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Types of Workers Needed in the UK

By: Louise Smith, barrister - Updated: 15 Oct 2019 | comments*Discuss
Types Of Workers Needed In The Uk

Immigrants have always come to the UK to find work. Many foreign nationals will need a visa before they can work in the UK and, depending on the type of work to be undertaken, they may also need a job offer or sponsor before they can get a work visa. In recent years more foreign nationals have become entitled to work in the UK without a visa because they come from a country which is a member of the European Union or the European Economic Area.

A growing number of UK employers now look overseas to fill perceived gaps in the labour market. Some UK industries suffer from a lack of UK citizens qualified to work in those jobs and must, therefore, look to foreign and migrant workers in order to survive.

Workers from the European Economic Area generally have the same rights to work in the UK as UK citizens. However, there can be difficulties if an employer chooses to recruit from the rest of the world. Some foreign workers will accept lower wages than European or UK workers. Whilst it is accepted that foreign workers may be needed in some industries there can be a concern that foreign workers are sometimes recruited purely because they are cheaper than UK workers.

In addition to the need to fill gaps in the labour market many employers feel that foreign or migrant workers can make a positive contribution to the industry in which they work and also to the wider community.

Jobs Listed by the Migration Advisory Committee as Requiring Overseas Recruitment

A recent report by the Migration Advisory Committee of the Home Office set out categories of jobs which it considers should be filled from outside Europe. The report has caused some controversy and many of its conclusions have been criticised as being short-sighted or unrealistic.

The Committee drew up a list of specific jobs which it believes merit recruitment from outside Europe. Examples of jobs listed include:

  • Tier 1 Workers – construction managers; civil engineers and chemical engineers.
  • Tier 2 Workers – some categories of doctors and dentists; veterinary surgeons; maths and science school teachers; some categories of nurse; skilled senior care workers; skilled chefs; and, skilled sheep-shearers.

Construction in the UK

The construction industry has a history of recruiting from outside of the UK and, although the Migration Advisory Committee did not list this as a major shortage area, it is likely that this area of recruitment will continue. Despite the threat of recession leading to some cutbacks in construction other major projects will continue regardless of the wider economic climate. The 2012 London Olympics, for example, requires a major programme of construction to be completed on time. It is anticipated that migrant workers will be needed to ensure that works are completed on schedule.

Unskilled Jobs, Seasonal and Casual Work in the UK

Another area where migrant works have traditionally formed a significant proportion of the work force is unskilled labour and seasonal or casual work. The wages paid for this kind of work are often lower than a UK worker would consider acceptable. Every year many migrant workers come to the UK to pick fruit, to work in unskilled factory jobs or to harvest seafood. As well as low wages the working conditions for these jobs are often hard and uncomfortable - many UK citizens simply do not want to do them.

Healthcare Industry

Junior nurses and junior care home workers receive low wages relative to the stresses and difficulties of their jobs. Migrant workers may find the lower wages more acceptable as they may be higher than would be paid in their home country. In addition hospitals in both the National Health Service and the private sector have struggled to fill staff posts from UK and European candidates alone.

Service Industries

Hotels, bars, restaurants, transport and taxi companies all recruit widely from migrant workers. Not only may there be a shortage of UK or European candidates for these jobs, and for those in the categories listed above, but foreign workers are often believed to have a better attitude to work than their UK counterparts.

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What about commonwealth nationals, what kind of jobs or tiers are they eligible to do?
Ruby93 - 15-Oct-19 @ 9:38 PM
I Aminterested jobunskilled 9877018163
Sunny - 30-Sep-19 @ 4:50 AM
@Officer - Foreigners can only take up unskilled work in the UK if they are from the EU.
TJ. - 9-Jul-19 @ 5:06 PM
Am A Diploma Teacher In Secondary Education. I Want To Work In Uk With Any Kind Of Job Even Unskilled Provided You Pay Me Instantly
Officer - 4-Jul-19 @ 3:33 AM
I like to work unskilled jobs in UK. I can relocate any time. Please give me anyone job.
Shanmuga - 10-Jun-19 @ 3:47 PM
I am a young married lady 27 years of age. I would love to relocate to UK with my husband working ascaregivers ... From Zimbabwe..
Immae - 20-May-19 @ 12:34 PM
I am a have six certificates in automotive engineering with the last being Motor vehicle Technicians part 3. What are my chances of working abroad from Ghana? Thank you
Brainiac - 3-Mar-19 @ 7:57 AM
My husband is a postal worker here in the USA. We are wanting to move to Scotland but aren't sure if it is even possible because we aren't highly skilled workers. It is the 2 of us and our 3 kids. Would we be able to get a uk work visa to live and work in Scotland?
Sam - 30-Jan-19 @ 3:23 PM
@Kasape - Foreign Unskilled workers are not currently required in the UK
TJ. - 26-Jan-19 @ 10:55 PM
Interested for unskilled job in UK,I live in Uganda and am 27 years
Kasape - 25-Jan-19 @ 10:07 AM
@Nisha - Unfortunately you are unlikely to find any country that is willing to take unskilled workers as immigrants these days
TJ. - 24-Jan-19 @ 8:55 AM
Hello, My name is nisha and I am living in India.I have no professional degree. But i want to work in foreign. How do I get job in foreign? How would I apply in foreign companies who give the job with salary and immigration? There are too much fake companies and people on Internet sites who would i know about it? And recognise that?
Nisha - 24-Jan-19 @ 5:12 AM
I'm from India, age 30I'm looking for any unskilled job, I have work experience in retail and BPO as a customer service, I have a diploma in advance hairdresser. One year work experience too. I have a passport. Ready for any unskilled job available to restart mylife/career.
Paul - 11-Dec-18 @ 11:20 AM
I.m 27years old, Ethiopian I graduated public health bachelor degree 1years experience, I would like to work in the UKany types of job,if I could enjoy chemical industry Im very happy . kindly advise me ,where to start. thanks
shunni - 19-Oct-18 @ 7:28 AM
Am a Zambia citizen aged 25 and l would like to work in the UK as a house keeper , cleaner or any unskilled job .kindly advise on where to start and how. thanks !
Tasmania - 10-Jul-18 @ 12:49 PM
@Apple - New visas for unskilled workers in the UK have been suspended.
TJ. - 14-Mar-18 @ 1:40 PM
Am an Indian working & living in India, seeking an Unskilled job in the UK. I used to apply online jobs in retail management sectors... Is it possible to get a work permit in the retail sector?
Apple - 14-Mar-18 @ 11:10 AM
Am a Nigerian my cousin leaving in the uk. Is confused he want to help me come to the uk.but he dont know how to go about it.i want to know if I can get Unskilled job. In UK.
depure - 29-Jan-18 @ 11:43 PM
My boyfriend is from New Zealand and is 30. He is a roofer by trade, is there any way we can bring him over to the UK with me to work and live?
Steph_86 - 24-Oct-17 @ 12:11 AM
zippy - Your Question:
Hi,Am a Kenyan citizen aged 33and l would like to work in the UK as a stewardess or cleaner.kindly advise on where to start and how.thanks

Our Response:
You would have to see whether you would be eligible to apply for one of the visas listed here .
AboutImmigration - 19-Oct-17 @ 11:28 AM
Hi,Am a Kenyan citizen aged 33and l would like to work in the UK as a stewardess or cleaner.kindly advise on where to start and how.thanks
zippy - 18-Oct-17 @ 12:46 PM
sir ,i want to work in UK ,i have highersecondary school certificate and i have 10year experience as a supervisor please tell me can i aaply for work visa
uni - 6-Sep-17 @ 8:12 PM
timangel - Your Question:
Hi ,,, I am dating a Filipino lady,and have for some time now and I want her to come and live with me in the UK.i am a UK resident with a British passport. we intend to marry would it be easier for us to marry in the UK or in the Philippines. what is the best or simplest way for her to reside in the UK.she also wishes to work when arriving here is this possible. please advise ,many thanks.

Our Response:
You would have to fulfil all the requirements laid out in the gov.uk link here in order to be able to apply.
AboutImmigration - 27-Jun-17 @ 2:47 PM
Hi ,,, i am dating a Filipino lady,and have for some time now and i want her to come and live with me in the UK ..i am a UK resident with a British passport . we intend to marry would it be easier for us to marry in the UK or in the Philippines. . what is the best or simplest way for her to reside in the UK .she also wishes to work when arriving here is thispossible. please advise ,many thanks.
timangel - 26-Jun-17 @ 8:32 PM
I am twenty years old.I have my secondary school certificate.So can i apply with my secondary school certificate ? I'm Nigerian,i live in kano.
hysam - 19-Oct-16 @ 9:58 PM
My partner is in South Africa & we met online . She wishes to join me in Scotland to work & will apply for a work visa ! My Questions are : 1 can we get married in she is on a work visa ? 2 is she able to extend her work visa for more than a year ? 3 May she travel anywhere while she is in Scotland on a work visa ? 4 if she was to be pregnant would she still have to leave the country with our baby ? Thanking you Brett Beetge
Brett - 22-Mar-16 @ 4:13 PM
Player - Your Question:
Hey I am a British citizen that's having hard time in Somaliland because my parents took my passport away from with out notice i need help

Our Response:
I suggest you contact the British Embassy in Mogadishu which may be able to help.
AboutImmigration - 1-Feb-16 @ 10:33 AM
hey i am a British citizen that's having hard time in Somaliland because my parents took my passport away from with out notice i need help
Player - 31-Jan-16 @ 9:01 AM
I have dual citizenship australian and hungarian can my daughter apply for a working visa after me as hungary is part of the EU we have no decendants from the uk her current visa expires end of october and her employer has sponsored her already she wishes to settle in the uk eventually
PORGY - 9-Sep-14 @ 4:01 AM
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