for applying for general skilled visas is fluency in English. Higher grades will get you more points when you submit your Expression of Interest or EOI. You will gain 10 points if you are competent. You will earn 20 points if you are at a higher level.

Please see the definitions of the 186 ENS visa, 482 TSS visa, and 494 SESR visa directly for work visas.

Job Search Platforms in Australia

Are you searching for a career as a software developer in Australia? Here are some prominent job search platforms that may assist you in finding work.

Stackoverflow

Jobactive

LiveHire

Indeed

Glassdoor

Seek

Linkedin

Conclusion 

The Australian government has added the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) sector of software programmers to the Priority Migration Skilled Occupation List (PMSOL). This suggests that the Australian government sees software programming as crucial in helping Australia recover from COVID-19. As a result, the processing of the nomination and visa application for programmers will be prioritized. So, if you are a software programmer seeking prospects to relocate to Australia, the time is now.

If you have any experience regarding immigrating to Australia as a software programmer and IT, please share it with us in the comment section.

FAQ

Do you need a job to get a Permanent Residency in Australia as a software programmer?

No, you do not require to be employed in Australia to apply. 

Can your family accompany you on a Skilled Visa?

Yes, with the added benefit that your partner may not even need to undergo a skills assessment for whatever career they have.

Is it necessary to have a job to immigrate to Australia as a software programmer?

Normally, no. The 189 visa class does not need a documented work offer, although the 190 subclass requires one in some states and territories.

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