Company ‘IL’ is a full-service IT consulting firm established 5 years ago for providing consulting and business solutions to customers in the UK and around the world. They work across a variety of sectors including Media, Banking, and Security.
Company ‘IL’ requires employees with multiple IT skills who can work in different environments and with various technologies. Finding individuals with these skills have proven to be very difficult in the current local and EEA labour markets. Therefore, Company ‘IL’ obtained a Sponsor Licence to enable them to employ the required highly skilled IT personnel, meet the demands of their clients and the growth of the company.
In mid-2017, Company ‘IL’ was visited by representatives of the UK Visas & Immigration (UKVI) to assess the suitability as a registered sponsor. Following the compliance visit, the Sponsor Licence of Company ‘IL’ was suspended mainly due to the issue of genuine vacancy. The company also failed to comply with the reporting duties. UKVI was of the view that a sponsored worker had been employed to provide ongoing services to third-party companies. Company ‘IL’ was required to make representations within 20 working days to address UKVI’s concerns.
The complication of this matter is the genuine vacancy issue, for which the UKVI applies a very subjective test. This issue is also mandatory grounds for revocation of a sponsor licence.
As a small but growing company, if Company ‘IL’ was to lose their sponsor licence, they would lose 80% of their IT workforce.
Following the instruction received from Company ‘IL’ to assist in their matter, we provided detailed advice on the information and documents required for Company ‘IL’ to prepare in order to address the genuine vacancy issue, and other issues that were raised such as reporting duties. We reviewed all these documents, prepared and submitted the representations pack on behalf of Company ‘IL’ before the deadline given by UKVI.
Within less than 3 months after submission, Company ‘IL’ was informed by UKVI that their licence had been reinstated and the compliance team was satisfied that the issues raised in the suspension letter had been addressed by Company ‘IL’. The director of Company ‘IL’ was relieved as he was at risk of losing contracts with existing clients due to the threat of losing their sponsored workers. IT expertise is essential in maintaining their client contracts. Company ‘IL’ can now focus on winning new contracts as part of their expansion plan because they are not at risk of losing their skilled foreign workforce, following the reinstatement of their Sponsor Licence with our expert knowledge.