Both Employers and Employees Need to Prepare for Introduction of Express Entry program in January 2015

Citizenship and Immigration Minister Chris Alexander is encouraging leading businesses and employers across Canada to become acquainted with the Express Entry program, which will be introduced in January 2015.

This new immigration program will allow Canadian employers to consider skilled candidates for jobs for which no Canadian or permanent resident is available. Alexander has been meeting with business leaders on a regular basis to explain how the system will work.

To become an Express Entry candidate, an online profile indicating an interest in immigrating to Canada must be submitted, and the applicant must meet the criteria of at least one of the three federal immigration programs: the Federal Skilled Worker Program, the Federal Skilled Trades Program and Canadian Experience Class. These candidates are also eligible to be nominated for provincial nominee programs.

A ranking system will be in place to systematically classify Express Entry candidates, based on criteria that lead to economic success once in Canada. The highest ranked candidates will be invited by Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) to apply for permanent residence.

The occupations offered to candidates of the Express Entry program will depend on the current Labour Market Impact Assessment.

Canada has already welcome 150,000 new citizens over the past year, which is more than double the amount of successful immigrants from the year before. Alexander uses these statistics to suggest that the immigration is already becoming more efficient, and the Express Entry program will only advance this efficiency.

Changes to the Citizenship Act have already begun to simplify the decision-making process regarding citizenship, significantly reducing wait times. CIC hopes to bring the citizenship application processing time down to less than one year, and to reduce the current backlog of applications by more than 80% in the next two to three years.

To become a successful candidate of Express Entry, an applicant requires a well-rounded request that is attractive to both employers and the requirements of permanent residency. Foreign Workers Canada (FWCanada) offers services to assist with the navigation of becoming an Express Entry candidate. A free assessment form can be found here, and although the Express Entry program does not open until January 2015, all submitted information will be re-assessed for eligibility for Express Entry when the program commences.

FWCanada is a Montreal-based immigration law firm that provides professional legal services on Canadian immigration. For more tips and updates on Canadian immigration follow FWCanada on Facebook, Twitter, and Linkedin.

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