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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I started an online store about 13 years ago and I've been working on it exclusively ever since. I have handled all technical duties from the beginning and continue to do so today. I submitted a skills assessment to the ACS including the RPL and 2 project reports along with a business document from the government for each year I've been in business which references my name as the owner of the business. Today I was emailed the following:

"Please provide sufficient number of clients’ references as evidence of continuous employment during the period claimed, adequately describing the professional nature of the duties performed."

I could submit statements from my suppliers but all they know is that my company buys stuff from them. They can't describe my technical expertise. Unfortunately no one can. I was hoping that the existence of the business, my proof of ownership, and my RPL and project reports would be sufficient but it seems that they are not.

My wife and I really want to move to Australia, so what's next? Do we have any options besides these?

1. Submit statements from suppliers.
2. Appeal the decision.
3. Apply for a business skills visa and start a business in Australia.
4. Apply for an investment visa in Australia.

I don't expect #1 will work.

With #2, I'm hoping to get a different assessor who might better appreciate all that is involved with building an online business.

I've read that #3 is very difficult to get.

For #4, I need to save a lot more before I can afford to invest $1.5M in Australia.

Are these all of my options? Am I forgetting anything?
 

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I started an online store about 13 years ago and I've been working on it exclusively ever since. I have handled all technical duties from the beginning and continue to do so today. I submitted a skills assessment to the ACS including the RPL and 2 project reports along with a business document from the government for each year I've been in business which references my name as the owner of the business. Today I was emailed the following:

"Please provide sufficient number of clients’ references as evidence of continuous employment during the period claimed, adequately describing the professional nature of the duties performed."

I could submit statements from my suppliers but all they know is that my company buys stuff from them. They can't describe my technical expertise. Unfortunately no one can. I was hoping that the existence of the business, my proof of ownership, and my RPL and project reports would be sufficient but it seems that they are not.

My wife and I really want to move to Australia, so what's next? Do we have any options besides these?

1. Submit statements from suppliers.
2. Appeal the decision.
3. Apply for a business skills visa and start a business in Australia.
4. Apply for an investment visa in Australia.

I don't expect #1 will work.

With #2, I'm hoping to get a different assessor who might better appreciate all that is involved with building an online business.

I've read that #3 is very difficult to get.

For #4, I need to save a lot more before I can afford to invest $1.5M in Australia.

Are these all of my options? Am I forgetting anything?

I beleive you dont need to think of appealing as your case is not rejected, just they have asked for the additional documents. ACS asking for additional statements/documents are their common routine, dont worry on that.

I understand that your suppliers maynot be able to comment/write up on your technical expertise, but you can help them. Draft the letter by yourself and get it signed by your suppliers, if your suppliers need proof for what you have drafted, show them. I beleive in your 13 years of service defenetely you should have atleast few suppliers who may be willing to do this for you.

Dont give up, I was also asked for additional documents and I've provided them and got the ACS approval. You will get it for sure. All the best.
 
G

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1. Submit statements from suppliers.

Probably wont work they need to know that you are doing all this work and fro what you have provided them you could just be the money guy and someone else is doing all the tech work. Where did you learn your skills? Have you ever worked for someone else?

2. Appeal the decision.

Go for it but the above still stands!

3. Apply for a business skills visa and start a business in Australia.

Very difficult you would def need an agent and costly but you dont actually employ anyone do you? Why would you employ anyone in Australia?

4. Apply for an investment visa in Australia.

Get saving, good way if you can afford it!


5. Find an employer sponsor, sell you skills and be prepared to work for them instead of yourself.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I beleive you dont need to think of appealing as your case is not rejected, just they have asked for the additional documents. ACS asking for additional statements/documents are their common routine, dont worry on that.

I understand that your suppliers maynot be able to comment/write up on your technical expertise, but you can help them. Draft the letter by yourself and get it signed by your suppliers, if your suppliers need proof for what you have drafted, show them. I beleive in your 13 years of service defenetely you should have atleast few suppliers who may be willing to do this for you.

Dont give up, I was also asked for additional documents and I've provided them and got the ACS approval. You will get it for sure. All the best.
Thank you, you warmed my heart.

Where did you learn your skills? Have you ever worked for someone else?
I am 100% self-taught based on internet research. Haven't worked for anyone since high school 13 years ago.

Very difficult you would def need an agent and costly but you dont actually employ anyone do you? Why would you employ anyone in Australia?
I employ 3 people. If I were to start a business in Australia, I would definitely employ people there. However, I didn't read any mention of employing people for the business skills visa the last time I looked. I had read that previously though.

Apply for an investment visa in Australia.
Get saving, good way if you can afford it!
The points system might kill me here. Not sure. If I turn 34 I lose 5 points and then I'd only total 60 without SS.

Find an employer sponsor, sell you skills and be prepared to work for them instead of yourself.
This I can not do. I would rather stay in the US I think.
 

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auzee_bujji said:
I beleive you dont need to think of appealing as your case is not rejected, just they have asked for the additional documents. ACS asking for additional statements/documents are their common routine, dont worry on that.

I understand that your suppliers maynot be able to comment/write up on your technical expertise, but you can help them. Draft the letter by yourself and get it signed by your suppliers, if your suppliers need proof for what you have drafted, show them. I beleive in your 13 years of service defenetely you should have atleast few suppliers who may be willing to do this for you.

Dont give up, I was also asked for additional documents and I've provided them and got the ACS approval. You will get it for sure. All the best.
I agree with auzee_bujji - ACS came back to me 3 times for more information (e.g. the verification of employment - got the official letter from my HR dept, but it didn't include responsibilities info, just my terms of service - so ACS asked for a letter from my boss on company letterhead - I wrote the letter for him, and he signed it...). If you have maybe 3 suppliers that you have a good relationship with, write up a letter (outlining your responsibilities - be sure to use key words that are listed in the decription of the occupation, and even do a search on SEEK for jobs in that occupation and check out the types of skills that employers are requesting, and highlight the ones you have in the letter). Then ask the suppliers to sign it. NOTE: I originally scanned the signed letter and sent it in. A few days later they asked me to send the originals of everything I had already submitted.

e.g.
Dear Sir/Madam,

I have been a client of [your name] for [x] years [actually would be good to specify exact month and year range - e.g. from March 2004 through March 2012 (current)]. During that time frame, I have regularly transacted our business using [your web application's name] that was designed, developed, and deployed by [your name]. In his capacity as an e-commerce application developer, he regularly performs these duties:
[bullet them out]

Yours sincerely,

[name of supplier]

Wow - these IELTS tests actually ARE useful! :)

Sent from my iPad using ExpatForum
 

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you scared me with that title! that's not terrible news, they request for documents all the time.

Who are your clients? Have any of your friends done business with you? Do you have any regular clients? (Rhetorical questions)

I'd follow auzee_bujji's advice and get the references not only from suppliers but from clients as well. (I don't think suppliers by themselves would do, but if you can find a few clients of yours then your problems may be solved)
 

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I started an online store about 13 years ago and I've been working on it exclusively ever since. I have handled all technical duties from the beginning and continue to do so today. I submitted a skills assessment to the ACS including the RPL and 2 project reports along with a business document from the government for each year I've been in business which references my name as the owner of the business. Today I was emailed the following:

"Please provide sufficient number of clients’ references as evidence of continuous employment during the period claimed, adequately describing the professional nature of the duties performed."

I could submit statements from my suppliers but all they know is that my company buys stuff from them. They can't describe my technical expertise. Unfortunately no one can. I was hoping that the existence of the business, my proof of ownership, and my RPL and project reports would be sufficient but it seems that they are not.

My wife and I really want to move to Australia, so what's next? Do we have any options besides these?

1. Submit statements from suppliers.
2. Appeal the decision.
3. Apply for a business skills visa and start a business in Australia.
4. Apply for an investment visa in Australia.

I don't expect #1 will work.

With #2, I'm hoping to get a different assessor who might better appreciate all that is involved with building an online business.

I've read that #3 is very difficult to get.

For #4, I need to save a lot more before I can afford to invest $1.5M in Australia.

Are these all of my options? Am I forgetting anything?
Hi there

I know nothing about IT myself so I cannot help with the technical side of your problem. But I know an man who can, as they say:-

Ptlabs Consulting

Peter Chiam trades as ptlabs. I know Peter well and he tells me that he has never failed to succeed in getting an RPL assessment out of the ACS if that is the right way to go about getting the ACS assessment for someone.

So in your shoes, I'd certainly talk to Peter and it might be that you should instruct him to give you a hand.

Cheers

Gill
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thank you everyone for your help with this. I'm working on the client reference letters. Will the ACS accept a copy of the letter which was faxed to me?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
More bad news.

I understand that your suppliers maynot be able to comment/write up on your technical expertise, but you can help them. Draft the letter by yourself and get it signed by your suppliers, if your suppliers need proof for what you have drafted, show them. I beleive in your 13 years of service defenetely you should have atleast few suppliers who may be willing to do this for you.
I did exactly that with 5 suppliers of mine and I just received this response from ACS:

In reference to your Skills Assessment, please be advised that we are unable to complete your application until further documentation is received.

The information provided by you is inadequate. You need to provide evidence in the form of details of your activities and dates carried out (from-to, in the form of mm/yy) from your clients to support your experience as a CIO (ANZSCO code 135111). For further guidance please refer to Section 5.1 of “Skills Assessment Guidelines for Applicants on ACS webpage (http://www.acs.org.au/public/ska/docs/Skills Assessment Guidelines for Applicants - V11.pdf).
I've been the sole owner of my online business since its inception 13 years ago. I currently employ 3 people for shipping, receiving, and customer service, but I've always handled all Chief Information Officer duties which is the occupation I nominated. I spent about 10 consecutive 12-hour days working on my RPL and project reports to make sure I clearly demonstrated clear comprehension of pertinent concepts and extensive experience in their application. It doesn't seem to have mattered. They keep hammering on this "clients" requirement. I don't work for anyone so I don't have conventional clients. I have suppliers, employees, customers, and 13 years experience as a CIO in my own company.

I'm not sure what else to do. Is this the end of the line for me?
 

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More bad news.



I did exactly that with 5 suppliers of mine and I just received this response from ACS:



I've been the sole owner of my online business since its inception 13 years ago. I currently employ 3 people for shipping, receiving, and customer service, but I've always handled all Chief Information Officer duties which is the occupation I nominated. I spent about 10 consecutive 12-hour days working on my RPL and project reports to make sure I clearly demonstrated clear comprehension of pertinent concepts and extensive experience in their application. It doesn't seem to have mattered. They keep hammering on this "clients" requirement. I don't work for anyone so I don't have conventional clients. I have suppliers, employees, customers, and 13 years experience as a CIO in my own company.

I'm not sure what else to do. Is this the end of the line for me?

Hi Expatrocks,

Never say never.
I think when they are asking for customer requirements, they mean the contract or tender document which was offered to you to commence the project.
I'm assuming the contract would list the deliverables and the objectives ( programming timelines and stuff like that), and it would also have the client's signature and your signature. I think with regulating bodies, they would want evidence on this. If you have these documents lying somewhere, it would be useful. And correspond them to your project reports. If you have the signed copies of your project reports, they would help a great deal.

Hope this helps.
 

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Do you guys think a statutory letter saying that you are the owner of this business and you know this and that is sufficient?... statutory letter is a big deal as it shouldn't be faked. Not sure, just throwing this out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Do you guys think a statutory letter saying that you are the owner of this business and you know this and that is sufficient?
The ACS requires a statutory declaration with every RPL application. I submitted one with notarization as well as notarized copies of government documents proving my ownership of the business for each of the last 13 years.

In the eyes of the ACS, it seems a CIO isn't allowed to own the business in which he works. If I didn't own the business, I could have submitted a letter from the company's owner and they surely would have accepted that.
 
G

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Its not just ACS, most of the skills assessment bodies are like that. Mine, AASW, are a money making law to themselves! They are all out to protect Australian qualifications and its your job to prove beyond reasonable doubt that what you have or know is equal to or above that!
But you are right, it probably wouldve been a different story if you were an employee rather than self employed. But also they are not that keen on people who self taught. They want formal education and appreniceships!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
But also they are not that keen on people who self taught. They want formal education and appreniceships!
If that's the case, why not state it in the application documentation? In fact the RPL is specifically stated to be for people without academic qualifications. I can't help but feel misled.
 
G

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If that's the case, why not state it in the application documentation? In fact the RPL is specifically stated to be for people without academic qualifications. I can't help but feel misled.
You're not being misled, they're not keen but they except it IF you can prove beyond reasonable doubt that you know the stuff you claim you do and that must include evidence from 3rd parties.

Is there no one you can ask for references?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
Wow.

I sent them signed reference letters from two other companies I've been the CIO of for the last 10 years and now I've been officially denied. I feel completely deceived, mislead, and very nearly scammed by the ACS. They outline is a specific path for people without a college degree and people who are self-employed. I followed their instructions perfectly and spent a massive amount of time and effort on my application and project reports.

After my original submission, they requested more documentation from clients so I sent them signed letters from many of my suppliers. They requested more so I sent them signed letters from two other companies I've been the CIO of for the past 10 years. Now I've been denied with only this explanation:

Position: Owner - Not Assessable due to Insufficient Documentation

What is that supposed to mean? I provided all requested documentation, even overnighting two separate sets of documentation beyond my initial submission.
 
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