If you work in recruitment or talent acquisition for a Canadian company, you probably know how competitive it can be to fill certain roles. Because of a shrinking supply of talent and increasing salary expectations, more companies are looking abroad to find great talent and bring them to Canada using some of the friendly immigration programs we have.
But sometimes the immigration process can seem daunting, especially if there are long processing times involved.
Luckily there are options that allow you to skip the step of applying for a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) – a huge benefit. While LMIA’s can vary depending on the occupation you’re trying to sponsor, they can be time-consuming and sometimes require proof of recruitment within Canada. Skipping this step is a huge time saver in preparation and also processing times!
Here are some great countries to recruit from to make the immigration process as quick and easy as possible:
Canada, the USA and Mexico have maintained strong relationships through treaties that include, among other things, the ability to move foreign talent between countries relatively easily. Through the Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA), previously known as NAFTA, Canadian companies can sponsor – without needing an LMIA – those who hold a US or Mexican passport if they fall under a certain “professional” category and have the education background to support it.
The list of professionals that are eligible is long – there’s a total of 63 titles – and includes:
As just a few examples. For the full list of professionals, check out the government website here and search for “3.8 Appendix 2 of CUSMA – Professionals (amended)”
Canada has treaties with countries other than the US and Mexico, some of which are almost the exact same. Chile is one example that uses nearly an identical list to the one found above in CUSMA, where most of the titles are the exact same, but there are some additional options that can be used to prove the minimum education or certification requirements.
And just like with CUSMA, a Chilean passport holder who meets the professional requirements would be LMIA-exempt, making it much quicker to get them a work permit!
To view the list of professions and their respective requirements, check out the government website here and search for the list under “Appendix K-03.IV.1”
Unlike the first few countries on our list, Canada’s treaties with Peru and Colombia are a bit different in that they use a “negative list”, meaning they list the professionals that do not qualify under the treaty.
Just like the previous 2 treaties, hiring someone with a Peruvian or Colombian passport who does meet the requirements as a professional will be LMIA-exempt.
To see the full list for Peru and Colombia, head to the government website here and search for “Professionals and Technicians (see section 3.2)”.
Canada has a treaty with Korea that is somewhat similar, but a bit different, from CUSMA. Similarly, it allows for LMIA-exempt work permits and uses a positive list to show which professionals are eligible.
However, the list of professionals is broken into two categories: contract service suppliers and independent professionals. Contract service suppliers come to perform services in Canada under a pre-arranged contract with a foreign company, while independent professionals are self-employed and enter Canada to provide a service directly to your company.
You can find the full list of eligible professionals on the government website here by searching for “Appendix 12-A-2: Listed Professionals”.
Lastly, we wanted to highlight another great option to hire foreign talent without the need of an LMIA. Immigration Canada created the Francophone Mobility program to make it easy for Canadian companies to bring in foreign talent that can already speak french.
The requirements include:
While there’s no requirement that the foreign worker use french on the job, it must be clear that the “foreign national’s habitual language of daily use is French”. So even if there’s no french required at your company, targeting french speakers can be a great way to target foreign talent and bring them here quickly.
We know how important it is to find and bring great talent to your Canadian offices, so we hope this list helps you target some promising countries to fill your talent needs. Of course, if you need help navigating the immigration process, make sure to fill out the form on our website here to chat with us – our immigration platform makes the process even easier and quicker!