Canada is making it easier for international job seekers to get jobs in tech. Getting tech jobs for foreigners in Canada just got easier thanks to Canada’s Global Skills Strategy, a streamlined visa process to make it easy for Canadian tech companies to hire international talent. The new immigration pathway, called Global Talent Stream, allows Canadian companies to get a visa for an international candidate in as little as two weeks. With the Global Talent Stream, Canada signals that it is open to talented tech workers around the world.
If you are looking for Global Talent Stream companies, how to get job offer in Canada from outside the country, or just curious about jobs for foreigners in Canada, review the resources below.
Introduction to the Global Talent Stream initiative
While this video is long (and a bit boring), it’s worth watching to understand Global Talent Stream and how to get a job in Canada. Most importantly, the advice is coming directly from a Canadian immigration attorney. Plus it’s easier to listen than to read an immigration site.
If you are serious about working in Canada as a foreigner, then watch the video in full. They talk a lot about startups. In particular, they talk about the need for tech talent in startups working on artificial intelligence. Also, they describe the type of company most likely to have jobs for foreigners.
The Employer Perspective on Global Talent Stream
Pay attention to how employers talk about the specialized skill set. Canadian employers want job seekers who have strong tech skills. Similar to the US, employers are going to hire candidates who have the right combination of tech skills and experience. As a foreign job seeker, you must position yourself as a qualified candidate. With each application you must be clear on how you will help that company solve it’s business challenges.
Canada work permit eligibility
To get a work permit in Canada you have to be sponsored by a company. You also have to have an in-demand skill set. The engineering and IT jobs in demand in Canada are listed below. If you are an international student in a STEM subject, there is a good chance your skills are needed in Canadian tech companies.
Below is the government provided list of occupations in demand in Canada:
- Engineering managers
- Architecture and science managers
- Computer and information systems managers
- Computer engineers (except software engineers and designers)
- Mathematicians and statisticians* (Positions for actuaries or related occupations are excluded from this subset.)
- Information systems analysts and consultants
- Database analysts and data administrators
- Software engineers and designers
- Computer programmers and interactive media developers
- Web designers and developers
- Information systems testing technicians
- Producer, technical, creative and artistic director and project manager*
- Digital media designers*
*These positions have specific requirement. See details on the Canadian government website.
See how one software engineer got a job in Canada
Listen to this interview with a Brazilian software engineer about the Canadian work permit application process, interviewing with a Canadian tech company, rejection advice, and more. The video provides a good perspective of what to expect in your Canadian job search.
How to find tech jobs for foreigners in Canada
Vanhack has a jobboard for tech jobs in Canada for foreigners, Use it to find jobs at companies that offer a work permit for foreigners.
Other sites for a job search for tech jobs in Canada:
- IT Jobs in Canada: https://www.itjobs.ca/en/
- Startup Jobs in Canada: https://jobs.startupnorth.ca/
- Startup Jobs in Canada: https://angel.co/canada-startups/jobs
Curious how Canada’s tech scene compares to Silicon Valley? Read one perspective on making the switch from working in Silicon Valley to Montreal, Canada.
How to apply for a job in Canada from overseas
Similar to the US, you need to convince employers to sponsor your work permit in Canada. That means you need to understand their hiring process. You also need a Canadian CV, a network of people inside Canada, and skills that employers want. It takes a lot of work to get hired in another country.
There’s a really good thread on Quora that shows everything it takes to get hired in Canada as an immigrant. In the thread, the author covers the misconceptions about hiring in Canada. He says it best:
Understand one simple point here – the Canadian government does not give you jobs. Hiring managers that work in private non-government corporations give you jobs. And there is NO connection between what the hiring manager wants and the Canadian immigration system.
For more info, read the thread for articles on how to network in Canada, how to get a job before you land in Canada, and how to interview in Canada.
US OPT STEM + Global Talent Stream = A future combination?
One of the most difficult challenges in the international student job search is getting experience before you get a job. If you cross borders for work, employers expect you to come with some work experience. If you are an international student with no work experience this presents a classic dilemma. You can’t get experience without getting hired. You can’t get hired without experience.
It will be hard to get a job in Canada without the right work experience. For international students studying in the US, it’s possible that you could work for a while on STEM OPT extension to get valuable work experience. During that experience, you could start applying to jobs in Canada. This will give you work experience that Canadian employers want. More importantly, it might help you avoid the H-1B lottery.
Need more help with your international job search strategy? Watch our webinar on the How to Build an International Job Search Strategy.