Finding a job in Canada: Research your profession

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The nature of a profession can vary tremendously across borders. Being aware of such differences can increase your chances of finding a suitable job. In working with Canadian employers and immigrants, I have learned that there are four areas of research that newcomer job-seekers should undertake before coming to Canada.

Is your profession licensed or regulated in Canada?

If you practice a profession that is licensed or regulated in Canada, you will need to take extra steps to continue in your field. Licensed and regulated professions have unique requirements that often vary across provinces. You may need to have your credentials assessed, apply to a licensing or regulatory body, or even return to school for Canadian courses.

What is your job called in Canada?

This seems fairly straightforward, but I will never forget the case of the skilled immigrant professional who struggled for months trying to find a job as a ‘nutritional engineer,’ only to discover that he was considered a ‘food scientist’ here in Canada. Knowing the proper term in Canada for your profession will help you find the right opportunities. Verify how your career is labelled in Canada by searching on job websites such as Workopolis or Charity Village. If your current job title doesn’t appear after multiple searches, perhaps your job title is different, or may not exist in Canada.

What qualifications are required for your job in Canada?

The delegation of work in your field in Canada may be different, and there may be particular skills that you need to learn in order to be considered qualified for a particular job in Canada. Look closely at postings for jobs that interest you: Do you have all of the required qualifications? If you are only missing a few skills or technical abilities is it possible to obtain them before arriving?

Should you have your credentials assessed?

If you are immigrating to Canada as a Principal Applicant in the Federal Skilled Worker category, it is now required that you have your educational credentials assessed by a designated organization such as World Education Services or the Comparative Education Service at the University of Toronto. If you aren’t coming as a Federal Skilled Worker it may still be a good idea to have your credentials assessed. Credential assessment helps Canadian employers to understand the value of your education in Canadian terms.

Every successful job-search starts with good research and familiarity with the job-market. If you have questions about this article, or would like support in conducting research on your chosen career in Canada, please get in touch – I would be happy to help. My Canada Plan is pleased to provide reliable, customized employment research and coaching.

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