Canada is a great place to live and work for immigrants who want to enjoy a high standard of living, a diverse and tolerant society, a stable and prosperous economy, and a friendly and welcoming attitude. However, getting a job in Canada as a foreigner is not a simple task. It requires a lot of planning, research, networking, and perseverance. In this guide, we will give you some tips and resources to help you in your job search in Canada.
- Determine your eligibility
Before you start looking for jobs in Canada, you need to make sure that you are eligible to work in the country. Depending on your situation, you may need to apply for an immigration program or a work permit. There are different types of immigration programs and work permits, each with its own requirements and application process. You can visit the website of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) to find out what programs you are eligible for and how to apply.
Some of the most common immigration programs for foreign workers are:
- Express Entry: This is a system that manages applications for three federal economic immigration programs: the Federal Skilled Worker Program, the Federal Skilled Trades Program, and the Canadian Experience Class. You need to create an online profile and enter your personal information, education, work experience, language skills, and other factors. You will then receive a score based on the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) and be placed in a pool of candidates. Every few weeks, IRCC will invite the highest-ranking candidates to apply for permanent residence. The processing time for Express Entry applications is usually six months or less.
- Provincial Nominee Program (PNP): This is a program that allows provinces and territories to nominate candidates who meet their specific labour market needs. You need to have a valid job offer from an employer in the province or territory you want to settle in, or have a connection to the province or territory, such as a relative, a previous study or work experience, or a provincial nomination from another program. You also need to meet the eligibility criteria of the province or territory you are applying to. The processing time for PNP applications varies depending on the province or territory and the stream you are applying to.
- Atlantic Immigration Pilot (AIP): This is a program that helps employers in the Atlantic provinces (New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland and Labrador) to hire foreign workers who have the skills and experience to fill labour shortages. You need to have a job offer from a designated employer in one of the Atlantic provinces, meet the education, work experience, and language requirements of the program, and have a settlement plan to live and work in the Atlantic region. The processing time for AIP applications is usually six months or less.
Some of the most common work permits for foreign workers are:
- Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP): This is a program that allows employers to hire foreign workers to fill temporary labour and skill shortages. You need to have a job offer from an employer who has obtained a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) from the Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC). An LMIA is a document that shows that there is a need for a foreign worker and that no Canadian worker is available to do the job. You also need to meet the eligibility criteria of the work permit you are applying for, such as the type, duration, and location of the job. The processing time for TFWP applications depends on the country you are applying from and the type of work permit you are applying for.
- International Mobility Program (IMP): This is a program that allows employers to hire foreign workers without an LMIA, based on broader economic, social, or cultural benefits for Canada. You need to have a job offer from an employer who is exempt from the LMIA requirement, or be eligible for an open work permit that does not require a job offer. Some of the categories under the IMP include the International Experience Canada (IEC), the Post-Graduation Work Permit (PGWP), the Intra-Company Transfer (ICT), and the Global Talent Stream (GTS). You also need to meet the eligibility criteria of the work permit you are applying for, such as the age, education, work experience, and language skills. The processing time for IMP applications depends on the country you are applying from and the type of work permit you are applying for.
- Verify if your qualifications are recognized
Once you have determined your eligibility to work in Canada, you need to verify if your qualifications are recognized in the country. Depending on the type of work you want to do, you may need to have your credentials assessed, licensed, or certified by the relevant authorities. You can use the Foreign Credential Recognition Tool to find out if your occupation is regulated, the time and cost to get your credentials recognized, and the available jobs or alternative jobs in your field.
If you have obtained a degree in another country, you will need to get it assessed to verify if your education is recognized in Canada. You can contact a designated organization to get an Educational Credential Assessment (ECA), which is a document that shows how your foreign education compares to Canadian standards. You may need an ECA for immigration purposes, such as applying for Express Entry or some PNP streams, or for employment purposes, such as applying for jobs or professional licensing.
- Search and apply to jobs
After you have ensured that your qualifications are recognized in Canada, you can start searching and applying to jobs. There are various ways to find jobs in Canada, such as:
- Visiting job search websites, such as Job Bank, Indeed, Monster, LinkedIn, and others, where you can browse thousands of job postings from different sectors and locations. You can also create an online profile and upload your resume to showcase your skills and experience to potential employers. On Job Bank, you can also find jobs that are open to international candidates from outside Canada, which are clearly marked with a globe icon.
- Researching companies where you want to work by checking their websites for jobs they post, contacting employers directly to ask if they are hiring, or attending job fairs in your city or town, where you can meet employers and discuss jobs.
- Networking with employers and professionals in your field by joining online platforms, such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and others, where you can follow, connect, and interact with people who share your interests and goals. You can also join professional associations, attend events, workshops, seminars, or webinars, or volunteer for organizations that are related to your industry or occupation.
When applying to jobs in Canada, you need to have a resume and a cover letter that highlight your skills and experience and show why you are a suitable candidate for the job. You should tailor your resume and cover letter to each job you apply for, using keywords and phrases from the job description and the company website. You should also format your resume and cover letter according to Canadian standards, using clear and concise language, bullet points, headings, and sections. You can find tips and examples on how to write a good resume and cover letter on the Job Bank website.
- Prepare for the interview
If you are selected for an interview, you need to prepare well to make a good impression and increase your chances of getting hired. You should research the company and the job, review your resume and cover letter, and practice answering common interview questions. You should also prepare some questions to ask the interviewer, such as about the company culture, the expectations, the challenges, or the next steps. You can find tips and examples on how to prepare for an interview on the Job Bank website.
On the day of the interview, you should dress professionally, arrive on time, bring copies of your resume and other documents, and greet the interviewer with a smile and a firm handshake. You should also be confident, polite, respectful, and enthusiastic, and avoid negative or vague answers. You should also thank the interviewer for their time and follow up with a thank-you email or note within 24 hours.
Finding a job in Canada as a foreigner is not easy, but it is possible with the right preparation, research, networking, and patience. You need to determine your eligibility to work in Canada, verify if your qualifications are recognized, search and apply to jobs, and prepare for the interview. By following these steps, you can improve your chances of getting a job in Canada and start your career in the country.