Canada and the Canadian job market provide many opportunities to foreign nationals eager to come to Canada to live and work.
Canada has a thriving and vibrant economy with plenty of room for growth and many opportunities for residents. At this time, employment opportunities are abundant as many cities and provinces in Canada have labour shortages in important sectors and industries. Canadian employers are eager to hire qualified and responsible professionals.
In particular, those with training in the hospitality, healthcare industry, IT, financial sector, engineering, managerial profiles etc are highly sought after. Canadian employers are also in need of trades people with skills such as carpentry, electrical expertise, and plumbing. Workers from abroad (whether temporary or permanent) in these high-demand occupations have been helping Canadian employers staff their growing businesses.
Canada has a diverse economy and a high standard of living so it's no surprise that graduates are attracted to the country when starting their careers In your leasure time you'll be able to take advantage of the country's beautiful scenery, from the mountains of British Columbia to the lakes of Ontario and not forgetting Niagara Falls on the boarder of Ontario and New York.
Job market in Canada
Canada is one of the richest nations in the world due in part to the country's on-going trade agreements with the USA and Mexico.
Major industries in Canada include:
• manufacturing including aerospace technology, cars, clothing, food and paper and wood products;
• service industries such as banking, construction, education, healthcare, retail, transport and tourism;
• natural resources like agriculture, forestry, energy and mining.
Unsurprisingly Canada is the world's largest producer of maple syrup, with the majority of the world's supply being produced in Quebec.
While foreign workers are actively sought to grow the national workforce, the graduate labour market remains competitive so to ensure success in your job search you'll need to make sure that you have the right combination of skills and experience.
According to the Labour Force Survey July 2015, by Statistics Canada, the overall unemployment rate stands at 6.8%. Employment in Quebec and Nova Scotia has risen compared with the previous 12 months, while in Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Prince Edward Island employment has declined. Employment in Ontario remains largely unchanged.
Thriving metropolitan areas in the country include:
The survey showed an increase of workers in the professional, scientific and technical services and public administration while it reported a decrease in insurance and finance.
Jobs are advertised online and in newspapers. Networking is also a useful way to find out about vacancies in Canada. Start your Canadian job search at:
• Jobs - Canada
• Monster - Canada
• Working in Canada - Job Search
Teaching in Canada
If you're proficient in English, have a degree and some practical teaching experience you could teach English as a second language. As English is one of Canada's official languages demand for English teachers is relatively low, however, there are jobs available but expect competition for positions to be fierce.
A useful network for this kind of work is the TESL Canada Federation. There are also opportunities with i-to-i teach English in Canada.
Internships and work experience in Canada
Completing an internship or work placement can be an excellent way to find a permanent role and prove your skills to potential employers. To qualify for work experience you will need to secure the relevant work permit and visa (see Canadian visas and immigration).
When searching for an internship helpful websites include:
• AIESEC UK - an organisation present in 110 countries, including Canada. Take part in its GoGlobal programme for placements between six to 18 months in sectors such as finance, IT, marketing and teaching;
• BUNAC's Work Canada - aimed at British passport holders aged 18 to 30. You can work in Canada for up to two years.
International companies may also offer internships, check the websites of organisations that you'd like to work for.
Volunteering in Canada
Opportunities are available in Canada but if you're heading over to the country to give your time to a cause you'll need to make sure you have the appropriate visa.
The national body for volunteering is Volunteer Canada, where you can search for projects and learn about the importance of volunteering.
Canada is a bilingual country with two official languages (English and French) and while knowledge of both languages isn't essential, it will certainly give you an edge in your job search.
While French is more widely spoken in the Quebec province, you can still expect to hear both languages on a regular basis no matter where you live or work. Certain employers may require you to prove your proficiency in either English or French depending on the job you've applied for.
Standard hours of work are eight a day or 40 a week, Monday to Friday. The maximum amount of hours you can work in a week is usually 48. After completing one year of employment you are entitled to a minimum of two weeks annual leave and nine paid 'general holidays' including:
• New Years day;
• Good Friday;
• Victoria day;
• Canada day;
• Labour day;
• Remembrance day;
• Christmas day;
• Boxing day.
Minimum wages are set by each province or territory. For more information on working conditions see the Government of Canada - Federal Labour Standards. Canada has long been a prime destination for immigration and with good reason. A thriving economy, stunning scenery and fascinating history are just some of the reasons that so many foreigners make the move to start new lives in this vast and unique country.
A significant part of making the move to any new country is adapting to the changes in your working life. It’s important to be aware of what to expect and what is likely to be expected of you.
Canadian working culture
A work ethic dictating that the way to achieve success is by your own doing ensures that Canadians are a hardworking people. You will find that in many parts of Canada and in many industry sectors, employees will work long hours and in some cases, will work on more days than the normal Monday to Friday stretch.
‘Equal opportunities’ in Canada works well to remove, to a greater degree, any favouritism that might usually occur in the workplace. In general, workers in Canada have a strong sense of ‘doing the right thing’; a trait that most certainly contributes to Canada being recognized as of the most business-friendly countries in the world. Another contributor is one of the lowest levels of corruption that the country boasts.
Canadians, on the whole, enjoy a high level of job satisfaction. Business culture is such that workers take a lot of pride in their work and accomplishments. Most are able to maintain a healthy work/life balance, ensuring that free time is well spent with friends and family.
Laws pertaining to labour and employment are divided between both the federal and provincial governments. Federal authority concerns interprovincial economic sectors, whilst everything else, such as the service, health and education industries is regulated provincially.
Thirty per cent of the workforce in Canada in unionized, with Quebec leading as the most unionized of the provinces. What is interesting to note with regard to the way unions are run in Canada, is the rather unique ‘delay of work stoppage’ rule in instances where a potential strike may occur. This rule dictates that before the strike can be called, certain steps must be completed. In effect, what this does is avoid a lot of industrial action as both parties are given a cooling off period before coming to an agreement.
Canadians tend to be jovial, but quite conservative at work. Brash clothing or an overly loud and aggressive communication style will not go over well. Canadians generally aim to dress and act appropriate to the industry they are in. If you are going to err on the side of caution, dressing conservatively is a good idea.
Canadians are good timekeepers so taking care not to be late to work or to meetings is crucial for ensuring a harmonious working life. If you are running late, you are expected to notify all relevant parties.
Canadian Business Culture
Canadians are overall a polite people, and slightly more reserved than their southern neighbours. The values of the country are largely respect, peace and good government. Make sure you do not offend a business colleague or dash your chances of securing a deal by learning the basics of Canadian etiquette. It is a good idea to treat all persons with courtesy and respect, especially people with authority. However, you should not act too humble.
Greetings and addresses are generally formal in meetings. It is normal to shake hands (both men and women) at the start and end of a meeting and to use titles like Mr. and Ms. unless otherwise asked.
Being a bilingual country, it is prudent to enquire as to what language a meeting will be conducted in, regardless of the ‘lingua franca’ of the corporate world being English. Respect for the French-speaking contingent is expected and appreciated. Indeed, it is worth having French versions of any printed materials made. If you are a non-French speaker, it is a nice gesture to learn a word or two of French for the beginnings of meetings to ensure a relaxed atmosphere.
The warm and welcoming nature of the Canadian people extends the business world, making adapting to Canadian working life a relatively easy and enjoyable experience.
• A firm handshake is the usual contact when first meeting a business associate. Both men and women greet with a handshake, although women may acknowledge you with a nod of the head rather than a handshake.
• Shaking hands is also common for first meetings in social situations. Men and women often embrace and kiss lightly on the cheek when meeting if they are related or good friends. Men may formally embrace old friends or family.
• In Quebec, friends or acquaintances will kiss on both cheeks when meeting and leaving. This happens between female friends and between men and women, but not between male friends.
• In informal settings, such as a party or bar, most young people will simply exchange greetings such as "Hi!" or "How are you?"
• Introduce people in business based on rank not gender.
• In Canada, a person's authority is related to his or her position and responsibility. Women occupy the same range of positions as men and have the same kinds of authority. People do not have authority just because of their name, status, social class or sex.
Behaviour to consider for business transactions and life in general:
• Eye contact is important when conducting business and should be held while speaking to someone, but be careful not to stare. Lack of direct eye contact signifies boredom or disinterest.
• There is little casual touching during conversation and most people will stand approximately half a metre apart when speaking.
• People stand in line when waiting for the bus, to buy tickets, at the store or bank. It is considered very rude to jump the line or go ahead of someone who was there before you.
• Smoking is not allowed in offices, most restaurants, and even bars (with the exception of Quebec). When out in a public space, ask your companion before lighting up. If visiting people in their home, always ask for permission to smoke.
• Be on time. Canadians will not wait more than 10 to 15 minutes for someone who has arranged to meet them for business. Your supervisors and co-workers will be angry if you are always late for work. For social invitations, people expect that you will arrive within approximately half an hour of the stated time. If you are going to be late, phone and advise the person expecting you.
• People usually set up meetings or arrange visits. It is not common to just arrive without an invitation.
• Be approachable and accessible. Return phone calls and be polite and friendly in hallways.
• Honour commitments. Do what you say you will do.
Customs and Protocol
Canadian businesspeople are conservative in manner, speech, and dress. Business customs are similar to those in the U.S. or the U.K., but etiquette is very important. Excessive body contact, gestures in greeting or loud conversation generally are frowned upon.
To ease the way into Canadian favour, always be punctual for meetings and appointments; use titles in all correspondence; and take letters of introduction when meeting someone for the first time.
Businesspeople negotiating with Canadians should be well informed and knowledgeable about the details of their proposals. Thoroughness is appreciated and directness is also valued. Evasive answers are not viewed positively by Canadians.
It is important for all businesspeople to avoid exaggerating the strengths of their company or the benefits of their product.
Women have earned high regard in business and government in Canada. While some sexism and subtle barriers may still exist, women are found in powerful positions in all walks of life.
Visiting female executives can expect to be taken seriously. Likewise, Canadian women receive respect from their Canadian male colleagues, and will expect the same from foreigners.
Career Prospects in 2017
2017 has a lot of big changes on the horizon. From experiencing the after-effects of major world events like Brexit and the American election, to a growing dependence on technology, to a shift towards a Millennial-dominated workforce, there are a lot of factors driving change in Canadian workplaces. We've compiled data, crunched numbers, and surveyed employers from coast to coast to determine trends in 8 key sectors. Find out what the hottest careers of 2017 will be in your industry!
Tech is one of the hottest sectors in Canada. With talent in demand in established and emerging fields including DevOps, mobile, social media, networking, security and a variety of other tech fields, 2017 is a great time to be in the technology field.
No matter which industry or field you look at, office workers are needed to manage and organize administrative tasks like data entry, basic accounting and other activities essential to business success. If you have strong clerical skills, you can count on being employable in 2017.
Industrial workers are the backbone of Canada's strong manufacturing industry. After a somewhat slow 2016, the manufacturing industry is rebounding in a big way in 2017. With Canada's oil and gas sectors looking strong for 2017, you can expect to see a surge in manufacturing jobs.
Logistics experts ensure the smooth transition of goods from coast to coast. Whether you're shipping goods out of a factory, driving a forklift in a warehouse, or receiving goods at a retail store, you play a key role in ensuring that products and services connect with the people who purchase them.
From designing new buildings and infrastructure, to streamlining manufacturing processes, engineers spearhead Canadian innovation. With the manufacturing industry rebounding and a variety of government-sanctioned construction projects on the horizon in 2017, the engineering industry is looking strong.
Finance and accounting professionals ensure Canadian companies make smart investments, increase profitability and contribute to overall business success. With the Canadian economy slowly recovering from the 2016 downturn, their guidance and affinity for numbers will play a key role in business growth in 2017
Did you know the average Fortune 500 company spends approximately 10.2% of their budget on marketing? Sales and marketing professionals ensure these funds are spent wisely and lead to business growth. With the increasing digitization of marketing, expect to see digital marketing roles on the rise in 2017.
Human resources professionals are essential to a strong Canadian job market. They ensure companies have access to the skilled talent they need to grow and meet business goals. With the Canadian economy on the upswing in 2017, HR professionals will play an important role in connecting skilled job seekers with employers as businesses expand. The Highest Paying In-Demand Jobs in Canada for 2017
Primary Production Managers
According to the Canadian Occupational Projection System (COPS), production management jobs have the highest projected growth rate for 2011-2020, at 3.02%. With about 70% of Canada’s manufacturing output coming from Ontario and Quebec, these are the two best provinces in which to start your job search.
Miners, Oil and Gas Drillers
There is still a big demand for skilled miners, oil and gas drillers and similar occupations. While these jobs are found in most provinces, they’re mainly concentrated in Alberta as well as Saskatchewan, Manitoba and British Columbia.
Physicians and Dentists
Health care is still a hot industry and as Canada’s population ages, opportunities for doctors and dentists are increasing. Most of these jobs are found in the public sector.
Registered nurses are among those most in demand in the health care field. As with most health care jobs, the public sector is the largest employer of registered nurses.
Mental Health and Social Services Professionals
Mental health and social services professionals are needed to look after the mental and social well-being of all who live in Canada. These fields are growing as societal pressures increase. Most jobs are found in the public sector.
HR as an industry is still going strong as younger people enter the workforce. Recruiters are in demand because several industries experience labour shortages and need someone who can help them find talented workers
A product manager oversees the development and some marketing of a product. The role of the product manager varies widely from company to company. Team-building and leadership skills are very important as is a business and/or marketing degree.
According to Monster.com, IT managers maintain information technology strategies by managing staff and researching and implementing technological solutions. They're the technological gurus in any business. At minimum you'll need a degree in a computer field.
Skilled analytics managers are highly sought after. Like many data focused jobs, the analytics manager uses data as intelligence. You'll need solid business skills for this job. An educational background in math and technology is also very important. The demand for legal experts and lawyers continues to grow. Opportunities are quiet varied, so a good lawyer can often find work in a sector of interest. Salaries are high, but don't forget that you have to get a law degree first.
A solution architect is one of those hard to understand tech jobs. TechTarget describes it this way: "The solutions architect leverages all the tools and design principles delivered by enterprise and SOA (service-oriented architecture) architects to make each solution a success within the larger framework."
Here's a job that's easy to understand. A finance manager looks after a company's financial health. They produce financial reports, direct investment and develop long-term goals. You'll need a business degree.
Software Development Manager
As the title says, the software development manager oversees the development of software. They manage projects from concept to completion. Because they work with a number of people in different departments, excellent communication skills are a must. Experience in project management and a computer science degree are required.
"Great software architects are designers and diplomats," says CNN. "They create innovative and valuable programs, but they also translate highly technical plans into a vision" that everyone can understand. They're the link between management and the tech folks.
As the population ages, the demand for medical professionals will keep growing. That's good news if you're just starting med school, as there will be plenty of jobs when you graduate.
This is another growing area in the health care field. Pharmacists understand how drugs work, their side effects and advise patients on their use.
Tax managers deal with tax preparation and compliance as well as offering planning ideas. An accounting degree and in-depth tax courses are critical for this position, as are strong communication skills.
The health sector is growing and demand is increasing for many health-related jobs. The role of physician assistant is pretty self-explanatory. Tasks include obtaining medical histories, assisting in diagnosing ailments and interpreting tests. In Canada, PAs may also perform examinations and council on preventative care. There are four physician assistant education programs in Canada.
Supply Chain Manager
In many ways, they're the glue that holds a company together. O-Net Online has a laundry list of tasks that supply chain managers perform: direct or coordinate production, purchasing, warehousing and distribution plus forecast costs and limit them, and constantly be on the lookout for ways to streamline systems.
A data scientist sifts through huge amounts of data to uncover the insights and knowledge contained therein. They use this data to respond to business challenges a company may face.
Security engineers are tasked with keeping computer systems safe and secure. Payscale.com says security engineers must constantly find new ways to stop hackers. Knowledge is key in this job and it all starts with a degree in computer science or cyber security.
Quality Assurance Manager
Quality assurance managers oversee the consistent quality of production by monitoring and evaluating manufacturing processes. They may also create documentation and manage staff.
Computer Hardware Engineer
If you like to tinker, this job may be right up your alley. Computer hardware designers create components and systems for use in all areas of computer technology. A bachelor's degree is required in most cases.
A marketing manager takes care of a company's marketing and advertising. This could be for the company's products or the company itself. PayScale.com says that in large companies, there many be several marketing managers, each assigned to a different product or line.
This is one of the many tech-based jobs that are on the list. Database administrators take care of storing and organizing data using special software. Duties include planning, monitoring and backing-up data. A degree in computer science is helpful.