Working in the UK – for Overseas Applicants

Looking for a Job in the UK? CV Made Better regularly writes CVs / Resumes and LinkedIn Profiles for clients from the US, Middle East, Asia and Europe helping them secure jobs in the UK. We also assist Non-UK National living in UK take the next step on their career path. 

When you’re applying for an international job, you’ll need to know the expected CV / resume format and content required, which can vary vastly, depending on the nation you’re targeting. Something written for a job in the UK will be need to different than that written for the US or Middle East.

Clients we helped reported little or no response to their CV / Resume or LinkedIn Profile prior to obtaining our assistance. On reviewing the CV or resume we often found that the document was not presented correctly for the UK market, contained bad English grammar, spelling mistakes and lacked detail regarding key experience or skills the individual had to offer.

Despite the ongoing Brexit situation, the UK employment market attracts large amounts of non-UK nationals / applying for jobs. To work in the UK, it is essential you can communicate effectively verbally and in written form. Your CV / Resume or LinkedIn Profile is the best opportunity to demonstrate that. Should it be badly written or designed your chances of selection for an interview will be greatly reduced or minimal.

CV Made Better will work with you to create a CV / Resume or LinkedIn Profile that is set up for the country you are applying for, correctly worded using local phrases and terminology, well presented and containing detailed information concerning work experience and skills you have to offer.

Useful Information before applying for jobs in the UK

At present unless an EU national passport holder in order to work within the UK you need to hold a valid work permit or visa. You can obtain a work permit from your local British Embassy/High Commission. There are several different options to consider when applying for a UK visa the main ones are detailed below.

Before starting to look for a job in the UK, make sure that you are legally entitled to work here. It is also worth checking whether your visa restricts the number of hours per week you are entitled to work. Do not work illegally in the UK. If you are caught you risk being deported and may find it difficult to travel abroad or be unable to obtain a future visa for the UK.

For the most up to date information on obtaining a UK visa take a look at the UK Border Agency website

Tier 1 Visa

The Tier 1 General Visa replaces the previous Highly Skilled Migrant Programme (HSMP). This visa gives the holder the right to work without a employer needing to sponsor the work permit. Giving the Tier 1 Visa holder freedom of movement in the job market, including the right to establish a business or work on a freelance basis.

The Tier 1 Visa has 4 sub-categories

  • Tier 1 HSMP Highly Skilled Visa – For highly skilled individuals without a job offer who can score sufficient points based on age, earning power, education and UK experience. This also gives the right to work without employer sponsorship for an initial period of 3 years.
  • Tier 1 Post Study Work Visa – This allows those who have been in the UK on Student Visa status the right to work in the UK for an initial period of 2 years should they achieve a certain level of educational qualification.
  • Tier 1 Investors Visa – This visa allows those investing significant funds in the UK to live and work in the country.
  • Tier 1 Entrepreneurs Visa – This Tier 1 Visa sub-category is for those setting up or taking over a business in the UK and who are actively involved in its running. All of the above Tier 1 UK Visa sub-categories require the applicant to achieve at least 75 points and, apart from the Investors sub-category, all applicants will also need to meet the Maintenance and English Language criteria. If you continue to live in the UK continuously for five years with Home Office permission, you can apply after four years and eleven months for Indefinite Leave to Remain. After a period of five years and eleven months, you can then apply for naturalisation.

Tier 2 Sponsored Skilled Visa

The Tier 2 (general) sponsored skilled visa is for non EU Nationals coming to the United Kingdom to take a job that cannot be filled by a settled worker (e.g UK / EU citizen). This category also covers applicants coming to the UK to fill shortage occupations that include engineering, construction, nursing, medical and teaching the full list can be found on the UK Home Office Website my following this link.

Unless you are in a shortage occupation your employer must complete a ‘resident labour market’ test to prove that a resident worker cannot fill the job. Be aware that for this Visa you are only permitted to work for the employer that sponsors you and if you leave the job for which you are sponsored then you would have to leave the UK or get another employer to apply for another sponsorship certificate for you to remain.

Spouse Visa

If your husband / wife, civil partner or unmarried partner is a British Citizen, or has UK entry clearance in the form of an Ancestry Visa, Tier 1 visa or Tier 2 visa then you may also be eligible to apply for a Spouse Visa. To be eligible for entry to the UK you will need to provide supporting documents such as a marriage certificate, or if unmarried.

Dependant Visa

This UK visa for immigration of dependants allows an applicant to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK (ILR), often referred to as permanent residency after a qualifying period. The application is based upon a candidate’s dependency on a person who is at present settled as a permanent UK resident or a UK citizen, and who needs to support the visa application. One of the positive for this Visa is it has no immigration related restrictions on the type of work or business a person may undertake upon arrival.

Ancestry Visa

You are able to apply for a Ancestry Visa if your parents or grandparents were born in the United Kingdom. This visa will entitle you to work for four years.

To qualify you must show that:

  • You are a Commonwealth citizen.
  • You are aged 17 or over.
  • You have a grandparent who was born in the UK, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man.
  • You have a grandparent who was born in what is now the Republic of Ireland before 31 March 1922
  • You are able to work and intend to do so in the UK you can support and accommodate yourself and any dependants without any help from public funds.

If you arrive with a United Kingdom Ancestry visa you will have permission to stay for four years. As of the 3rd April 2006, the UK Ancestry Visa will now be granted for a period of five years. After five years you will be able to apply for permanent residence provided you continue to meet the requirements of the Rules of the United Kingdom Ancestry and you have spent a period of five years continuously in employment in the UK in this way. 

Right of abode

The “Right of Abode” means that you are entirely free from United Kingdom immigration control; you do not need to get permission from an immigration officer to enter the United Kingdom and you can live and work here without restriction. All British citizens, EU Nationals, certain Commonwealth citizens have the right of abode.