Why is it so difficult to find a job in Canada?
Despite a large labour shortage, many Canadian companies are not hiring foreigners. Why?
The Canadian media constantly reports that there is a labour shortage in almost all areas of the job market. The provincial immigration programs bring in foreign workers to make up for the lack of specialists. If you type in any occupation on a job search website, you will see hundreds or even thousands of openings, for example, on the popular Indeed website there are more than 3,000 jobs for welders.
However, if you try to apply to any of them, you will quickly realize that getting a job in Canada is extremely difficult. You will probably have to send out your CV hundreds or thousands of times before an employer is interested in you. Why does this happen?
Immigration through job
Employment in Canada is one of the surest ways to immigrate because candidates with Canadian work experience benefit from additional immigration programs and get more points.
Recently, there has been especially much attention to such candidates. For example, last year several immigration programs were launched for those who work in Canada, and several more for candidates who found a job in one of the provinces. This year some Canadian regions also launched new programs, the eligibility requirements are very simple, but you have to find a job.
In addition, the federal government did not stand aside and promised to launch a new federal program by September, especially for those who work in Canada. Under this program, they want to grant permanent residency faster. So why is it difficult to find a job when there is such a shortage of specialists in Canada?
Employment for foreigners in Canada
The reason is that the Canadian labour market is closed. The law does not allow employers to hire foreign workers at will. First of all, they must consider applicants among citizens and residents of Canada. There are exceptional cases, one of which will be mentioned at the end of this article.
To hire a foreigner, most employers are required to obtain a document called a Labor Market Impact Assessment, or LMIA for short. This requires a fee of about $1,000 CAD, and it is the employer who pays, not the employee.
In the LMIA, a company proves to the government that there is no suitable citizen or resident for the position. Plus, they have to fill out a lot of paperwork and submit various documents. In general, there are a lot of difficulties, and already at this stage, many employers write in the vacancies that they are not providing an LMIA. But the difficulties do not end with this document.
When a company does get an LMIA with permission to hire a foreigner, then you have to wait for the employee to gather all the missing documents, certificates of criminal record from all the countries where they have lived for more than six months, pay all the fees, undergo a medical examination, get a visa, and complete other formalities. This can take months.
All this time the employer has to wait and lose their money because the employee is not working. And there is a risk that the company spends time and money on hiring, and the employee will just change their mind and will not arrive.
This year Canada has relaxed the requirements for foreigners to work in Canada, companies now have the opportunity to hire more people and for longer contracts.
But it is still logical that employers want to protect themselves as much as possible from the risks associated with hiring foreigners. So first of all they will consider those who:
- is already in Canada, for example, on a tourist visa, because it prohibits work, but does not prohibit interviews;
- is fully prepared to immigrate to Canada, has all the necessary documents, and can quickly arrive in the country;
- speaks English at the proper level, because no matter how valuable a specialist is, it is impossible to pass an interview and work in Canada without knowing the language;
- 100% meets the requirements stated in the vacancy;
- has reference letters from previous employers.
To improve your chances of getting a job in Canada, you need to meet all these requirements. And you also need to write a quality Canadian-format CV. For example, you cannot write personal information in your CV, add your photo, the entire CV must not take up more than one page, and so on. Also, you need to rewrite your CV for each position and add keywords from the job opening you are applying for. If your CV is not written this way, you will not even be considered.
But that's not all. You have to send out your CV hundreds, maybe thousands of times before you find the company that agrees to provide you with an LMIA. And after that, you also have to pass an interview, which usually consists of several stages, and at any stage, you can be rejected. All in all, it is not an easy task.
Is it impossible to find a job?
Still, that does not mean you should stop looking for work in Canada and stay in your country, deciding you can never emigrate. We have interviews with immigrants who got to Canada through employment. And if they succeeded, it means that finding a job is still real, but it takes a lot of time, patience, and putting as much effort into your CV as possible.
If you find an employer in Canada, you can apply for permanent residency through one of the many programs that require a job offer. Or you can work for a while, such as a year, and apply for programs that require Canadian work experience.
There is a little lifehack. You can send your CV to employers who participate in the Atlantic Immigration Program. They have an agreement with the government, and they hire foreigners in a simplified way. The Atlantic Program operates in several provinces:
Besides simplified employment, the program has fairly low eligibility requirements. We have evidence that the Atlantic Program works and that it is a realistic way to get a job. This is an interview with a woman who immigrated to Canada through this program. Moreover, she did not have to send hundreds of CVs because she found a job in just an hour while she was in her home country.
How can we help?
You can order a CV written according to all Canadian standards at our company. According to the law, paid help with finding a job in Canada is prohibited, so you have to look for an employer yourself.