If you are a recent graduate from a master’s degree or a language course in Ireland and now are ready to jump into the exciting world of working abroad, welcome. This article will guide you through the entire process of getting through all the legal and administrative processes of getting the Stamp 1 visa in Ireland. As the economy opens post covid, more and more employers are looking to hire, especially in technology and SaaS companies. The process of going through and getting the Stamp 1 may be overwhelming but today we shall look at some valuable tips from actual candidates and professionals. We will also be covering the things you should be doing to ensure success in your job search. All our advice is tried and tested, and we hope it will be valuable for you. We will be covering the five most important things to keep in mind when you go through this process, namely:

  • What is the Stamp 1 Visa for Ireland?
  • The Critical Skills Employment Permit
  • Researching the best Tech companies
  • The right tools for your job search
  • Helping your employer

What is the Stamp 1 Visa for Ireland?

Alright, you just finished your education and started your job search. From the world of assignments and university courses, you have entered a new world of job applications, CVs, career portals, recruiters, and interviews. This typically is a very complex process involving finding job portals, emailing contacts, sending LinkedIn invites, talking to recruiters, and going on interviews. We will discuss those in more detail but for now let’s talk about Stamp 1. There are typically two categories of students who apply for a Stamp 1 Visa.

  1. Master’s Students who have applied for or possess a Stamp 1G (Which gives them two years to find a job)
  2. Language Students who can directly apply for the Stamp 2 (Without needing a Stamp 1G)

Now, based on your educational degree you can be granted either a one-year period (for a Bachelor’s degree) or a two-year period (for a Master’s degree) to look for a job. This is called the graduate immigration permission.

Caveat: If you are eligible for the 24 Month period, you should be aware that you will only be granted permission for the first 12 months. Your period of time will be extended only when you can show sufficient proof that you actually used your initial 12 months to apply for a job including attendance at job interviews, signing up with graduate employment agencies and other concrete steps. Only then will you get a further 12 months.

Once you find suitable employment, which will be decided by the employment permit you are targeting, you can now successfully apply for a Stamp 1 visa, which is a legally binding document which will let you work in Ireland for two years. While there are eight types of employment permits in Ireland, we shall focus on the most important one i.e The Critical Skills Employment Permit.

Critical Skills Employment Permit

The critical skills employment permit is for those qualified professionals who possess skills of which there are a significant lack in Ireland. The Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment (DETE) has a Critical Skills Occupation List. The way it works is that you must have a valid job offer before you apply for the critical skills employment permit. There are two conditions under which you (or the employer) can apply for this permit.

  1. An annual salary of at least €32,000 a year in an occupation that is on the Critical Skills Occupation List. You can access the link to see which career categories and professional job titles fit into the critical skills list in more detail. To be educationally qualified for this job, you must have a degree or higher qualification.
  2. An annual salary of €64,000 a year in an occupation that is not on the list of ineligible occupations. Access the link to see the scope of the same. To be educationally qualified for this job, you must have a degree or equivalent experience.

Now, there are several criteria which your potential Irish employer must fulfil for you to apply for the Critical Skills Employment Permit.

  1. Your Irish employer must be registered with Revenue.ie, trading in Ireland and registered with the Companies Registration Office.
  2. You must be directly employer and paid for by your employer in Ireland. Job offers from Recruitment agencies and third-party hiring middlemen are not acceptable for this permit.
  3. The job offer must be for two or more years.

Application Process: There were initially two ways to apply for the Critical Skills Employment Permit. One was to send your documents offline to the  Employment Permits Section of the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment at this Address.

Employment Permits Section,
Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment,
Earlsfort Centre, Lower Hatch Street,
Dublin 2,
D02 PW01

However, due to Covid restrictions and In line with public health advice, all staff are working remotely, and they currently have no physical presence in their office. Applicants are asked not to send any applications or documents by post as they are unable to receive and process these. Please be advised that the Employment Permits Section are accepting all correspondence electronically.

You must apply online with the required documentation, using the Employment Permits Online System (EPOS). You can use the Critical Skills Employment Permit checklist to help you apply.

Fees: Either you or your employer must pay a fee of €1,000. If your application is refused, you will get 90% of your application fee back.

Well, by now you must have understood that it is quite a tedious process to apply for and get an Employment Permit in Ireland. Not just that, every time you switch jobs, you have to undergo this process which can be quite hectic and time consuming. Ireland has therefore created the Trusted Partner Initiative which makes the entire process of applying for critical skills permit from an Irish Employer for a working immigrant much more optimized.

Under the Trusted Partner Initiative, a Person who will make an offer of employment / Employers/Connected Persons and EEA contractors may apply for Trusted Partner status. When Trusted Partner status is granted a unique Trusted Partner Registration Number is assigned. Applicants granted Trusted Partner status will have access to their own suite of employment permit application forms where they must only provide their Trusted Partner Registration number in lieu of all employer details.

Researching the best Tech companies

Now, Ireland has become Europe’s technology hub of choice because it offers the perfect work-life balance, the Irish government supports tech start-ups, and it has an inspiring environment. But with so many tech companies and opportunities opening up, you as a foreign graduate might feel overwhelmed with where to apply for a job and how to go about applying to the right company. The most popular job portals are Indeed, GlassDoor and Irish Jobs. LinkedIn is also a very important platform which if you learn to leverage well will really help you in your job search. Here is a sequence of important steps when applying for a tech job via job portals.

Stamp 1G Status: Make sure you mention your Irish address, your PPSN Number, your Stamp 1G Status and how long it is valid for on your CV. Preferably at the top, as this is very important information for your prospective employer to gauge your profile.

Company Research: For every company, before you even apply it is very important to filter out those companies which have a low chance of hiring you. For every company you want to target, find out as much as you can about the company online. This includes:

  • Number of employees
  • Studying the LinkedIn posts of the company page
  • Reading the LinkedIn Profiles of the company employees
  • Observing the diversity of the company employees

The last point is an important one to consider, as it could reveal the chances of you getting hired at that company.

Tailor your CV for the Job:  Always carefully read the job description and look at what the employer is hiring for. Make sure you show the most relevant work experience on your resume which matches what the employer is looking for and map it according to the skillsets they are looking for.

Prequalifying the company: Here’s a question for you. As a foreign student in Ireland, which place do you think you have a higher chance of getting hired?

  • Option A: An enterprise tech company with thousands of employees which has been around for a decade
  • Option B: A small tech start-up with 50+ employees on a huge growth spurt

The correct answer is option A, why?

  1. An enterprise tech company has been around for a while and thus has the support structure to handle onboarding and hiring new employees. It can give you more career stability and growth as it is an established brand.
  2. An enterprise tech company is much more likely to know exactly how the legal and visa process works for foreign nationals. They have HR processes in place precisely to be able to onboard foreign graduates easily and at scale so they would be much more likely to solve any visa issues you have and guide you well.

But this is not a hard and fast rule. There are always exceptions to every rule, but it is good to be aware of this. It is very important to keep yourself informed and up to date about the company and its policies, hiring practices, team structure, etc. And a great platform to do that is LinkedIn. Find the company, its LinkedIn page, its employees, etc. Here are three important points to keep in mind when pre-qualifying the company.

Diversity: Always make a point to check for the diversity within the company. As a general rule, the more diverse the company, the higher the chances of them hiring you.

Hiring Sprees: Also look into the post history of the company and check if they have been hiring a lot of people recently. Check their posts announcing their new candidates as it is common practice.

Recently Hired Candidates: This is a golden nugget of information and something very important to keep in mind. Filter through LinkedIn for people who recently got hired by that company and reach out to them personally on LinkedIn to gain an understanding of the job market. And, they are the most likely to help you as they have been through that experience themselves. Stick around to the end of this article for your free email template to send a recruiter on LinkedIn and Emails.

The Right Tools for your job Search

There are several tools and technologies which can aid you in your job search. Here is an important list of the same for each part of the job application process.

Business Emails

Okay, you have found a tech company, which you want to apply for it is critical that you research it across all social media for recent news and information. And then research the employees as well and find three employees you want to connect with. But how do you find the business email of these employees, as this is typically private information and/or is hard to find. You can use these software’s for that purpose.

Hunter.io :Hunter.io is an email hunting software that helps you find the email addresses of people at a certain company. You can register for a free account today and start accessing the email addresses of various tech companies, like Accenture for example.

Rocket Reach: Rocket reach will not only show you emails, but it will also help you find phone numbers and associated social media accounts for a particular LinkedIn profile.

Lusha: Lusha lets you get accurate B2B emails & phone numbers very quickly. The only condition is that you must enter a work email to be registered for a free trial.

Once you have that done, you can then install the Google Chrome extension of Lusha. What that will allow you to do is that once you have logged into LinkedIn, the Lusha extension will show you a dashboard that gives you the contact’s work email address, personal email address, their number and details about their company. For example:

Video Messages

Nowadays it is very important to personalize the message you send the recruiter or hiring manager. With everything moving online, its more and more essential to differentiate yourself from the competition. What you can do nowadays is video record yourself and send a link along with the email so that the recruiter can get a 360 degree of who you are. A couple software’s you can use are Vidyard and Loom.

Vidyard: Vidyard is a great platform for virtual selling. That means salespeople use this to create personalized videos for each stage of their sales cycle. For an online Security software company, they might send along their free trial along with a video recording of one of their engineers using the software. But you could use this to record yourself just briefly talking about yourself and going over your cv and send that to the potential recruiter it would make just that extra difference that gets you the job.

Loom: Loom is another great video platform to quickly record yourself. It allows you to take screen recordings as well. And its pretty intuitive.

Helping Your Employer

This is an important set of points you should keep in mind. Be aware that proactiveness is very well rewarded on the Global Economy. Especially in Ireland, you must be educating yourself on all the rules and regulations around your stamp status. Your job is to make it as easy as possible for the employer to hire you. Here the most important tips to keep in mind to make sure you can do that.

Knowledge and Research: Go to all the official links and websites need to know about the stamps online. Go through all of it and make sure you can figure out where your skills lie i.e on the critical skills or ineligible jobs list. If you find the process complex, tedious, or annoying be aware that it is a very common sentiment. Take it step by step and don’t get overwhelmed. Keep this article bookmarked so you can reference it again and again.

Legal Processes: Make sure you keep information on:

  • Your legal status
  • Your PPSN Number
  • Your visa status
  • The legal process you need the employer to take
  • The legal documents you need to provide
  • The legal documents they need to submit

Network: Make sure you reach within your LinkedIn network to see if you can find people who you can talk to to help you out in the legalities of the application process. People who have recently immigrated from your home country are great avenues of help for information about the job process.

Basically, try to make the process as easy as possible for your employer to hire you.

Bonus Content

One of the most difficult things potential candidates struggle with is actually communicating with the recruiter or hiring manager. Our word-for-word scripts will immediately help you with actionable scripts for both LinkedIn and emails. By downloading the “Stamp 1 Job Toolkit” you will get access to:

  • Online Resources for Information
  • Email Script for Informational Interviews
  • LinkedIn Scripts for Job Referrals and walkthrough
  • An actual LinkedIn Exchange that got a job referral

It can be interesting as well...

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