If you’re interested in moving to Canada as a tech worker, we have some good news for you. Canada is in dire need of tech workers, such as software developers, info systems analysts and computer programmers – and is expecting a shortage of 216,000 tech workers by 2021.
Because of this, Immigration Canada has created programs specifically targeting tech workers, with one of them being Express Entry. Express Entry is a points-based, application for skilled workers looking to come to Canada as permanent residents that can be done entirely online.
1. The basics of Express Entry
Started in 2015, the program provides skilled workers with permanent residence status in Canada in as little as six months for 80% of applicants.
Permanent residence means you can live anywhere in Canada, work for any company you like, have access to healthcare and education, and ultimately get citizenship (if you desire). You can also include your spouse and children in your application.
The process requires that you take an English or French exam, have any non-Canadian degrees assessed, take a medical exam, and provide police background checks, proof of work experience and other documents to ensure that you meet the necessary requirements.
2. What are the costs associated with Express Entry?
In terms of costs, the government fee to apply is $1,040 CAD for you, an additional $1,040 CAD if you include a spouse, and $150 CAD per child. You will also incur additional expenses, such as fees for biometrics, medical exams, language exams, translation of documents (if not in English or French), and a few others that may apply.
You will also need to prove that you have enough funds to settle in Canada (~$12,600 CAD if applying alone, more if you include spouse and/or children).
3. How do I know if I’m eligible?
There are two things you’ll need in order to decide if Express Entry is right for you – eligibility and your Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score. As a tech worker, to be eligible you’ll need:
• One year of continuous paid work experience in a tech role
• A minimum score in an English or French exam
• High school degree or higher
If you are eligible, you then need to make sure you have a high enough CRS score. This is a score every potential applicant gets based on a variety of factors, including age, education, language skills, and work experience.
Immigration Canada invites applicants to apply based on their score, so it’s important to understand your score to have a good idea of whether Express Entry is a good option for you. Calculating your CRS score can be a difficult process, so we put together a free calculator to help you determine your score, help raise your score if it isn’t high enough and also a free guide to help prepare for the english language exam.