Express Entry: What employers need to know

Helping employers connect with skilled immigrants

Canada is changing its economic immigration system to provide more recruitment possibilities for employers and more opportunities for prospective skilled immigrants.

Moving from the old system…

  • First applicant in, first to be processed
  • Recruitment of global talent at employer's time and expense
  • Difficult to navigate the immigration system due to multiple players
  • 12–14 months to process permanent residence applications

…to Express Entry

  • Canadian employers have a direct role in recruiting economic immigrants
  • Express Entry candidates with a valid job offer or provincial/territorial nomination will quickly receive an Invitation to Apply (ITA) for permanent residence
  • Access to a pool of candidates who fit current labour market needs
  • New and improved Job Bank connects Express Entry candidates with eligible employers in Canada
  • No LMIAfootnote 1 fee for permanent residence applications
  • Six months or less to process permanent residence applications in 80% of cases from receipt of complete application to final decision

How employers can access Express Entry pool candidates

Employers can hire skilled foreign workers to meet their labour needs when they are unable to find Canadians or permanent residents to fill job vacancies. Employers have the flexibility and choice to use current recruiting and hiring practices. They also have access to candidates through: Canada's Job Bank, private sector job boards and Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs) where applicable.

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Text version: Express Entry factsheet for employers


The employer has a number of options to access candidates in the Express Entry pool, including:

  • Job Bank
  • Private Sector Job Boards
  • Provincial Nominee Programs

Express Entry Pool Candidates

Skilled foreign workers who are interested in coming to Canada as economic immigrants must first complete an online Express Entry profile. If they meet the criteria of one of the federal economic immigration programs subject to Express Entry, they will be placed in the pool.

If a candidate does not already have a valid job offer or a provincial/ territorial nomination, they must register with Canada's Job Bank. They should also promote themselves to employers/recruiters, use private sector job boards, etc.

Job Bank

Job Bank is an easy online search tool that helps match Express Entry candidates with employers and jobs in Canada based on their skills, knowledge and experience.

Private Sector Job Boards

Private sector job boards and other employer initiated recruitment activities can also be used to make employer-Express Entry candidate matches.

Provincial Nominee Programs

Provinces and territories are able to recruit candidates from the Express Entry system for their Provincial Nominee Programs to meet local labour market needs. A certain portion of Provincial Nominee Programs is being set aside for candidates in the Express Entry pool. Employers can continue to work with provinces and territories as they currently do.


Matches are made between candidates and employers through Job Bank and / or Private Sector Job Boards.

The employer is matched with an Express Entry candidate and gives a job offer

Invitation to Apply (ITA)

A candidate can get an Invitation to Apply for permanent residence through either a Match with an employer or a Provincial Nominee Program.

Candidates are assessed against others within the pool, and ranked based on criteria that are known to contribute to a newcomer's economic success once in Canada. Only the highest-ranked candidates, and those with valid job offers or provincial/territorial nominations, will be invited to apply for permanent residence.

Candidates then have 60 days to apply for permanent residence under the Federal Skilled Worker Program, Federal Skilled Trades Program, Canadian Experience Class or a portion of the Provincial Nominee Program.

Citizenship and Immigration Canada will process the majority of complete permanent residence applications received (i.e. those including all the necessary supporting documents) in six months or less.

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