Attracting and retaining skilled labour is an increasingly difficult challenge that many Canadian businesses must overcome. In 2014 nearly 60% of businesses responding to a Management Issues Survey by Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters (CME) indicated it was one of their primary concerns. To eliminate this challenge, the Canadian government is now offering increased assistance through the Federal Express Entry Program. Businesses who are struggling to find skilled workers within the Canadian labour market can access an international talent pool, filled with skilled job-seekers from across the world. Federal Express Entry Program workers will be given expedited permanent resident status, helping businesses to fill their skills gaps in approximately 6 months, much quicker than typical immigration processes. New data suggests that 71% of employers in western Canada are unaware of the Federal Express Entry Program, a recruitment resource providing access to foreign skilled labour. This blog will discuss how Canadian employers can access new skillsets.
Related Blog: ‘Open Doors’ Small Business Funding for Training CNC Machinists – In response to a growing shortage of skilled labour in Ontario, the provincial government has created a training and hiring grant program called Open Doors to help develop youth CNC machinists.
What is the Objective of the Federal Express Entry Program?
A technical skills gap currently exists within the Canadian economy, limiting the innovation and success of businesses across the country. Employers have identified the skills necessary to enhance their business, however a void of Canadian residents possessing those skills makes is difficult to find the labour required. Traditional methods for hiring economic immigrants would take years to complete and made a barrier for businesses, who remained without critical skills they were in need of.
The Federal Express Entry Program will help expedite the process of immigrating foreign skilled workers in two ways:
- Employers will be matched with qualified skilled workers online through Canada Job Bank; and
- The speed of the immigration process is substantially quicker.
Through a simple application process, employers can instantly be matched with job candidates supporting the skills needed to keep their business growing.
How Does the Federal Express Entry Program Operate?
Businesses interested in participating in the Federal Express Entry Program should first consider the process of hiring a foreign skilled worker.
How to Register for Federal Express Entry Program
Businesses must consider the domestic labour pool before hiring a foreign skilled worker. Employers who are interested in using Federal Express Entry Program need to post their job advertisement on Canada Job Bank’s website for a minimum of 30 days prior to extending a job offer to a non-Canadian resident. This allows businesses to continue evaluating the Canadian labour market to fill the position prior to advancing with the Federal Express Entry Program.
Employers who wish to hire a skilled foreign worker must then complete a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) that demonstrates the inability to find similar candidates within Canada. Employers must submit their LMIA for government approval prior to providing a job offer to the candidate.
Finding a Skilled Foreign Worker
Employers will be able to access foreign skilled workers through their internal hiring and recruiting practices, or through the Canada Job Bank. Those who wish to use the Job Bank will be able to search candidates or be matched to those most qualified for a particular job. The Canada Job Bank uses a Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) to assess the potential of candidates through key areas including:
- Work experience;
- Language ability;
- Skills; and
Employers will have the opportunity to contact international job seekers to setup interviews and other assessments prior to awarding them with a job offer.
Applying for Permanent Residence
Businesses will provide their candidate with a positive Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) and a formal job offer letter. Candidates are then required to include these documents in their Express Entry profile. Soon after these documents have been received by the federal government, the foreign worker will be offered an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for permanent residence in Canada.
Get Started with Federal Express Entry Program
For more information on the Federal Express Entry Program, or to post an employment opportunity online, visit Canada Job Bank’s website.