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Visa Compliance Manager

Closing date for applications: 23 February 2018

Job Description

To ensure that Study Group is fully compliant with its obligations as a UKVI Tier 4 Sponsor and work closely with colleagues across the UK business to provide guidance and expertise for both students and staff for all matters concerning the UKVI, Home Office and student visas.

Location: Brighton

Status: Permanent, Full-time 37.5 hours per week

Key Responsibilities 

Governance and Quality Control

  • Manage all Study Group UK policies (and procedures where appropriate) related to UKVI and Tier 4 compliance, including: -
  • Agent Management, vetting, performance monitoring and termination
  • Student Pre-arrival, including minimum standards for Admissions, financial document checks and pre-arrival Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) issuance
  • Student Post-arrival, including minimum standards for Induction, Alternative Collection Location (ACL), document retention, contact details tracking, attendance management and CAS issuance for onward study (as required)
  • Manage licences and ensure that all submissions, applications, reporting and advisory notices are submitted on a timely basis;
  • Oversee and manage the UKVI Sponsor Management System for the UK business;
  • Manage an internal audit schedule for all appropriate locations and functions, with a focus on ensuring UKVI Inspection readiness and adherence to noted UKVI related policies and procedures;
  • Manage a robust management information suite pertinent to UKVI compliance in order to inform Senior Management, highlighting data trends and ensuring that appropriate action plans are in place to address areas of risk, maximising the balance between compliance and business performance.

Driving Knowledge & Awareness

  • Proactively maintain a personal understanding of UKVI and immigration legislation with a view to understanding the implications for the organisation, and developing and implementing process change plans as required;
  • Develop and implement a robust training and awareness schedule for operators of UKVI systems and immigration related processes, using external training providers as required. Ensure changes are cascaded and embedded effectively across the organisation;
  • Collaborate with local leadership teams to develop a network of designated Visa Compliance Leads across the UK business, and to nurture a talent pool to develop into visa compliance related roles in the future;
  • Work closely with Sales and Admissions to provide up to date immigration advice for prospective international students, on an individual case basis as required;
  • Prepare and distribute updates on all Tier 4 related issues to members of the UK Executive Team and other internal stakeholders as required.


Developing Relationships

  • Act as the main interface with the UKVI at an operational level;
  • Act as key representative for Study Group UK with regards to Home Office guidance;
  • Provide an expert point of contact for all UK staff on the immigration requirements of Tier 4. Act as a point of escalation for Centre staff and Visa Compliance Officers on complex technical queries;
  • Close liaison with Admissions Function, Sales teams and Centre Staff to ensure that the correct pre and post arrival visa checks are carried out in line with UKVI requirements.  


  • As part of our Safeguarding procedures, applicants are asked to note that:
  • References will be followed up;
  • All gaps in CVs must be explained satisfactorily;
  • Proof of identity and (where applicable) qualifications will be required;
  • Appropriate suitability checks will be required to prior to confirmation of appointment.

Selection Criteria

Qualifications and Training


  • Good standard of literacy and numeracy. Grades A-C in English language and Maths A-level or equivalents
  • Undergraduate or professional qualification or equivalents


  • UKCISA or equivalent immigration training or Continuing Professional Development
  • Postgraduate or professional qualification or working towards this 

Experience Required


  • In-depth knowledge of the UKVI policies and procedures in relation to UK immigration in the education sector (Tier 4).
  • Experience of using the UKVI Sponsor Management System (SMS) on a regular basis.
  • Must have experience working in an advisory capacity (as opposed to purely processing).
  • Held the role of a SMS Level 1 or Key contact with UKVI
  • Developing and improving IT and administrative systems and processes
  • Working with international students in a FE/HE education environment
  • Team Management with ability to lead and motivate a team
  • Ability to work effectively and accurately under pressure


  • Able to demonstrate up to date sector training on immigration requirements
  • Experienced in working with student records databases
  • Knowledge of environmental factors effecting UK pathway and HE education and the international students.  

Knowledge and Skills


  • Ability to plan effectively, and look ahead and plan for the impact of regulatory and statutory changes which will impact the business, whilst still maintaining focus on the "here and now".
  • Be self-motivated, versatile and have the ability to work on own initiative with little supervision.
  • Strong organisational skills, with the ability to effectively prioritise, multi-task and meet tight deadlines.
  • Outstanding customer services skills.
  • Able to communicate technically complex information/requirements to a wide range of audiences in a clear and easy to understand way.
  • Strong problem solving skills – able to successfully balance the compliance/commercial requirements.
  • Able to build relationships across a wide organisation, many of which will be remote (ie: via telephone, skype or email).


  • Project and change management skills.   

Organisational Compliance

The position holder must comply with Study Group policies and applicable laws including those in relation, but not limited to: Occupational Health and Safety; Anti-Discrimination and Harassment, Anti-Bribery and Corruption and those specifically relevant to the position and authority of the job holder.

Eligibility to work and travel freely to and from the UK, i.e. valid UK or EC passport or leave to remain.



Please apply with a CV, covering letter and completed application form to Peter Skillen.

Application deadline 23 February 2018