Tech Nation is looking for applicants who are innovative entrepreneurs with both ‘exceptional talent’ & ‘exceptional promise’ in technology. It is designated by the Home Office in order to help you receive an endorsement needed for your application for the Tier 1 Exceptional Talent Visa. You should definitely look into this endorsement if you have the desire to work in the digital technology sector in the UK. Check out Darpan’s story in my course about how he successfully applied.
In terms of the ‘Key’ criteria, you must fulfil one key criterion. Here, you must either:
- 1. Prove that you have a history of innovation within the digital technology sector. This could involve, for example, being a founder of a company or working in a new digital field or concept (this must be proven with a patent application). Or,
- 2. Prove that you have worked above and beyond your usual duty in order to contribute towards the advancement of the sector. (You should provide evidence of this).
In terms of the ‘Qualifying’ criteria, you must fulfil at least two criteria. Check out how Darpan showed he satisfied the criteria. Here, you must:
- 1. Have a record of achieving significant technical, commercial progress in the digital technology sector, as a founder or employee.
- 2. Be recognised as a potential leader with talent in the digital technology sector.
- 3. Be continuously educating yourself on mastering new digital skills throughout your career.
- 4. Prove that you have the technical ability of an exceptional level, in the form of producing academic contributions such as published research or being endorsed by a research supervisor/expert.
This will depend on your amount of experience within the digital technology field. As an applicant with 5 years or less experience, the ‘Exceptional Promise’ route is your best option. This is because you will most likely not have had a track record in innovation, unlike candidates for the ‘Exceptional Talent’ route. Nonetheless, you will need to still be able to prove that you have the potential to be a leader in this sector as demonstrated by your previous achievements. Ideally, those of you with more than 5 years of experience will apply for the ‘Exceptional Talent’ route rather than the ‘Exceptional Promise’ route.
First of all, it is important to keep in mind that your application truly does depend on your circumstances. However, the easiest way for your application to fail is by choosing the wrong criteria/ route. In terms of criteria, the best combination for either route is to fulfil ‘key’ criterion number 1 and ‘qualifying’ criteria numbers 2 & 3.
A common mistake includes choosing to fulfil ‘key’ criterion number 2. As it is difficult to prove that you have gone beyond what is asked of you in your regular employment and also proving that the work you did do, really did contribute towards the advancement of the entire sector. In order to fulfil such a criterion would mean you were ideally an exceptional PhD candidate. Another common mistake is to try to pursue ‘Qualifying’ criteria number 4, again, as the ideal applicant, you would need to be an exceptional PhD candidate.
Please note that you do not need to rule out these criteria completely but understand that the are typically harder to prove and could delay your application process if you fail to comply with them.
You can access my course now, showing how successful applicants for this visa got through the process.