White Rose Visas 10 Year Anniversary
In 2019 White Rose Visas celebrated its 10 year anniversary! The company was founded by Kim & Mark Day in April 2009 with the aim of providing knowledgeable, professional and communicative immigration advice to individuals and companies across all aspects of UK immigration law. The following interview was conducted with founder Kim Day to reflect on the first 10 years of White Rose Visas, with a view to what the next 10 years will bring.
Why did you originally decide to establish White Rose Visas and work within the immigration sector in the UK?
I had been working for some time at Sheffield University Student’s Union as an International Adviser and had become passionate about immigration law. There was a clear gap in the market for a different approach to that of local companies and we therefore decided to establish a transparent, responsible and friendly service.
What significance do you think operating in Sheffield has allowed for White Rose?
The Home Office have three major operational centres in the UK: London (Croydon), Liverpool and Sheffield. Over the last ten years we have developed relationships with Home Office case workers through presenting applications on a weekly basis at the Sheffield Premium Service Centre, now Sheffield Service and Support Centre. Being at the heart of Home Office operations has brought many benefits over the years.
What do you believe is the importance of having an immigration adviser for those looking to apply to enter or remain in the UK?
We believe this is vital – often we are approached by clients who have attempted to apply without assistance and have experienced a refusal. This can be the case when for example, just one payslip has been omitted from an application, or a bank balance has dropped below the minimum required for just one day. The system is full of potential pitfalls and the Home Office will simply refuse applications rather than contact applicants to request further information. Paying for an immigration adviser to handle an application can actually save money in the long run.
What do you feel have been the significant milestones the company has reached so far?
We are most proud of the reputation we have built over the last ten years. I started White Rose Visas as a sole practitioner in 2009 and as we grew, it was important that the team members who joined us shared our approach. Our core values, introduced by our Business Development Manager Mark Day in 2012, are Quality, Thoroughness, Trustworthiness, Openness and Efficiency. It is wonderful to read the Google Reviews clients leave for us which often mention these qualities in the service they have received.
Having employed several team members in the past decade, what attributes do you look for in your immigration advisers?
We look for attention to detail, a caring approach, and intelligence. It is essential that our advisers have a clear understanding of immigration legislation, and that they are ardent about remaining up to date with the constant changes made by the Home Office. The number one aim of our advisers is to assist clients wholeheartedly, enabling individuals to start or maintain their chosen life path.
What measures have you taken to ensure White Rose Visas is set apart from other UK immigration advice companies?
I have ensured that the standard of immigration advice given is superlative, and we are proud to maintain a very high success rate for the applications we handle. All visa applications are checked by a senior adviser before submission, ensuring that there are always two pairs of eyes looking out for any potential pitfalls.
Looking after the other aspect of White Rose Visas, Mark Day has provided exceptional systems to ensure the business runs smoothly – we have our own bespoke client management system ensuring that deadlines are never missed even at busy times, workload is manageable and cases are always well organised. We also provide innovative and exclusive tools to assist clients - for example our absence calculators. Another way in which we stand out from our competitors is that we offer initial advice free of charge and with no obligation. We are also proud of our money back guarantee ensuring that White Rose fees are only paid after an application has been successful.
UK Immigration law has no doubt gone through major changes in the last 10 years; how do you feel these changes have affected both individuals hoping to obtain UK visas and the work of White Rose?
There is no doubt that recent UK government decisions have gradually restricted the options open to individuals planning to live and work in the UK. We have seen the closure of Tier 1 General, the introduction of a high financial requirement for Partner visas, the removal of the Elderly Dependant Relative category and this year even the closure of the Tier 1 Entrepreneur route. These changes are lamentable and we see the UK in danger of becoming even more insular once Brexit occurs.
At White Rose Visas we will continue to work diligently to assist those who want to base themselves in the UK. We spend time exploring new routes and possibilities and are always versatile in our approach, considering options such as long term Visitor routes for those relatives who need to spend time in the UK on a regular basis, or the Representative of an Overseas Business route for those wishing to establish a UK company.
Having now handled thousands of different cases, who are some of the most memorable clients you’ve worked with?
Our greatest joy comes from assisting those to whom injustice has been done, and we regularly challenge incorrect Home Office decisions through the process of Administrative Review, or Pre Action Protocols. Just last month we helped a client who had experienced an incorrect refusal of an Indefinite Leave to Remain application based on ten years UK residence. Can you imagine waiting ten years to gain Permanent status in the UK only to experience an unfair refusal?! You can read about similar cases on our separate blog post.
As White Rose also assists with business-related visas and Sponsor Licencing, are there any businesses, charities or religious organisations you’ve found it particularly rewarding to work with?
We have been delighted to work with many religious organisations over the years, enabling them to bring to the UK priests and missionaries who they desperately need to carry out their functions. We have also been proud to work with many IT organisations, dental practises and pharmacies, placing much needed workers in areas where there is a crippling shortage.
Kim Day, Senior Immigration Adviser at White Rose Visas, comments: Over the next ten years our aim is to continue to provide the best quality of advice and service to our clients. Individuals are at the heart of all we do at White Rose Visas, we are passionate about helping career minded individuals to fulfil their dreams, applicants who have fallen in love to live with their partners, and for companies to recruit the team members they need. We will keep doing our best for everyone we come into contact with and look forward to seeing you all in 2029!