Business Council of Canada recently said that the increased immigration is vital for Canada’s economy in future. Canada works hard to position itself as an ideal home for the best and the brightest global talent across all industries.
The Business Council of Canada (BCC) recently released a report in which 80 Canadian businesses were surveyed about how they use Canada’s immigration programs to hire skilled workers. The businesses surveyed cumulatively employee over 1.6 million workers. Two thirds of companies surveyed say they recruit talent overseas using Canada’s immigration system. The remaining third hires immigrants who have already relocated to Canada.
High job vacancies and a growing labor shortage
Canada’s job vacancy rate is at all-time high. The country is facing a labor shortage that is bound to increase into 2030 when over nine million Canadians reach the retirement age of 65.According to the BCC survey, all employers agree that Canada’s labor shortage is widespread, and they face real difficulty finding skilled workers across all industries. Canada’s tech sector has been hit hardest by labor shortages as industry growth and demand is outpacing the number of skilled workers. Professions such as computer science, engineering and information tech are in high demand.Based on the 2020 Express Entry annual report, candidates for permanent residency who had experience in these occupations were among the most likely to receive an invitation to apply (ITA).
Top programs used by Canadian employers
Temporary Work Permits
Global Talent Stream: The Global Talent Stream (GTS) is a temporary work permit that falls under the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP). It is exclusively for candidates with work experience in tech occupations and meant to meet the urgent demands of the rapidly growing tech sector.
Express Entry Programs
Express Entry is the Canadian government’s largest entry stream for skilled immigrants who wish to become permanent residents.Candidates with tech backgrounds are the leading recipients of permanent residence invitations under Express Entry.
Federal Skilled Worker Program
Candidates in the Federal Skilled Worker Program must meet a minimum requirement of one year of skilled work experience, a minimum Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) score of 7 and satisfy the minimum educational requirements for their occupation by getting an Educational Credential Assessment (ECA).
Canadian Experience Class
Under the Canadian Experience Class (CEC), candidates must have one year of Canadian work experience completed in the past five years, as well as meet minimum language requirements depending on where their occupation falls in the NOC skill codes.
Only half of respondents agree that the Immigration Levels Plan for 2022-2024 is adequate to address their business needs and the growing labor shortages. The remaining half indicated that the number of economic immigrants needs to be increased but acknowledged that this is not practical until the government has a plan in place to ensure there is adequate housing and other infrastructure to support new immigrants, such as childcare and healthcare.This can take the form of language training, assisting employees in obtaining recognition of foreign credentials and relocation assistance.
Canadian businesses expect that competition for skilled immigrants will intensify over the next few years. This is especially true of recent graduates who they say face significant barriers in obtaining permanent residency in Canada due to the time it takes to gain sufficient work experience.
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