Business Stuff

Navigating Business Visas for the UK

The UK has some great visa options for companies that need to move talent around globally. There’s a UK Global Business Mobility Visa that lets big multinationals bring employees over temporarily for things like training programs or short-term projects.

And for those looking to relocate folks more permanently, the Senior or Specialist Worker Visa provides that longer-term pathway. The UK is focused on supporting global business and facilitating the acquisition of the right talent when needed.

Facilitating Flexible Short-Term Assignments: The Global Business Mobility Visa

Introduced in 2022, the Global Business Mobility Visa simplifies the process for international employees on urgent assignments in the UK, consolidating previous business visas into a streamlined application.

The visa enables stays of up to 5 years for eligible senior multinational employees collaborating on projects with UK branches. To qualify, employees must have specialized skills like engineering, finance, law, sales, or technology. Their skills must be needed for business-critical assignments in the UK.

The Global Business Mobility Visa provides several key benefits:

  • Fast processing within 3 weeks for businesses needing to transfer talent quickly
  • Flexibility to send employees for varying assignment lengths of up to 5 years
  • Ability for employees’ family members to accompany them to the UK
  • No resident labor market test required to show no UK/EU citizens can do the role

For companies needing to complete international assignments promptly, this visa keeps UK immigration straightforward.

Senior or Specialist Worker Visa: For Longer-Term UK Relocation

If your company needs to permanently move experienced international talent to the UK, check out the Senior or Specialist Worker Visa. It’s designed for transferring senior-level employees or folks with advanced specialist skills, and lets them stay in the UK for up to 5 years. For certain in-demand occupations, it can also provide a path to full UK settlement over time. This makes it easier to get the key global expertise you require into your British offices on a long-term basis.

To be eligible, international workers must have in-demand qualifications and skills meeting required salary thresholds. Jobs like medical professionals, engineers, tech professionals, and scientists may qualify.

Key benefits of the Senior or Specialist Worker Visa include:

  • Streamlined 5-year visa processing if the initial 3 years go well
  • Ability to apply for settlement in the UK after 5 years in certain occupations
  • Visa flexibility to switch jobs or employers within the 5 years
  • Ability to bring family members once the visa holder settles in the UK

For companies needing to establish senior international talent more permanently in the UK, this visa provides a clear framework.


The UK has set up a couple different visa options to help companies bring in talent from their global teams. There’s one for short-term assignments and another for long-term relocation. It takes some upfront work to make sure you’ve checked all the boxes for these business visas. But for companies willing to dot the i’s and cross the t’s, it’s definitely possible to get your international people where they need to be. The pathways exist – you just have to come prepared and follow the process.

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