Newcomers and Immigrants Finding Employment in Canada

For those who have newly arrived to Canada, finding suitable employment can definitely be challenging. Some of the challenges that arise when it comes to finding employment for newcomers and immigrants include, cultural assimilation (e.g., language barrier, social customs), having credentials recognized, and not having relevant work experience with organizations operating in Canada.

Many organizations are in place, and many resources are available, when it comes to helping newcomers and immigrants help make the transition from their foreign workforces into the Canadian workforce. Initiatives such as Transition to Employment Programs at Polycultural Immigrant & Community Services, based in Toronto, Ontario, provide workshops, coaching and mentoring and work sessions to help build the necessary knowledge, skills and abilities to succeed in the Canadian workforce. The key is to work with newcomers and immigrants and their existing workforce knowledge and enhancing that knowledge by tailoring it to the Canadian work experience.

Well-qualified newcomers and immigrants, with previous employment experience and/or academic credentials from foreign lands, have difficulty getting their qualifications recognized in the Canadian workforce. A primary reason for why Employers may be more inclined to hire someone with Canadian academic credentials, or work experience, is because of their familiarity with Canadian workplace culture, the organizational framework, and standards and expectations. Ways that newcomers or immigrants can help overcome this obstacle include, becoming more fluent in the English language, better understanding the social dynamic in Canadian workplace settings, further education and skill acquisition in Canada, and analysis of their current knowledge and skill set and presenting potential employers with how they could contribute to the success of their organization (e.g., specialized resume or cover letter).

Newcomers and immigrants are encouraged to take advantage of local employment support agencies that cater to them. These agencies offer a wide array of services, ranging from help getting settled as a newcomer, to advanced English classes, to resume help and interview preparation.

For cases where skilled newcomers and immigrants continue to have issues finding meaningful employment, there are bridging programs and resources, such as the non-profit organization, Allies, that has established a National Mentoring initiative that help bridge the connection between skilled newcomers and immigrants and established Canadian organizations.

It is also important to note that many newcomers and immigrants are more likely to find suitable employment by expanding their network. By getting out there and meeting different people within the relevant sector that interests them, these individuals coming to Canada are now immersed in a network which could potentially lead to a number of employment opportunities. Networking is a means of taking initiative and self-managing the employment search. Candidates will be able to form important relationships within their industry, keeping up-to-date with the trends within the field, gain further insight on how to find meaningful employment, and ways on accelerating career growth and achieving success in the Canadian workforce.

Finding suitable employment in Canada can be difficult, however, with effective planning and efficient implementation, employment objectives can be more easily achieved.


If you are a newcomer looking to find work in Canada, head over to
If you are an employer looking to hire a Newcomer to Canada, you should look at

Finally, take a look at our other employment resources below.