Monday, 17 June 2013

Migration Chapter 5: Submitting an EOI

Dear readers, we are back in sunny hazy Singapore and back to blogging! After breathing the wonderful clean air at Moalboal for the past week, I must say Singapore's haze (of PSI 100++, cough cough) is an unwelcome surprise... :(

An unwelcome sight.

Anyhow, over the 2 weeks since my last post on the migration series, we have received a number of positive feedback from readers who are on the same journey or considering migration. Thanks for your positive comments on our blog! I definitely intend to keep this  informative and insightful, especially for locals with thoughts to migrate to the land Down Under. :)

1. What is an EOI for and how do I submit one?

As of 1 July 2012, all prospective migrants are required to submit an online Expression of Interest (EOI). You can submit an EOI here

An EOI is basically an e-form to indicate your interest to migrate to Australia. Before you submit your EOI, you must ensure you have completed and received a positive skills assessment in your nominated occupation, as well as completed and received your IELTS results. The rest of the info required will depend on the components of the points test.

The form itself is pretty straightforward, as Skillselect will guide you through each page of the form submission and prompt you accordingly should you miss out any information. Submission of an EOI is technically free of charge, though the prerequisite IELTS and skills assessment aren't.

One important thing to note is this: An EOI is the first step to a visa application but it is NOT a visa application. The system doesn't allow you to attach supporting documents when you submit an EOI but it is extremely crucial that you enter all the details truthfully and accurately at this point, because any wrong/false information entered into an EOI can potentially cause your visa application to be rejected later on.

After you submit your EOI, the system will auto-compute the number of points that you can claim based on the information you have keyed in. Do note that you can technically submit an EOI even if you have less than the minimum 60 points required - however, if you have less than 60 points, your EOI submission will be taken as incomplete. This means that it will remain in the Skillselect system but you will not get an invitation to apply for a visa. Only after you meet the minimum cut-off will the submission status be taken as complete and you become eligible for invitation during the next available invitation round.

Your submitted EOI will remain in their system for 2 years. During this period, you can log in anytime to update your EOI status if there are changes to your circumstances, as long as you have not received an invite. (For example, if you improved in your IELTS score and can claim more points, then you can update your EOI with the new IELTS score.) Other time-based information, such as age, is auto-updated by the system and requires no further action from you. 

2. Invitation Rounds and Past Reports

After you have submitted a complete EOI, this same website will still remain your best friend! I visit this website an average of once a day! On separate tabs, the main website provides reports of past invitation rounds as well as dates of coming invitation rounds, both of which should be of interest to you.

From July 2012 to present, invitation rounds are conducted twice a month only. By the end of each month, Australian Immigration will determine the maximum number of invites to be issued the following month. Some bad news at this point - the maximum number of invites has been decreasing in 2013, which is bad news for us intending migrants as it means there are fewer and fewer invites being offered. Needless to say, the whole purpose of a points system is to allow the most qualified migrants (ie those with more points) to be invited first. If you have 70 points, you will be invited before the 60-pointers. Yep, I keep saying, migration is not easy and not for everyone

Visa SubclassAugSepOctNovDecJanFebMarAprilMayJuneTotal
Skilled - Independent (subclass 189)909001800280028002470193817451875171969318 830
Skilled – Regional Provisional (subclass 489)10100200200200197110100125111451398
Total10010002000300030002667204818452000183073820 228
Table taken from Skillselect website. 

On the midnight of the first and third Sunday of every month (please refer to the website for specific dates), the system will automatically issue invites to the completed EOIs based on:

  • the number of points calculated in the EOI; and
  • for those with the same number of points, the invites will be given on first-come-first served basis, meaning those who submitted their EOI earlier will be invited first.

The bottomline is this: Don't procrastinate in submitting your EOI if you are already sure you want to make the move to Australia! As their manpower needs are filled, the process for intending migrants can only get more and more difficult. You never know when they may decide to raise the cut-off points or change the points component eligibility criteria!

Now or Later? An important decision.

3. Occupation Ceilings

Recall in one of the earlier chapters, I mentioned the Skilled Occupation List (SOL)? In addition to the SOL, Immigration also publishes occupation ceiling reports to show the exact number of vacancies that they have for every nominated occupation. As more and more people are invited over time, the vacancies (especially for the more popular occupations) will start to decrease. The system will automatically stop issuing invites to those who offer any nominated occupation which has reached its occupation ceiling, even if the applicants have 60 points or more.

According to the reports on Skillselect, the following nominated occupations have reached its occupation ceilings and no further invites will be given to those who offer these occupations:

  • Chemical and Materials Engineers
  • ICT Business & System Analysts
  • Electronic Engineers
  • Telecommunications Engineering Professionals
  • Other Engineering Professionals
  • Software and Application Programmers

As of 3 June, the number of invites for Industrial, Production and Mechanical Engineers has also reached 75% of its occupation ceiling.

Evidently, engineering is a popular job amongst Aussie migrants.

Therefore, I reiterate the all-important message once again: Don't procrastinate! 别错失良机! Especially so if you are in the ICT and Engineering sector.

4. FAQs!!

This section is written in response to some readers, forummers and friends who have posted questions on EOI submission, even before I wrote this chapter. A repeat of my earlier disclaimer: I am not a migration agent or expert. I am merely someone considerably well-read for matters pertaining to migration to Oz via subclass 189 and am currently going through the process myself. If you require professional advice regarding your unique circumstances, please approach an actual migration agent!

Q1. I have only 60 points. Does this mean I will not get invited/have to wait very long for an invite?

Don't worry, you will very likely get invited even with 60 points. The majority of invites are actually given to 60-pointers. In fact, I have 60 points myself and got invited

Based on what I have read on forums, the longer wait for 60-pointers was only the case from late 2012 to around Feb this year. If you scrutinize the invitation results during the 20 May and 3 June rounds (like I did), you will notice that the actual number of invitations is in fact less than the maximum number they can offer. My guess is that Oz Immigration has finally cleared their backlog of invitations. If you had submitted your EOI before 20 May with 60 points or more, you definitely should have received an invite by now. Check your email!

Q2. My nominated occupation has reached its ceiling! Does this mean all hope is lost for me?

It is mentioned on Skillselect that "any (occupation) ceiling reached will be reset on 1 July 2013". God knows what can happen after 1 July after the SOL is reviewed. If you are lucky, your occupation will still be on the SOL and the number of vacancies is reset to a high number. If you are really unlucky, your occupation may disappear from the new SOL which means you are no longer eligible for Subclass 189. Your best bet would be to consult an experienced migration agent and take it from there.

Q3. I am currently 32 years old and going to reach 33 soon. Will I lose 5 points for age and when will this happen?

If you have submitted your EOI and have not received an invitation (likely because your EOI is incomplete?), then from what I understand, the system will automatically deduct the 5 points on your 33rd birthday.

Q4. You mentioned earlier that you are applying for both Subclass 189 and 190. You mean I can submit 2 EOIs?

You only need to submit ONE EOI, regardless of the number of visa subclasses you are applying for. On the EOI submission page which asks you to check the boxes for the visa subclasses, you can 'tick' more than one.

Actually, I just received the invite for 189 this morning, so I won't be following up with subclass 190 any longer. 189 gives much greater flexibility in terms of working and living in Australia compared to 190, anyway. 

What's next after EOI?

If you are successful, you will receive your invitation to apply for a visa (via email) on a late Sunday night or early Monday morning (like me! Hooray!!) and you are all set for the next Chapter on PR Lodgement!

Who can sleep in anticipation of an invite? I can't!

For the rest of the chapters, do take a look at my overview post here.

- A


  1. Hi there, I stumbled upon your blog after reading about your post regarding the haze in Singapore. Anyways, that's a story for another time :)

    Would like to check, are you doing the application for migration to Aus independently, on your own (i.e. without the services of immigration consultancy company)? Reason why I'm asking is cos I inquired with one of these companies and the fees that they are charging is quite high :(

    1. Hi Grace,

      Actually, we don't know about the agent fees, so let's exchange notes.

      How much are they charging? Don't have to name the company, of course. I bet it's all around that price anyway.

      *A* is doing it all by herself, with me to cheer her on occasionally and help with scanning some documents. No agents.


  2. Hi there,

    I've already submitted EOI on 01/07..still waiting for the response..

    According to you:
    On separate tabs, the main website provides reports of past invitation rounds as well as dates of coming invitation rounds, both of which should be of interest to you.

    Could you please direct me to this tab..thank you for your time and hard work..


    1. Hi Jun,

      You should have come to this website several times before, but you must have missed the tabs. Look again, closely.


  3. Hi,

    Can I check when was your EOI lodged? Mine was lodged on 28May with 60 pts but have not been invited. Hope it is not a system glitch as what some have suggested..:(

    1. Hi Anon,

      That is rather strange. What was your nominated occupation and which subclass did you apply for? Technically if you selected an occupation that is on the SOL and applied for 189 you should be automatically invited by the system. If you had applied for 190, then you will need an approval from the state first before you can be invited.

      I'll suggest that you:
      - check your spam mailbox
      - go through the details of your EOI submission again to ensure you have entered all the information on your completed EOI correctly

      All the best!

  4. Hi I need some help regarding my queries for EOI

    I submitted my EOI in July 2012 last year got invitation in November 2012 but then I realized my points were incomplete so I waited for 60 days for invitation to get expired and after that I suspended my EOI

    Now I have completed 60 points and want to apply again. I don't want to update my old suspended EOI because last time I didn't declared all my job experiences and i don't want any conflict of information because it seems(I assume) that every time we update EOI our old information is also save there

    Under these circumstances two things are coming in mind plzzzzzzzz guide me what should i do

    1) Withdraw old EOI and make a new one with the same email address OR
    2) Leave the old eoi suspended and make a new one with a new email address

    I have read some where that if EOI is withdrawn the person is banned for making a new EOI for few years

    1. Hi Anon,

      Apologies for the long delay in replying. We've been kind of busy diving in Sabah - and having a blast too!

      To answer you queries, I think you should be more concerned with the information you are trying to withhold from the Oz authorities.

      Either way you are trying to apply as a "new person", which doesn't seem to me to be very honest.

      Now, I am not at all judging you on this, but it's a gamble you are taking if you choose to misrepresent yourself to the DIAC.

      You mentioned that you don't want any "conflict of information", but I argue that there is none, since the EOI can always be updated later on if there are details to fill in subsequently.

      So my suggestion would be you just update the current existing EOI. As long as you can substantiate all your information entered there later on during the application process, it should be ok.

      Nevertheless, we are not migration agents or experts, so if you need more authoritative information, I would recommend you consult an agent.


  5. Hi, Your blog is indeed the biggest help I can find on the internet regarding the process of skill migration to Australia. I'm currently awaiting for the invitation (EOI submitted with 60 pts).

    Could you advise me if I should input all the work experiences I have had, since Engineers Australia recognizes ONLY the experiences after my Bachelor Degree (I have been working full-time since my polytechnic diploma, but I have my assessment with Bachelor Degree)?

    Thank you and your advise will be a lot helpful for me. :)