Hire permanent workers: How to make a job offer

If you’re a Canadian employer who can’t find Canadians or permanent residents to fill job vacancies, you can hire Express Entry candidates to meet your labour needs. To do this, you must make a valid job offer through Express Entry.

What you need to do to hire a skilled foreign worker through Express Entry

To hire an Express Entry candidate, you must:

  1. Check your eligibility.
  2. Get a labour market impact assessment (LMIA) (if you need one).
  3. Make a valid job offer.

Step 1: Check your eligibility

Types of jobs that qualify

Skilled work includes jobs under skill type 0 and skill level A and B in the National Occupational Classification (NOC).

The NOC is a system we use to classify jobs (occupations). Jobs are grouped based on the type of work a person does and the types of job duties. Find out more about the NOC.

Upcoming changes to the NOC

The NOC was updated in 2021, but these changes have not yet applied to immigration applications. On November 16, 2022, we’ll start using the NOC 2021 Training, Education, Experience and Requirements (TEER) categories for immigration programs. If you’re submitting a job offer on or after that date, you’ll need to use the NOC levels as shown below:

  • skill type 0 to be updated to TEER 0
  • skill level A to be updated to TEER 1
  • skill level B to be updated to TEER 2 and TEER 3

Show that you can’t fill the job locally

To be eligible to hire a skilled foreign worker through Express Entry, you’ll need to first show that your position cannot be filled by a Canadian citizen or permanent resident in Canada. To do this, follow the steps below:

  1. Find a Canadian or permanent resident to fill the job.
  2. Post your job ad on the Government of Canada’s Job Bank website.
  3. Advertise the job in 2 other places.

Step 2: Get an LMIA (if you need one)

If you can’t fill your job with a Canadian citizen or permanent resident, you’ll need to apply for an LMIA through Employment and Social Development Canada and Service Canada. If they agree there is a need for a foreign worker to fill the job, you will get a positive LMIA.

Once you have your positive LMIA, your job candidate must create an Express Entry profile or update the existing one in their account with the following:

  • employer name and address
  • start date
  • LMIA number (if this applies) and
  • NOC code related to the job

Most foreign workers can work temporarily in Canada while we process their application for permanent residence. To do this, they need to submit a separate temporary work permit application and processing fee. If they’ re already working here, they can keep doing so.

Employers may also need to pay the regular LMIA processing fee to support a temporary work permit application. If the worker is LMIA-exempt and needs to extend their employer-specific work permit, employers may have to pay the employer compliance fee. There are no fees for an LMIA supporting an application for permanent residence.

Find out if you need to apply for an LMIA.

Reasons you don’t need an LMIA

You do not need to get an LMIA if

  1. the candidate is already working temporarily in Canada in a NOC 0, A or B job for you or your company, and you
    • supported their work permit application with an LMIA and
    • now want to extend a 1 - year job offer to them after they get their permanent resident visa
  2. the candidate
    • is currently working temporarily in Canada
    • has a valid work permit for a NOC 0, A or B job with your or your company’s name on it and was exempt from an LMIA under
      • an international agreement (such as the North American Free Trade Agreement)
      • a federal-provincial agreement or
      • the “Canadian interests” category and
    • has 1 year of full-time work experience (or an equal amount of part-time work) for you or your company

Step 3: Make a valid job offer

A job offer (supported by an LMIA, if needed) has different requirements depending on which program the candidate is eligible for.

Upcoming changes to the NOC

The NOC was updated in 2021, but these changes have not yet applied to immigration applications. On November 16, 2022, we’ll start using the NOC 2021  Training, Education, Experience and Requirements (TEER) categories for immigration programs. If you’re submitting a job offer on or after that date, you’ll need to use the NOC levels as shown below:

  • skill type 0 to be updated to TEER 0
  • skill level A to be updated to TEER 1
  • skill level B to be updated to TEER 2 and TEER 3

For the Federal Skilled Worker Program, a valid job offer must be

  • for at least 1 year after we issue the permanent resident visa, non-seasonal and full time, and
  • skill type 0 (managerial occupations) or skill level A (professional occupations) or B (technical occupations and skilled trades) in the NOC

For the Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP), a valid job offer must be

  • for at least 1 year of full-time work
  • skill level B (technical occupations and skilled trades) in 1 of the eligible occupations, and
  • have wages and working conditions comparable to those offered to Canadians working in the occupation

For the FSTP, the job offer can be made by up to 2 employers.

For skilled trade jobs (those with codes that start with 72, 73, 82 and 92, as well as 632 and 633 in the 2016 NOC), the job offer can be made by up to 2 employers. The 1 year of work experience must be for the employer(s) making the job offer.

For the Canadian Experience Class, a job offer is not required, but applicants can get additional points under the Comprehensive Ranking System for a job offer.

In order for the candidate to get points, the offer must be

  • for at least 1 year after the permanent resident visa is issued, non-seasonal and full time, and
  • skill type 0 (managerial occupations) or skill level A (professional occupations) or B (technical occupations and skilled trades) in the NOC

If recruiting from within Canada

If you have a positive LMIA for an employee with a temporary work permit, and you want to make them a job offer, the LMIA may still be valid under Express Entry.

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