With increasing protectionism and volatility in the immigration process, companies are now becoming warier in the work pass and visa application process for their non-local workforce.

While the latest National Day rally speech from PM Lee Hsien Loong has already put in the looming dreaded changes in the Employment Pass (EP) salary criteria, it has also become increasingly critical for companies to have the right talent to remain competitive in a post-pandemic world.

With that being said, if you are an employer planning to apply for a new EP or renew an existing one, here’s what you need to know:

5-Point checklist for the application process

1) Turnover

If you are applying for a new EP, the Ministry of Manpower (MOM) requires you to update your company’s work pass portal with your latest turnover information before you proceed with the application.

If you want to renew your EP, your application may also face the risk of being rejected if your turnover information is not updated or incomplete. This is because MOM wants to know how well your company is doing financially to sustain your employees’ salaries and any overhead. In that regard, audited turnover information is well regarded by the authorities and therefore leaves less room for the authorities to question your financial position.

2) Verification of education certifications

Educational certificates are some of the documents needed for an EP. Employers are responsible for ensuring that their employees’ qualifications are genuine and were awarded by accredited institutions. And educational certificates should be verified by global verification agencies, not from a notary public. This is especially so where the education certification is dated, from China and/or is not found in MOM’s list of educational institutions. Check out more here.

3) Salary

A stagnant salary can pose many implications in the renewal process if the increment does not justify the employee’s working period. Likewise, a stark jump in salary from the last drawn can raise questions as well. Therefore, it is always paramount to have sufficient justifications as to why you are paying the applicant a particular sum of salary.

4) Hiring practices

Even if you are not mandated by the job posting requirements, you need to put in place hiring practices that meet the guidelines of MOM. In that light, it is always recommended for the company to make efforts to hire locally first and keep proof of the efforts and any dialogue surrounding it to justify why you have ultimately opted to hire a non-local.

5) Innovation and change

Companies that hire individuals who can bring innovation and change to the company and can transfer a wealth of knowledge and skills to local staff are highly regarded by the authorities. As such, honing in on the skills and experience of your application that can result in innovation and change in the company is more likely to result in a positive outcome as compared to focusing on general skills and qualifications to fit the job requirements.

Of course, if all of these sound very daunting to you, we are here to give you the professional support that you need to get you the results you want while eliminating all the stress, time, and resources.

Here’s what makes Transform Borders a different and effective solution for you

  • We strategise before we apply. If we find that the solution you are seeking is not the right fit for you, we will provide you with alternatives.
  • Our legal eye enables us to present a consistent, compelling, and convincing case to you through our document recommendations and letters.
  • We include assistance with job posting and vetting following MOM’s requirements in our costs.
  • Having overturned many unsuccessful outcomes to successful cases, we know the power of a strong appeal and include it in our costing.
  • We take care of every detail right up to inconsistencies supporting documentation such as employment contracts and service agreements.

So, are you planning to hire a non-local in your company? If you are, do not hesitate to get in touch with us! For more information, send in your immigration-related questions to us.