How to Effectively Find a Job in Canada?

Leaving for a new country is always a big undertaking, even if moving to a welcoming and immigrant-friendly country like Canada. One of the questions that first comes to mind is “how to get a job in Canada as an immigrant?”

Canada presents ample job opportunities and a straightforward process of filing for and receiving the various required permits and licenses. Nevertheless, the more thought-out the plan for your integration into the Canadian workforce is, the easier and smoother the process will be.

Here are the steps you can take in order to secure a job in Canada.

Secure a Work Permit

Not all jobs in Canada will need a work permit. Although most full-time jobs will require filing the necessary paperwork with government officials, there is a number of occupations that are license-exempt:

  • Aviation-related incident inspectors
  • Pastorate
  • Convention staff
  • Emergency service workers
  • Examiners and evaluators
  • Farmworkers
  • Foreign government officials and diplomats
  • Implied status judges and referees
  • International transportation workers
  • Entertainment industry professionals
  • Military personnel
  • Students doing off-campus and on-campus work

Immigrants entering the country with a work visa will already have a work permit. After securing a job offer from a CIC-compliant Canadian business, filing the required applications, and paying the government-mandated fees, the applicant will be issued with an employer-specific work permit. If the applicant decides to leave their current employer, they will need to obtain a new permit before getting hired by another Canadian business.

If neither of these scenarios applies, you'll have to file for either one of the following work permits:

  • Open Work Permit. This will allow you to apply for a job with any employer except for those found to be non-compliant by the CIC or ones that do business related to the sex trade.
  • Employer-Specific Work Permit. This permit specifies the name of the business you can work with, the maximum duration of your employment, and the exact location of your future workplace.

Polish Your English and French

Canada is a bilingual country with both English and French having equal status as the country’s official languages. Knowing both is not a requirement, but if you're proficient in either, you may already have a better chance of securing a job in your trade.

If French is your language of choice, you may want to set your sights on Quebec. The language is legally protected in the province with employers officially obligated to provide all work documents and tools in French at the request of their staff.

Get the Required Accreditation

The next step in planning for your job hunt will be passing an Educational Credential Assessment (ECA). This procedure confirms that your foreign degree or diploma is valid and equivalent to a Canadian one.

Some jobs will require you to have your qualifications certified in order to legally practice your trade in Canada. This, for example, applies to:

  • teachers;
  • doctors;
  • physiotherapists;
  • social workers.

If your profession requires licensing, you'll have to complete additional training and/or examinations. These are often costly and will have a processing period of up to six months — make sure that you factor this into your immigration timeline.

In addition to this, certain regulated professions need additional certification that will vary based on the area where you are planning to work. For these, you will need to get a Canadian license in order to work in your occupation. The license will be issued by the local authority in charge of regulating your specific profession. This applies to most legal, financial, and medical jobs.

Non-regulated professions will not require a license or certification. Bookkeepers, accountants, industrial and mechanical engineers, and IT professionals can begin working as soon as they receive their permits.

Write a Stand-out Resume

After you’ve acquired the necessary certification, it’s time to dust off your writing skills and get to work on your resume:

  • Do not embellish or lie on your CV. Potential employers will double-check all major information you provide in your application. Keep to the facts and provide all available documents to support your claims.
  • Provide proof of prior job experience. Some employers may ask for confirmation of your previous experience in the industry.
  • Get recommendations from former employers and colleagues. A good reference will often seal the deal. Remember to include the contact information of your referees — they may be contacted in order to verify the information they provide.
  • Attach the results of language tests. Most jobs will require you to show proficiency in either French or English or in order to practice.
  • Take advantage of LinkedIn. This social media tool serves as your online resume and may get you noticed by recruiters and businesses that use the website to source candidates for jobs.

Browse Popular Job Portals

After you’ve successfully drafted your CV, it’s time to upload it to a job portal. Some of the major job listing websites in Canada include:

What happens next is entirely up to you: the goal is to set yourself apart from other competitors applying for jobs in Canada. Be particular and enthusiastic in your job search. Avoid the common mistakes of blanket-bombing businesses with the same cover letter. Always ensure that you follow up within a week of sending your CV to demonstrate your interest.

Remember that responding to online job ads is not the only way to market yourself to potential employers. Other truly effective ways of finding a job in Canada is networking with industry professionals, cold calls, and informational interviews. Taking advantage of all available ways of distributing your resume is your fastest route into a new job.

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