Karl Simpson, who founded financial technology company Wave and is also a member of the Council of Canadian Innovators, has employed three high-skilled workers through the Global Skills Strategy program and plans to use it again in future.
But he has also warned that Canada technology companies need to be able to make long-term plans, which is not possible when the GTS pilot is due to expire in June 2019.
In an article in the Globe and Mail, Simpson urges the federal government to make the GTS a permanent part of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program.
“To design the Global Skills Strategy, the federal government actively consulted Canadian tech CEOs on how to make a program that would actually address the talent shortage,” Simpson writes. “The resulting program worked.
“For its next phase of this strategy, the government should continue to work hand-in-hand with innovators and make the pilot a permanent program for the foreseeable future.”
Simpson points out that in the time he has hire three foreign workers through the GTS, his company has hired nearly 100 Canadians for other positions. This, he says, is evidence of foreign workers helping to create jobs for Canadians, not take jobs from Canadians.
The Global Talent Stream features standard 10 working day processing, gives employers a timely, responsive and client-focused service via a referral or if hiring for a position included on the Global Talent Occupations List (see below).
The GTS features two categories:
- Category A: For employers who have been referred by a designated organization (listed below).
- Category B: For employers seeking to hire skilled workers from a new Global Talent Occupations List (also below).
Employers looking to hire under the program must first identify when they qualify for Category A (referral) or Category B (Occupations List), before developing a Labour Markets Benefits Plan.
The plan must show how hiring the skilled worker will have a lasting, positive impact on the Canadian labour market.
All you need to know about hiring under the Global Talent Stream, including from Quebec, is below:
Key Elements of The Global Talent Stream
- Two-week standard for processing Canada work permit applications (and Canada visa applications when applicable) for highly skilled talent.
- Dedicated service for companies looking to make significant job-creating investments in Canada.
- Companies applying for workers through the Global Talent Stream will have access to the new streamlined application process that will provide:
- Client-focused service to help guide eligible employers through the application process and the development of the Labour Market Benefits Plan, with a service standard of 10 business days.
- Eligibility for workers to have their work permit applications processed in 10 business days.
Global Talent Stream: Requirements
Category A: List of ESDC Designated Partners as of September 12, 2017
Under Global Talent Category A, employers must be referred by one of the following (subject to change)
- Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
- BC Tech Association
- Business Development Bank of Canada
- Communitech Corporation
- Council of Canadian Innovators
- Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario
- Global Affairs Canada’s Trade Commissioner Service
- ICT Manitoba (ICTAM)
- Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada – Accelerated Growth Service
- MaRS Discovery District
- National Research Council – Industrial Research Assistance Program
- Ontario Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration
- Ontario Ministry of Economic Growth and Development
- VENN Innovation
Quebec Designated Partners
- Investissement Quebec
- Montréal International
- Quebec International
Under Category A, foreign workers must possess a unique and specialized talent to qualify for a Canada work permit, defined as:
- Advanced knowledge of the industry.
- Highly paid position with a salary of usually $80,000 or more.
- Advanced degree in an area of specialization of interest to the employer
- Minimum of five years of experience in the field of specialized experience.
Category B: GTS Global Talent Occupations List
For Category B of the Global Talent Stream, employers must hire highly-skilled foreign workers to fill positions in occupations found on the following list:
|National Occupations Classification (NOC) code||Occupation||Minimum wage requirement (annual salary)||Minimum wage requirement (hourly rate)|
|213||Computer and information systems managers||prevailing wage||prevailing wage|
|2147||Computer engineers (except software engineers and designers)||prevailing wage||prevailing wage|
|2171||Information systems analysts and consultants||prevailing wage||prevailing wage|
|2172||Database analysts and data administrators||prevailing wage||prevailing wage|
|2173||Software engineers and designers||prevailing wage||prevailing wage|
|2174||Computer programmers and interactive media developers||prevailing wage||prevailing wage|
|2175||Web designers and developers||prevailing wage||prevailing wage|
|2241*||Electrical and electronics engineering technologists and technicians||$81,000 or higher prevailing wage||$38.94 or higher prevailing wage|
|2283*||Information systems testing technicians||$78,000 or higher prevailing wage||$37.50 or higher prevailing wage|
|Sub-set of 5131*||Position requires a minimum of five years of experience in the visual effects, video game or animation industries in one or a combination of the following roles: producer, technical director, creative director, artistic director or project manager, with experience in at least one or more of the following skills relevant to the visual effects, video game or animation industries: surfacing and look development; character or simulation rigging; matte painting; or technical pipeline development and application for visual effects, video games, or animation production.||$75,000 or higher prevailing wage||$36.06 or higher prevailing wage|
|Sub-set of 5241*||Digital Media and Design
Position requires a minimum of five years of experience in at least one of the following digital media design skills: 3D modeling, virtual reality, augmented reality, digital media animation, levels editing for digital media design, software editing for digital media design, pipeline software development or applications relevant for digital media design.
|$80,000 or higher prevailing wage||$38.46 or higher prevailing wage|
* Quebec sets its own minimum wage floors for applications from within Quebec. Consult the Quebec immigration website for more information
Non-refundable $1,000 to be paid by the employer.
Labour Market Benefits Plan
A key requirement for GTS is the Labour Market Benefits Plan (LMBP).
Developed with ESDC, it must show how hiring a foreign worker will help a company either create jobs for or transfer skills to Canadians. It also allows the ESDC to track a company’s progress.
The LMBP features mandatory and complementary benefits.
Under Category A, the mandatory benefit is creating jobs, whether directly or indirectly, for Canadian citizens and permanent residents.
Under Category B, the mandatory benefit is to increasing skills and training investments for Canadians and permanent residents.
The LMBP must also provide two complementary benefits, which cannot be the same as the mandatory benefit. These include, but are not limited to:
- Job creation,
- Investment in skills and training,
- Transferring knowledge,
- Enhanced company performance and
- Implementing best practices or policies as an employer for your workforce.
Global Talent Stream: General Requirements
Employers must provide evidence they are actively engaged in the business needing the temporary worker. The business must provide a good or service related to the job offer.
Employers new to TFWP must submit one document as proof. Returning employers are not required to re-submit documents but may be asked for additional proof.
Allowable documents include a Canadian business licence, legal incorporation forms, tax documents and attested documents. For a full list, click here.
Employers are encouraged to actively seek to hire Canadians and permanent residents before looking abroad for workers. A description of how this has been done will be requested.
Wages must match the prevailing amount paid to Canadians and permanent residents for the same position.
Job Duties and Working Conditions
Workers hired under TFWP must only do the job they were hired for. Foreign workers are covered by the same laws that protect Canadians and permanent residents. Exploitation of a foreign worker violates Canadian law.
Provincial and territorial laws cover standards such as:
- Hours of work (including overtime)
- Working conditions
- Termination of employment
Foreign workers must be covered by provincial or territorial workplace safety insurance where required by law. Any private plan must match or better the terms of the provincial or territorial plan.
A job can only require English or French when advertised. If other languages are essential, justification is required at the application stage.
For positions covered by a union, the foreign worker must be treated the same as Canadians and permanent residents also covered by that union, in terms of wages and terms and conditions.
Employers must comply with all general requirements of the TFWP.
Employers in Quebec
As of September 11, 2017, Quebec employers are able to take full advantage of the Global Talent Stream. The key difference is that Quebec employers must submit their application simultaneously to ESDC and the Quebec Ministry of Immigration, Diversity and Inclusion.
Interested employers: Kindly contact us here to receive further information.
Interested candidates: Find out whether you qualify to Canada by completing our free on-line evaluation. We will provide you with our evaluation within 1-2 business days.
Read more news about Canada Immigration by clicking here.