Please help review my Stage-1 Application

Hello All,

I’m considering applying for the tech nation visa under the exceptional talent route. But I’m a bit vary of my chances.

About me:
I’ve been working for one of the top banks in the US (and worldwide) in the Cyber Security Engineering team for past 7 years. My job involves a lot of R&D and I have applied for and successfully been granted 25+ patents (most of them with me as the sole / primary inventor). I’m also a skilled software developer & have also developed and deployed my patented ideas globally for the bank. Some of these patents have also been cited by many other big-tech organizations including Microsoft, Cisco, Sony, IBM, HP etc. among many others. These are easily verifiable on Google Patents. In addition, I also have 2 research papers in IEEE conferences, and an IEEE journal paper, with decent citations and impact (though these research / journal papers are from my academia years and 5+ years old).

My concerns:
Even though I am a core techie, I work for a bank at the end of the day. The bank does have one of the top cyber-security technology teams in the world, with cybersecurity funding & team size bigger than many large core-tech firms. Will working for a bank vs core-tech company be considered to be a negative factor? Additionally, my LoRs are mostly from Senior VPs / Senior technology heads or leads from different organizations who know me and my work, and its impact very well. Unfortunately I am an introvert and preferred to be in the shadows vs interacting with a lot of people outside. So I do not know many CEOs / CIOs / CTOs like many other profiles I see here, and that has me quite worried.

Also, most of my work / coding was done closed-source, for the company. So I don’t have (and am not allowed to contribute) any code on public Github, Stackoverflow etc. I can try to attach a redacted / blurred screenshot of my commits in our internal source control channels if required, but not sure if it’ll help.

Finally, about the criteria & evidence I’m thinking of submitting:
Documents & Evidence:

  • Personal Statement
  • 3 LoR from SVP, Sr. Tech heads / leads from 3 different major companies who personally know me and my work. Can probably also get LoRs from CEO / founder of a startup in India, but I think better known SVPs of bigger firms in the US would have more value?
    Ev1) Patent List (26+ approved patents), Google Patents, Citations from other companies referencing them, Patent photos
    Ev2) HR letter with experience, salary, salary slips with bonuses, job description etc.
    Ev3) Ack & reference letter (technical) for how ‘Product A’ I built (based on one of my patents) is used by the team + patent architecture (that is available publicly)
    Ev4) Ack & reference letter (technical) for how ‘Product B’ I built (based on one of my patents) is used by the team + patent architecture (that is available publicly)
    Ev5) Ack & reference letter (technical) for how a solution I built & automated was used to protect the bank against a high-impact (and highly visible) cyber-attack. How it is also helping other companies / start-ups.
    Ev6) Ack & reference letter (technical) for how ‘Product C’ I built (based on one of my patents) is used by the team + patent architecture (that is available publicly)
    Ev7) Tech Lead / Architect reference from senior leaders / management of my team
    Ev8) Google Scholar Profile & publications abstracts

Mandatory Criteria:

  • You led the growth of a product-led digital technology company, product or team inside a digital technology company, as evidenced by reference letter(s) from leading industry expert(s) describing your work
  • You command a high salary or other remuneration for your services, as evidenced by commercial or employment contracts with salary information including any bonus and equity options and history of earnings
    Evidence: Ev1, Ev2, LoR1, LoR2, Ev7

Optional Criteria:

  1. A proven track record for innovation as a founder or senior executive of a product-led digital technology company or as an employee working on a new digital field or concept
    Evidence: Ev1, Ev2, Ev8

  2. they have made significant technical, commercial or entrepreneurial contributions to the field as a founder, senior executive, board member or employee of a product-led digital technology company|
    Evidence: Ev2, Ev3, Ev4, Ev5, Ev6, Ev7

Any thoughts or recommendations? Do you think I would qualify for the exceptional talent route?
How would you suggest I portray my profile to make it stronger? What other evidence would you recommend that I add (since unfortunately, it’ll be difficult for me to share more details regarding my work since it’ll be confidential in my application)?

Looking forward to hearing your suggestions.
Thanks!

Hello @rahulisola.

You have an impressive profile, won’t be a problem to satisfy two OCs. But I have some concerns:

  1. Letters alone are not sufficient.
  2. Salary alone is not sufficient.
  3. Non technical recommenders from non-technical organisations are not generally eligible.

It is tricky to satisfy MC, as the bank is not a product-led technology company (well, unless it is a digital bank). And Ev3-Ev6 looks very similar to consulting. You have a chance of rejection just because of those two points. But it is worth trying, you have to repack it really (!!!) carefully. You might try to build your application around tech-driven companies, where you led the product. Anyway, I can’t advise much here. Sounds like very tricky case.

Best wishes,
Savva.

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Thank you very much @Savvkin. Appreciate the response.

“Sounds like very tricky case.” - that is what I was afraid of :slight_smile:
I was not sure where I stand and if it is even worth trying.

To clarify regarding #3. Non technical recommenders from non-technical organisations are not generally eligible - it’ll be technical recommendation from experts in the field of cybersecurity and software development leads from tech companies or tech teams in other companies. When I mentioned (technical) on the other Ev3-6, I just meant it’ll be directly related to the product / solution / ML / automation mentioned in the Ev# and will include the patent architecture diagrams related to that Ev#.

Based on what you mentioned - what if I split Ev3-6 and separate out the architecture diagrams / patent diagrams of my top patents, and I can then also add them along with Ev1 to satisfy MC?
Would Ev1 (which’ll include patent list exported from Google Patents, along with the title, list of companies that have used / cited them etc.) + architecture diagrams help make a better case for MC?

As for Ev3-6: I’ve never worked for any consulting firms. All of my work & evidence is in directly in the company’s engineering: cyber-security / technology team.

As you mentioned, the bank is not a product-led technology company, but it is definitely tech-driven, where I led the ‘tech products’ built in the cybersecurity domain that helped protect the entire firm (and others as well).

I think you have a very good profile. Working for a bank is not a problem as long as you are a technical person. Tech Nation updated guided says working as a tech person in a non-tech company is fine. I think you can potentially use OC4 since you have done some research. If you are not going to use OC4, you may want to use some of your research contributions in the mandatory criteria. Did you present at a research conference or publish your work in a major journal.

As it stands, your profile looks great for talent but you have not shown how you are recognized as a leader.

Lastly, nothing stops you from using a founder in a startup for your recommendation, the question is, is the person a known tech expert?

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Hi @Francisca_Chiedu

Thank you for the response. That helps me a lot to know bank shouldn’t be an issue.
To answer your question- yes, I do have both conference and journal papers and all published in IEEE conferences / journal. My concern with OC4 is that it is more than 5 years old. So I may not be able to use it right?

As for the recommendation- No. I wouldn’t call them known. That’s why I was thinking of getting it from known Senior experts in Sr. Vice president/ Lead positions vs lesser known CEO / founders. I was not sure what carriers more weight- position or reputation?

Finally, as for recognition as a leader - I’ve been leading the R&D effort of the team and global deployment efforts, and all my patents have me as either the primary or sole inventor. Would a combination of that + getting the recommendations to mention how I’ve led the efforts + high salary help?

It could help, however, I have seen other rejection feedback shared on this platform which suggested they want external recognition for your work. So a reference letter and high salary may not be sufficient. Speaking events and articles work better.

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It is tough to believe that someone with your profile will be rejected on a technicality. I don’t think that would be the case. You should use your patent profile, your citations and any open source contributions front and centre.

I am confident that presented well, you will be able to succeed in your endorsement application.