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Automation of the Sponsor Management System for Sponsorship Licence holders

The Home Office has implemented changes to the sponsor management system (SMS) allowing automating requests for Sponsorship Licence holders to make changes for:

  • authorising officers (AO)
  • key contacts (KC)
  • level 1 users and
  • organisation details.

The Home Office has also enabled automation of the annual allocation of Certificates of Sponsorship (COS) process for Sponsorship Licence users subject to provisos, see below. 

The automation changes introduced are a positive step for Sponsorship Licence holders, as they remove potential delays when making changes or having to make expedited requests with additional costs. The automation is part of the Home Office’s drive to digitise systems and should ease the administrative process for them and Sponsors.

Sponsorship Licence holders will need to satisfy the criteria below:

      I.        the sponsorship licence must be ‘active’

    II.        the sponsor licence holder must be ‘A’ rated

   III.        the postcode for AO’s must be the same as the main sponsor licence  holders as stated on the SMS, and for KC’s and level 1 users it must be the same as the legal representative where used.

The Home Office will continue to carry out background checks on potential users of the SMS where automation is used, and any issues will be communicated to Sponsors.

AO’s will still need to supply an online submission sheet generated by the SMS with any documents required, but these can be sent electronically.

Where a Sponsorship Licence holder cannot meet the criteria above, an online application will need to be submitted and following consideration by the Home Office on approval, they will update the change and send passwords where required.

Furthermore, Sponsorship Licence holders with an ‘A’ rating will be granted the same number of COS as in the previous year, so long as there is at least 3 months left on their annul allocation from the date of notification for the routes specified below:

Eligible routes

Skilled Worker (undefined only)
GBM- Senior or Specialist Worker
GBM- Graduate Trainee
GBM- Service Supplier
GBM- Secondment Worker
Minister of Religion
International Sportsperson
Charity Worker
Creative Worker
Government Authorised Exchange
International Agreement
Religious Worker
Scale Up

Non eligible routes
GBM- UK Expansion
GBM- Service Supplier
GBM- Secondment Worker
Seasonal Worker
Child Student

For Sponsorship Licence holders who have less than 3 months left, or the annual allocation has expired a new request will need to be made to renew the annual allocation through the SMS.

We are a firm of solicitors located in central London with decades of experience. You can contact us to discuss your Sponsorship Licence or immigration requirements by telephoning +44 207 038 3980, sending an email to or completing our online form.

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