Expert Tips And Advice To Help Make Your Immigration Dream Become A Reality
Oct 2nd, 2012
Certified Canadian Immigration Consultant Matthew Sell shares his knowledge and expertise.
This article will explore the common issues and topics that you need to know in order to successfully emigrate and settle in Canada.
The Great Canadian Job Hunt
The hunt is on
It used to be that Europeans traveled to Canada to hunt bear and beaver tails. That is until recently. When the Minister for Immigration, Jason Kenney announced a moratorium on Federal Skilled Worker applications without a job offer or if the applicant is currently studying for, or having completed a PHD at a Canada institution. Meaning that people wishing to immigrate to Canada are hunting for a very different prize indeed.
The proposed New Federal Skilled Worker program has not been implemented yet. Until the new program is rolled out Canada’s immigration process is going to be more employer driven than ever before.
Changes to Canadian Immigration Policy
Here is why, Canada’s recently elected Conservative majority Government is continuing their slow but steady shift towards the devolution of the responsibility of the selection of immigrants to the provinces, where most programs require the applicant to have a Canadian job offer.
There is currently no cap on Federal Skilled Worker Immigration with an Arranged Employment Opinion, making a validated Canadian job offer ever more crucial for many people.
The Federal Canadian Experience Program requires applicants to have Canadian work experience too, meaning that you have to have worked in a paid full time skilled occupation in Canada to meet the requirements of the program in order to be eligible to apply.
So what does this mean for people wishing to immigrate to Canada? Well, it places greater emphasis on finding a job or job offer in Canada.
So how do experienced professionals and trades people find jobs in Canada?
Firstly, beware of anyone professing to be able to secure you an Arranged Employment Opinion or Job offer. Citizenship and Immigration Canada is cracking down on fraudulent AEO’s and trying to protect the integrity of the program. Situations where the employer has not met the employee are the first to undergo scrutiny, after all, what type of employer is going to hire an employee sight unseen. It is against Canadian Employment law for anyone to charge for a Canadian job offer whether that cost is built into a professional service fee or not.
One alternative for professionals working in specialized areas or in occupations in demand is to consider approaching reputable employment agencies.
DIY Job Hunting
However, in my experience it is far better to adopt a ‘do it yourself’ approach to job hunting. This enables you to form relationships with employers and brings credibility to any Arranged Employment Opinion, Labor Market Opinion or Provincial Nominee application that may follow.
Working Holiday or Recce Trip
For the under 30 years old (or under 35 for some Countries) the ‘International Experience Class’ is an excellent way to gain an open work authorization for 1 year with the opportunity to apply for another 1 year visa at a later date. Giving participants time to prove their worth with an employer and start the process whilst in Canada.
If this is not possible then the next best thing is to come to Canada on a recce trip.
Those that do commit to visiting Canada and searching out opportunities should consider following these important steps and remember Canadian culture is likely to be different to that of your home country and such differences do present themselves in the hiring culture;
Know thy Industry in Canada
Like most successes in life much is down to good research and planning and treating your job hunt like it is a full time job in it’s own right. Much can be done in the way of learning about your industry in Canada, finding out where the labor shortages are for your profession and mailing out good old fashioned hard copy resumes and individually tailored cover letters before you even set foot in Canada so that you can follow up on these when you arrive.
A good place to start researching your occupation and industry in Canada is through using Canadian Internet job sites such as Monster.ca
, this will acquaint you with the types of jobs being advertised, their location, number, rates of pay and licensing. Reading local newspapers from the province you intend to settle in is also an excellent source for macro economic trends and labor market information.
Answering the question: where are the current labor market shortages for my occupation is a great place to start, for example North Eastern British Columbia and Northern Alberta are good places to find work in the oil and gas industry as they are undergoing expansion and development and experiencing skilled and unskilled worker shortages. However you wouldn’t necessarily know this unless you were looking!
Turn your C.V. into a Canadian Resume
Many Canadian’s will not know what you are talking about if you speak of your Curriculum Vitae. In Canada this document is called a resume and is ideally a one-page document outlining your education and work experience. Spend time turning your C.V. into a Canadian resume. Remember you are in Canada now so use Canadian spelling and explain how your credentials and work experience are relevant and a good fit for the position.
The importance of a good cover letter
Your resume should clearly and succinctly tell them about your work experience and credentials. It is the purpose of your cover letter to catch their eye and explain why you are suitable for the position and create the link between the job requirements and the ways in which you meet them. Always tailor your cover letter to the position and always address your cover letter to a specific person.
Just posting your resume is not enough, follow up is crucial
Unfortunately, just posting your resume is unlikely to be enough to land you a job you need to follow up.
The phone is your friend
Canadian employers like to meet face to face with their prospective employees and if you cannot do that then the next best thing is calling them. Calling is a good tool for research and follow up.
Once you have identified target companies call them and ask what is the employment climate like in that Industry, whom should you speak to from which department, if they are not hiring ask what companies are hiring?
Always be polite and send thank you emails to people who have provided you with useful information.
The hidden job market & the importance of networking
There is a huge hidden job market in Canada, where it is estimated that upwards of 50% of positions are not advertised. With targeted networking; joining relevant professional associations, attending meetings, asking people in your industry where the jobs are is often an effective way of sourcing opportunities.
Have Realistic Expectations
Having realistic expectation is important to being successful in securing Canadian employment. Remember, it is likely that you will not have Canadian work experience so it is advisable to consider stepping down a level on your expectations in pay and position. If you are good at your job, promotion will follow quickly. Your first goal is to secure that all-important job offer.
When to mention immigration
The jury is still out on when to mention immigration. Certainly, you do not want to be approaching companies asking them for a job so that you can immigrate to Canada. A better approach is to explain why you are a good fit for the position and to ensure you know the options and can explain the immigration process and timeline when the topic is discussed.
Generally, in cases where there is a skills shortage, or someone is bringing specific economic benefits to a company employers are willing help out.
Immigration to Canada for many people is now employer driven making it necessary to secure a Canadian job offer. Finding a Canadian job requires thorough research of your occupation and industry, determination and tailored marketing of your work experience and credentials. The best way to do this is to visit Canada and make it your job to find an employer.
Authored by Matthew Sell of CIP Consulting - ‘Your Immigration Partners’
As Certified Canadian Immigration Consultants, CIP Consulting provides dependable, trusted advice and personalized immigration service tailored to the needs of individuals.
Tel: +1 (604) 722 8930 - Fax: +1 (604) 569 1825
Web: www.cipcanada.com, www.immigrationinvestor.ca