Guidance for UK employers of non-EEA students

Information correct as of February 2021.

Graduate route

The Home Office intends to introduce a new ‘Graduate route’ to be launched in the summer of 2021. ​This proposed new route will enable international graduates to switch from a student visa to a two-year post-study visa (or three years for PhD graduates) following successful completion of their course. This non-sponsored visa will allow graduates to work, or look for work, in the UK. Full details have not yet been confirmed, but this page will be updated once the route is in place. 

Skilled Worker route

This is the route for skilled workers who have an offer for an eligible job from an approved employer sponsor. The job will also need to meet the minimum salary threshold. A graduate switching from a Student visa, or the new Graduate visa, into the Skilled Worker route can use the ‘new entrant’ minimum salary level.

A sponsor licence issued by the Home Office is required to be able to sponsor an employee under the Skilled Worker route. Applications for a sponsor licence are made online via the Home Office website. The website also has information about the process for sponsorship after the organisation has obtained a sponsor licence.

This information is to be re-visited in May or when full info is available, whichever comes first.