Hiring Temporary Foreign Workers: Everything You Need to Know

Temporary Foreign workers

Hiring Temporary Foreign Workers: Everything You Need to Know

The Government of Canada allows organizations to hire foreign nationals under the Temporary Foreign Workers Program (TFWP). To address the issue of skill and workforce shortages among small companies, employers seek the services of temporary workers. They do this as it provides an avenue for them to solve their labour requirements.

The Federal Department of Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC), as well as the Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC), play a major role in deciding if a candidate is eligible for a work permit. They will determine if hiring a temporary worker will support economic growth in Canada. In this blog, we go over some of the main factors you, as an employer, need to know before hiring temporary foreign workers.

1. The employer decides if a Positive Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) from ESDC is required

The Labour Market Impact Assessment is a confirmation service handled by the Canadian Government. Foreign workers are required to qualify for this before they are eligible to be hired. In most cases an LMIA is required. However, there are some cases in which it is not needed due to special pilot programs or International agreements that exist.

The types of jobs that do not require an LMIA are ones considered to be in the best interest of Canada. Other factors include jobs that are in an international trade accord. They can also be part of an accord between the federal government and a territorial/provincial government. A positive assessment will be provided when hiring a foreign worker does not have any negative impact on the Canadian labour market.

2. If an LMIA is required, an employer can apply for it from the ESDC

Employment and Social Development Canada will make its decision based on multiple factors. The ESDC will consider if the job offer is genuine. It also depends on if the foreign worker will fill a labour shortage in the province. The ESDC considers if the wages and working conditions are compatible with those offered to Canadians working in the same occupation as well. When an employer applies for an LMIA, the ESDC will also check if:

Hiring Temporary Foreign workers
  • The hiring of temporary foreign workers will not affect a labour dispute of the employment of a Canadian citizen involved in such a dispute.
  • The employer was thorough in their hiring and training process for the job (in this case the employer will need proof of recruitment efforts).
  • The recruitment of a temporary foreign worker will create new opportunities for Canadian citizens or help retain jobs.
  • The foreign workers will transfer their knowledge and skills to Canadians.

“Acquiring the right talent is the most important key to growth. Hiring was – and still is – the most important think we do.” – Marc Bennioff, Chairman and co-CEO of Salesforce

Checking Temporary Foreign workers eligibility

3. The employer has to select and hire a temporary foreign worker according to their requirement

The final decision of hiring temporary foreign workers rests solely in the hands of an employer. They have to recruit and hire a suitable foreign worker who will fit the job requirement. The employer should provide a job offer that meets the prevailing wage rates and labour standards. Once the ESDC provides a positive LMIA and approves the job offer, the employer can send it to the foreign worker. They will also send a letter of employment so that the candidate may apply for a work permit.

4. The temporary foreign worker has to apply to the Federal government for a work permit

After receiving the positive LMIA from the employer, the foreign worker has to apply for a work permit to legally work in Canada. Most of the time the worker needs to apply for a permit from outside Canada at a visa office in their own country. In some cases, the temporary workers can apply for a work permit at a Canadian port of entry. However, this only applies if they already have the necessary documents. 

The employer needs to ensure the temporary foreign workers have the right documentation to enter Canada. This may include a visitor’s visa or an Electronic Traveller’s authorization (eTA). When applying for a work permit a temporary worker needs to also check if a temporary visa is required. A visa officer will process the worker’s application for it along with the work permit. So there you have it, these are some of the main concepts and guidelines that you need to keep in mind when hiring from outside of Canada.

Disclaimer: Please note that these guidelines and regulations are only the recent updates as of March 2022, and may change at a later date. Keep this in mind going forward and be sure to keep yourself apprised of the latest developments in guidelines and rules issued by the Canadian government before the worker immigrates.

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Canadian Immigration Guidelines 2022: An Overview for Temporary Foreign Workers

Canadian Immigration Guidelines

Canadian Immigration Guidelines 2022: An Overview for Temporary Foreign Workers

As of 2022 January, with the emergence of new Covid-19 variants, many countries, including Canada, have revised their immigration policies and travel guidelines. At the beginning of the year, the Canadian government revised many of its policies which have to be strictly adhered to if one wishes to travel to the country. In this blog, we talk about these Canadian immigration guidelines that you, as a temporary foreign worker, should keep in mind before booking your tickets.

Also, please note that these guidelines and regulations are only the recent updates as of March 2022, and may change at a later date. So, keep this in mind going forward and be sure to keep yourself apprised of the latest developments in guidelines and rules issued by the Canadian government before you emigrate.

A Recap of the Latest Immigration Initiatives for 2022

Before we get into the who and what of it all, let’s do a quick recap of what the Canadian government has recently laid out. According to a news report by the CIC Times, Canada plans to welcome around 432,000 immigrants in 2022. This is taking place under the Immigration Levels Plan 2022-2024.

The plan, as reported by the CIC Times, cited Immigration Minister Sean Fraser as saying that the plan focuses on recruiting qualified people who will contribute to the Canadian economy. He was quoted as stating that it was to address the labour deficit. The news outlet also cited that around 56% of new immigrants this year would enter through economic class channels. This includes Express Entry, the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP), as well as the Temporary to Permanent Residence (TR2PR) stream.

Canadian Immigration Guidelines: Who Can Travel to Canada?

To enter Canada, you need to be fully vaccinated for one. If not, there is the whole matter of having to undergo quarantine. If you are an exempt traveller, then you might not need to be fully vaccinated, but still, need to adhere to certain guidelines. Keep in mind that regardless of if you are an essential traveller or non-essential traveller you still need to be vaccinated.

Travelling under Canadian Immigration Guidelines

Here are the categories of travellers who were previously allowed to cross into Canada even if they are not vaccinated:

  • Foreign Students who are 18 years of age or older.
  • Athletes
  • Work permit holders as well as temporary foreign workers who are employed in the agriculture and food processing field.
  • Family members of Canadian citizens.
  • Permanent residents
  • Those passing through Canada to go to another country
  • Foreign nationals who hold a valid Confirmation of Permanent Residence (COPR)
  • Those travelling on humanitarian grounds
  • Maine crew, including commercial fishing vessels
  • Diplomats and family members
  • As well as certain French citizens

Revised Canadian Immigration Guidelines

Now, as of January 2022, some of these categories were revised. Certain groups of travellers who were previously allowed to travel without vaccination, now have to get both doses before entering the country. According to the latest Canadian immigration guidelines, family reunification travellers, International students, athletes, essential service providers and temporary foreign workers are required to be vaccinated.

“Pleasure in the job puts perfection in the work. –  Aristotle, Greek Philosopher

The Temporary Foreign Worker Program

As a temporary foreign worker, you can immigrate to Canada under the Temporary Foreign Worker Program. This allows you a variety of options given that your employer adheres to the Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) guidelines and the recent changes that the program underwent due to Covid-19.

However, before we get into the recent changes, you should know your options. As a temp worker coming into Canada, you also have many paths you can opt for. This includes the likes of the Express Entry system or the Global Talent Stream. The former is for the hiring of skilled foreign workers to support their permanent residency through the economic immigration program. The latter is to hire select talent or in-demand workers in specific ICT (Information and Communication Technology) or STEM (Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) jobs.

Canadian immigration guidelines also state that you could gain entry if you are looking for a temp job in the fields of academics, agriculture (as we mentioned above), and caregiving. Now, if you are coming for work in the province of Quebec, well that’s a whole different story as the province has a set of unique guidelines in and of itself.

Covid-19 and Canadian Immigration Guidelines

Canadian Immigration Guidelines: Covid-19 Measures to Keep in Mind

Now, let’s get down to some of the newer guidelines and the changes done to the TFWP. With the country combating the covid-19 levels, one of the most important things you need to adhere to is the public health measures that are in place. You should follow all the guidelines regardless of your vaccination status. Secondly, before you make your travel arrangements, you need to verify that the position you applied for is still available with your employer or the Ministry of Labour (if you are with the Seasonal Agricultural Worker Program [SAWP]).

You also need to keep a close eye on the email that you receive from the IRCC (Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada) for whatever else they advise. Next, with the enhanced border measures that were put in place, you will be subjected to testing and quarantine (if need be) upon arrival. For this part of the process, you need to use the ‘ArriveCAN’ app to provide mandatory travel and quarantine information after your entry. Be sure to review Canada’s pre-entry testing requirements though.

“It always seems impossible until it’s done. – Nelson Mandela, Former President of South Africa

What to Know for Your Stay in Canada

There are a few things you need to know after you arrive in the country. One of the first things is your rights as a temporary foreign worker. This includes a wide variety of subject areas including management of workplace abuse to help and support organizations. Be sure to read up on that. 

Along the same lines, you should keep in mind that your employer legally cannot end your contract if you are sick with Covid-19. You might also be eligible for Covid-19 benefits and services if you miss work as a result. There is also a possibility of paid or unpaid sick leave depending on the terms of your employment contract, as well as the federal, provincial or territorial employment standards.

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