Evaluation of the Provincial Nominee Program

Management Response

Recommendations Response Action Accountability Completion date
Program Relevance

1. CIC should work with Provinces and Territories (PTs) to develop a requirement for minimum standards across PT programs regarding language ability.

  • Establishing minimum language requirements is supported by the fact that language is one of the key determinants of economic establishment. In addition, as a portion of PNs move across PTs, having a minimum language requirement could aid in economic establishment in the new provinces, especially since these individuals were not selected based on the needs of the PT they were moving to.
CIC agrees with this recommendation, recognizing that language is a key factor for successful economic and social integration. Minimum language standards would improve PNs’ ability to obtain jobs for which they are qualified, reduce the burden on employers to assess language ability and have the added benefit of contributing to workplace health and safety. CIC has been working with PTs over the last year to develop a proposal on minimum language standards for the PNP.
  • Present a finalized proposal for minimum language standards and mandatory testing for low-skilled Provincial Nominees (NOC C & D) to FPT DMs for approval.
Immigration (lead)/OMC (Permanent Resident Program; International Region)

September 2011



  • Develop guidelines/operational materials for visa officers to assist with the implementation of minimum language standards.
May 2012
  • Implement minimum language standards and mandatory testing for low-skilled PNs.
July 2012
  • Continue discussions with PTs on minimum language requirements and mandatory testing for entrepreneurs, as part of the upcoming review of federal business programs.
  • Work together with PTs to develop a proposal for minimum language standards for other PN streams through FPT work on PNP design, management and accountability.
Fall 2012

2. In order to strengthen linkages between the occupational profile of PNs and PT labour market/economic needs, CIC should work with PTs to enable more effective, evidence-based identification of their needs for PNs.

  • Formalized labour market strategies could assist in the identification of labour shortages, and also be used to assess how PNP addresses these needs.

CIC partially agrees with this recommendation, while recognizing that it is limited to playing a supporting role, since PTs are responsible for developing their own labour market strategies. It should also be noted that the PNP meets a number of different objectives, depending on the specific needs of the PT, (e.g. social, demographic, economic development etc.) As a result, the occupational profile of nominees will not always align directly with specific labour market needs.

However, the Multi-Year Levels Planning (MYLP) process enables CIC to work with PTs to develop a common evidence-base which may include labour market forecasts, and quantitative and qualitative measures of economic, social and public policy drivers. This work may support better coherence between PT labour market needs and the occupational profiles of PNs.

Within bilateral agreements on provincial nominees, all jurisdictions commit to developing an annual provincial nominee plan. CIC will continue to encourage PTs to include elements of their labour market strategy in their annual PN plans and to develop standardized annual PN reports that provide details on the PNs nominated vs. the specific labour market needs identified in their strategies.

  • One day workshop: “Labour Market Forecasting Supply and Demand” organized by the FPT Research Working Group to address PTs’ needs to build an evidence-base for their immigration requirements.
Research & Evaluation September 2011
  • The Federal/Provincial/Territorial (FPT) Research Working Group will be developing a PT research proposal on the relationship between key socio-economic variables and immigration levels.
  • FPT Multi Year Levels Plan (MYLP) Working Group will identify guidelines to support the development of the common evidence base in order to inform the first MYLP Plan for 2013-2015.
Strategic Policy Summer 2012
  • FPT MYLP Working Group will implement the common evidence base guidelines for the first MYLP Plan (2013-2015).
Fall 2012
  • FPT MYLP Working Group will use results of the common evidence base exercise to inform subsequent MYLP plans.
2015 and ongoing

3. CIC should work with PTs to clarify the roles and responsibilities of the Canadian Visa Offices Abroad (CVOAs) and PTs.

Specific areas where clarity is necessary are:

  1. the assessment of PNP applicants’ ability to establish economically, and
  2. fraud detection.

Additional training and/or guidance should be provided regarding how these functions should be interpreted and applied by each partner during the assessment of applications. Clarification and additional guidance or training in these areas would be beneficial and could potentially decrease duplication and the level of effort required for these activities, as well as contribute to more effective fraud verification.

CIC agrees with this recommendation. IRPA/IRPR and bilateral agreements provide some general guidance on roles and responsibilities with respect to the assessment of economic establishment and program integrity. To improve clarity and efficiency, CIC will work with PTs to codify their PNPs in publicly available policy directives or regulations.

A) Each jurisdiction is responsible for the design and management of its respective program, including the development of its own nomination criteria, which are intended to assess the nominee’s ability and likelihood of becoming economically established. PTs are also responsible for conducting the necessary due diligence to support their nomination decisions. CIC confirms the ability to economically establish in addition to ensuring that the nominee meets health, criminality and security requirements of IRPA.

CIC is working closely with PTs on a joint PNP Design, Management and Accountability work plan which will provide greater clarity and direction on how to address the issue of economic establishment.

B) Shared responsibility for immigration also means sharing the responsibility for addressing risks in individual programs. CIC has been working with PTs over the last year to gather information on antifraud, verification and quality assurance mechanisms within their PNPs, as well as identifying their needs for anti-fraud training.

In recognition of the importance of strong program design and integrity for a modernized immigration system, all jurisdictions agreed to work together implement anti-fraud and quality assurance mechanisms to strengthen program integrity and service delivery.

CIC is also reviewing the way in which it processes PNP applications in order to improve productivity, consistency and efficiency for the PNP. Clarifying the roles between CIC and PTs will be part of this work.

  • Update the operational manual chapter on Provincial Nominees to assist visa officers with addressing certain aspects of economic establishment.
Immigration (lead)/OMC (Permanent Resident Program; International Region)

January 2012

  • Develop an Operational Bulletin on economic establishment to provide both visa officers and PTs with greater direction on the meaning of “economically established” and what that entails.
April 2012
  • Hold anti-fraud training session for PTs at CIC’s Buffalo mission to provide an overview of visa office operations as well as anti-fraud tools and practices.
OMC (Program Integrity Division) November 2011
  • Gather detailed information from PTs on verifications conducted for each PNP stream/program.
December 2011
  • Develop Wiki for use by visa officers overseas that contains information that individual PTs have validated prior to their issuing of a nomination certificate, with the dual aims of avoiding duplication of effort and speeding processing times.
June 2012
  • Develop joint activities related to anti-fraud mechanisms and quality assurance with PTs for presentation to FPT DMs.
OMC (Central Processing Region) December 2011
  • Develop plan, in consultation with PTs, to pilot the centralization of processing PNP applications in Canada.
Immigration December 2011
  • Develop options for improved regulation of PNPs, as required.

4. CIC should work with PTs to strengthen the focus on the PNP objective of encouraging the development of Official Language Minority Communities (OLMCs).

  • Given the limited success in meeting this objective the department should review how to best incorporate it into the program design and delivery.

CIC agrees with this recommendation. Encouraging the development of official language minority communities remains an objective of the Canadian immigration system and the PNP, as reflected in IRPA and all of the existing FPT bilateral agreements. Some provinces are very active in promoting their PNPs in francophone countries and make a concerted effort to attract and recruit francophone nominees.

CIC is currently evaluating the impact of the overall initiative to recruit French-speaking newcomers in OLMCs. Evaluation results are due in Spring 2012.

The results may include broader recommendations that will benefit how PNP objectives can be reframed to achieve better results via stronger employer engagement in each province and territory.

CIC is also assessing the implementation of 2006-2011 Strategic Plan to Foster Immigration to francophone minority communities. In this plan, the role of provinces as key partners on the recruitment side will be assessed more generally and may lead to a change of the strategy.

While individual PN program design is the purview of PTs, CIC does agree that it needs to work with PTs to strengthen their outreach activities with OLMCs. CIC will continue to seek the harmonisation or strengthening of OLMC clauses upon the renewal of existing FPT agreements and the inclusion of similar clauses upon the establishment of new ones.

CIC will also review the existing PNP performance measurement framework to ensure that it has adequate indicators for capturing PTs’ activities in this area and will also ensure that this information is captured in the first annual PNP report that will be developed in the coming year.

  • Share results and recommendations of evaluation with PTs when they are available
Integration Integration (lead)/ Immigration
Spring 2012
  • Discussion at FPT Planning Table on results of evaluation and potential implications for the PNP.
IIR Summer 2012
  • Harmonization or strengthening of language clauses upon the renewal of existing FPT bilateral agreements on immigration.
  • Inclusion of language clauses upon the establishment of new FPT bilateral agreements on immigration.
As agreements are either renewed or newly negotiated, OLMCs clauses will be added or strengthened.

5. CIC, in collaboration with PTs, should develop and implement a monitoring and reporting framework that contains common, agreed-upon performance indicators.

  • The department should define baseline data, establish consistent performance measures, determine a reporting schedule, and allocate responsibility within and across PTs.

CIC agrees with this recommendation. Performance measurement is essential for good program management and accountability for results. It provides key information on what is happening in the program between evaluation cycles and helps to identify what is working well and areas that could be improved.

CIC and PTs worked together to develop a performance measurement framework as part of the preparatory work for the PNP evaluation. Based on this framework, CIC and PTs are in the process of developing a set of common performance indicators for jurisdictions to include as part of annual PNP reports.

In recognition of the importance of monitoring and reporting, CIC and PTs have identified activities intended to enhance performance information and to develop comparable outcome indicators for federal and PT evaluations. A key component of the work on evaluation-related indicators will be the development of a measurement approach based on clearly articulated program objectives for each jurisdiction.

  • Review existing PNP performance reporting mechanisms and identify gaps.
Immigration (lead)/ Research & Evaluation Fall/Winter 2011
  • Develop list of indicators to be included in annual report on PNP for presentation to FPT ADMs/DMs.
Spring 2012
  • Collect information from PTs on agreed-upon list of indicators.
Summer 2012
  • Draft first annual report on PNP for approval of FPT ADMs/DMs.
Fall 2012
  • Consult with Research and Evaluation to develop performance indicators that would be most appropriate for ongoing measurement and future evaluations, and to review data sources.
Fall 2011
  • Hold bilateral & multilateral discussions with PTs on potential common indicators
Winter 2011/ Spring 2012
  • Develop common set of indicators to be used for federal & PT PNP evaluations for approval by FPT ADMs/DMs.
Summer 2012

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