14/08/2007 - 22:00

ISA grows its offering

14/08/2007 - 22:00

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Skilled migration agency Immigration Solutions Australia is preparing to re-badge itself after recent merger and acquisition activity has expanded its suite of services.

ISA grows its offering

Skilled migration agency Immigration Solutions Australia is preparing to re-badge itself after recent merger and acquisition activity has expanded its suite of services.

Now known as the ISA Group, the Subiaco-based company last week added a human resources division, announcing its merger with West Perth-based WA Corporate Migration and HR Management.

This follows the acquisition of Canberra-based registered training organisation Australian Labour Market Services in December 2006, which is currently in the process of being integrated into ISA’s Perth head office.

The company also has a fully funded recruitment and training office in the Philippines, and has this week opened an office in Bunbury.

Directors Brett and Noelene Merrey, who started the company in 2003, have grown ISA from a migration agency to a provider of a broad range of training and support services for both the employees and employers, including a full induction and integration program.

Its clients include businesses across a number of industries – including mining, engineering, manufacturing and hospitality – ranging in size from small to medium enterprises to large corporate and publicly listed companies.

The addition of WA Corporate Migration and HR Management, now known as ISA HR Management, to the group brings to company a number of high-value clients in the oil and gas, mining, sub-sea and shipping areas.

Mr Merrey said the development of recruitment and migration business divisions, in addition to the strategic mergers and acquisitions, had added value to the consultancy.

“We feel we’ve got a unique offering. No-one else has got these four things under one roof,” he told WA Business News.

Mrs Merrey, a registered migration agent, said the demand for skilled migration specialists had grown in recent times as companies unsuccessfully try to bring overseas recruitment in-house through their HR departments.

Regular legislative changes and lengthy delays in the processing of applications through government departments had also driven companies to outsource their overseas recruiting, she said.

“It’s not always easy for HR managers to keep on top of things,” Mrs Merrey said.

“[Companies] can see that not doing something correctly costs them more in the long run.”

She said industry was coming to understand that the skills shortage was not a short-term problem, and companies were being forced to think creatively to attract workers in the highly competitive global market.

“There’s a worldwide shortage of skills, not just in Australia. We need to make it a friendly and pleasant exercise to get people to come here,” Mrs Merrey said.

“It’s really being driven by the bigger end of town. They’re not seeing it as a short-term solution, they see that it has to become a long-term philosophy and concept.”

Meanwhile, visa services provider Fragomen Australia Pty Ltd is increasing staff numbers at its Perth office.

The company, which processes visas for about 5,000 workers in Australia each year, has grown its Perth office from six to 10 staff in the past year, and expects to recruit another four registered migration agents in the next few months.

Fragomen Australia WA manager Isobel Adams said she expected continued growth in the business over the next few years, particularly in the area of permanent residency visas.

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