Yesterday I posted an article explaining how the new document procedure has impacted the process thus far, causing low issued numbers. I think my concern might need further clarification. This is something that mostly affects EU and AF region. AS region is fine, there are ample visas, progress up to now is fine and there is time left. OC and SA are also OK – so I am not going to get into specifics for AS, SA or OC regions.
For EU and AF, we can try and calculate the likely backlog based on an assumption of what the final response rate will be. The response rate in previous years is measured as cases (disregarding holes) that submit their DS260 and therefore get scheduled for interviews. Now, there is an extra step – submitting documents. So – there could be some cases that submit their DS260 but never submit their documents. In theory (based on the updated instructions), that should mean those cases are not scheduled for interview. So – again, that means looking at cases which are scheduled for interview. The response rate always “grows” over time, since someone can delay submission of the DS260 for many months after the initial results announcement. In fact, there will be cases that submit as late as May and June this year that still get scheduled for interviews.
The source data for the calculations below are the data files on Xarthisius’ site. A big thanks to him for creating the process and hosting the data and of course to the willing scrapers. Two scrapers have solved over 20,000 captchas , so a big thank you to Petr and Mena (plus Anthony, Mena’s son!). There are three others who have solved over 10,000 captchas also, Recocanovic, Anna and Xhana – again, an awesome effort, and much appreciated.
OK – so how do we get a response rate to start with. Well – that is really a matter of prediction – so it is not a number we can be 100% certain about, but we can take last years numbers and adjust them. The response rate for EU last year was 66%, and AF region was 64%. Since the new document procedure will now miss some cases who don’t go through the additional step of submitting documents, we should lower both those numbers. Because I have observed a higher “no show” rate in AF region in previous years, I think it is wise to assume a bigger reduction for AF than EU – so let’s take our assumptions based on 59% for EU and 55% for AF. I cannot be certain of those numbers – it could be higher or lower in the end. By the way – for those calculating based on prior year success rates, remember to adjust those rates because no shows, AP and refusals will be lower since people have jumped through an extra hoop and have shown documents prior to being scheduled.
So then we can take those assumed response rates and use them to calculate how many cases should be responses, compare to how many are responses so far and look at the remaining cases (not yet current) to calculate how many of those will want interviews.
It is important to note that I am NOT talking about quotas and caps here. I am simplifying and assuming there are enough visas for all. That may or may not be the case – again – we really have to wait and see based on new issued rates, derivative rates and so on. So – this is really about remaining demand and whether there is logistical capacity for that demand.
For EU, there are real 11927 cases already current (below 21900) and 3158 cases left above 21900. Of the 11927, 5313 are “responses” meaning a response rate of 44.5%. If we assume a response rate of 59%. that means there are 1724 cases, already current, but not yet scheduled – in other words – the “backlog”. Of the remaining 3158 cases we could assume that 1863 of them will respond. So that is a total of 3587 cases that would need to be scheduled in the last 4 months of interviews. The May interviews in EU region were 1009, and that is in line with (or even a little lower than) what I have seen in previous years. So – I think capacity will be OK in EU – it’s just a matter of whether KCC can keep the numbers up with the new procedure.
OK – so now the same exercise for AF region.
For AF, there are real 16098 cases already current (below 24500) and 8925 cases left above 24500. I am ignoring the affect of Egypt on these numbers, so this is somewhat incorrect – but close enough to make the point. Of the 16098, 6688 are “responses” meaning a response rate of 41.5%. If we assume a response rate of 55%. that means there are 2166 cases, already current, but not yet scheduled – in other words – the “backlog”. Of the remaining 8925 cases we could assume that 4909 of them will respond. So that is a total of 7075 cases that would need to be scheduled in the last 4 months of interviews. The May interviews in AF region were 1137, and that is lower than capacity I have seen in previous years. So – we need to see higher number of interviews for AF region. And again it is a matter of whether KCC can keep the numbers up with the new procedure.
I hope this helps people understand a little better. I know I am going to get some questions from people who have not bothered to read this whole article – so those people will simply be told to read the article.