Looking for talent abroad? Looking to keep your international hire in Canada? As an employer, what are your options?
Luckily, there is a network of outreach officers from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) located across Canada that can help! Outreach officers help Canadian employers navigate the immigration system to support their hiring needs and help dive economic growth. They can also help connect employers with skilled workers overseas.
Based in Winnipeg, Amara Amath, IRCC’s outreach officer for the Prairies, meets with employers and provides them with useful and up-to-date information on temporary and permanent economic immigration programs that could play a role in their recruitment and retention strategies.
The Government of Canada’s Global Skills Strategy launched in 2017 as a response to feedback heard from employers across Canada, especially those in the ICT sector. Four pillars make up the Global Skills Strategy (GSS), each designed to make the process easier for Canadian businesses when they need to attract talent from abroad:
1) Two-week processing of work permits for workers in high-skilled occupations; IRCC will process complete applications submitted online within two weeks or less. Most ICT related positions would qualify for two week processing time.
2) An exemption from the work permit requirement for highly-skilled workers coming to Canada for a short-term work stint (no more than 15 or 30 consecutive days).
3) A dedicated service channel to help companies navigate the immigration system when they are making a significant investment in Canada. Employers can contact an IRCC officer to further discuss immigration options and get assistance on their respective applications. This isn’t a call centre, but a very personalized and boutique service for employers who have been referred to IRCC by one of the investment-focused organizations participating in the GSS as a referral partner. ICTAM is one referral partner!
4) Faster processing of Labour Market Impact Assessments (LMIA); LMIAs that fall under GSS (including in-demand ICT occupations) are processed within 10 business days by Employment and Social Development Canada through the Global Talent Stream of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program.