5 Tips to Move Your Career to Canada

Posted on Jun 4, 2019 | 0 comments

5 Tips to Move Your Career to Canada

Are you interested in immigration to Canada, but not sure how to do it? Whether you want to make Canada your temporary or permanent home, it is important to get access to the most up-to-date information.

Boasting the highest per capita immigration rate in the world, more than 250,000 newcomers every year select Canada as their new home, with thousands more arriving for short-term stays as expats. The country has been shaped by successive waves of immigration, including those from Western Europe and more recently from Asia and India. The result is a multicultural country with over 30 ethnic groups.

Canada has developed economically and technologically in parallel to the United States, but historically has been influenced by European culture and traditions, especially the British and French. This is most likely why English and French are recognized by the Constitution of Canada as “official languages,” which means that many services, including those offered by the federal government, are available in both languages. Needless to say, speaking, writing and reading English, French, or both is a must and the federal government runs a free program for eligible newcomers.

If you are interested in moving your career to Canada, here are five tips to consider when seeking a job in Canada:

1. Consider temporary or contract employment.

It is notoriously difficult to find a position before you actually arrive in Canada, unless you have very specific qualifications that are in high demand in Canada. Try to plan a short trip during which you will meet prospective employers before you actually move to Canada.

If you are already in the country, overcome your lack of Canadian experience by finding a temporary position through a staffing agency. Their services are usually free in Canada and they are less particular than traditional employers, so long as you have a valid work permit.

You may find it challenging to secure a position within an organization, but they may be interested in hiring you as a consultant or contractor. This can be common among the multinationals, nonprofits, and multilaterals.

2. Prepare your legal documents.

People who are not Canadian citizens or permanent residents of Canada and who wish to work temporarily in Canada should follow the appropriate application process. A work permit is issued if the application is accepted. A temporary resident visa may also be required, depending on the country you come from. The Going to Canada website helps you to prepare for the challenges of finding a permanent or temporary job.

For comprehensive and the most up-to-date information on requirements and support available for newcomers living and working in Canada, check the Services to Newcomers government web page.

As a part of the job search preparation phase, have your foreign credentials recognized in Canada as soon as you can. Contact the Foreign Credentials Referral Office or your local credential assessment agency.

Don’t hesitate to contact your local community center or employment services agencies (e.g. Toronto Employment and Social Services). Most newcomers with a valid work permit or permanent residents are eligible and you will have access to career planning, education, training and help for job seekers.

3. Ensure you have the appropriate recognized credentials.

If you want to work in a job that requires a license (a regulated occupation), contact a regulatory body that regulates the occupation. In many provinces regulated occupations’ organizations are well known to be strict. The names and contact information for regulatory bodies can be found in the Working in Canada Tool. The information from this site can also serve as a networking resource.

4. Consider job options that work for other expats in Canada

Many expats work with the numerous multinational organizations, in the educational sector, or developing private businesses. Native language services can provide a good part-time or even full-time job for expats. Editing or consulting jobs on various projects can also prove a potential way to “get your foot” into a more stable position. You need to be resourceful, open to meeting new people, and willing to network at any given opportunity to be successful.

5. Network, network, network!

Most expats find jobs by networking. Many people do not advertise jobs in traditional ways as sometimes offices are overwhelmed by applicants. In addition, having a personal working relationship with an individual is favored highly over a “walk-in applicant.” That is not to say traditional methods are nonexistent as many jobs are still posted on websites, newspapers and other places.

Connect with cultural associations that speak your language and can identify your needs. Many international communities are represented various cities (check out the Relocate Canada web site).

Canadian Careers is a list of professional associations and organization organized by sector – a good resource to help you learn more about various industries and occupations and make new contacts.


By Lucia Kolaja Bordean, Program Specialist, Passport Career

Interested in learning more about how to succeed while working in a new country?

Passport Career provides more detailed career information and extensive resources about networking, finding an international job or internship, country-specific business protocol and culture, alternative career opportunities, writing country-specific resumes/CVs, cover letters and interview strategies for other countries. If your university/college, organization, company, embassy, library, or other institution would like access to our country portfolios and global career training program (50,000+ pages of expert content for 90+ countries and 275+ cities) to share with your students, employees, spouses/partners, and others managing a national or international career transition, please click here to contact us (or send email to: global@passportcareer.com) regarding a free, live, online demo and details on how to obtain a license to access Passport Career. Individuals making a career transition are also encouraged to contact us for a free demo of our portal.

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