Are you a tech worker in the U.S. looking for greener pastures abroad?
If so, Canada may be an option worth considering!
According to CompTIA’s “State of the Tech Workforce Canada” report, the number of net tech employment in Canada reached an estimated 1.23 million workers at the end of 2021—a nearly nine percent increase from 2019. This figure is projected to grow by 1.5% by the end of 2022, indicating that now is a great time for tech professionals to migrate north into the Great White North!
So what makes Canada such an attractive option for U.S.-based tech workers?
Aside from its proximity to the United States and generous immigration policies, Canada is also home to some of the world’s top tech companies. This means that if you make the move north, you won’t be sacrificing career opportunities or advancement prospects. In fact, many U.S.-based tech workers have found success and fulfillment in their new Canadian homes!
What about living expenses?
The good news for tech professionals looking to live in Canada is that it has a significantly lower cost of living than most major U.S. cities—making it easier for you to save up money after relocating across the border!
Plus, with its diverse and welcoming culture, excellent healthcare system and stunning landscapes, Canada offers something for everyone!
Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC Canada) has five options for temporary and permanent resident pathways that can help make your dream a reality.
1.The Canadian Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP) offers one of the fastest paths to coming here, with the Global Talent Stream (GTS).
This stream allows Canadian employers to bring specialized foreign tech talent into the country in around two weeks.
The GTS was created specifically for high-skilled individuals who can help innovative Canadian companies grow and be successful. If you have the skills, this is an excellent way to move quickly and make a difference while doing something that you love. It’s also an opportunity for you to experience all the joys of living in Canada—from our winter fun activities like skiing, snowboarding or ice fishing to our diverse and vibrant cities.
Applying for GTS is easy, with a service standard of 10 business days starting on the day your application has been received by Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC Canada). You’ll need to provide proof that you have at least two years of experience in specialized tech fields, such as artificial intelligence, life sciences or advanced manufacturing. Documents like diplomas and transcripts might also be required – depending on the job responsibilities. Additionally, applicants must demonstrate language proficiency in either English or French.
The GTS is an efficient way to get into Canada and launch your career here. Make sure to take advantage of it! With all the great opportunities that come along with it for tech talent, it’s definitely worth considering.
At the end of the day, moving to Canada with the GTS is an amazing opportunity for tech talents from all over the world. You can explore our wonderful country and create a successful career here while doing something you love. So what are you waiting for? Get started on your application now and make your move to Canada!
2.Canada-United States-Mexico Agreement (CUSMA): Intra-Company Transfers (ICTs)
The United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (CUSMA) was put into effect to replace NAFTA in 2020, and included within this agreement is a pathway specifically created to help US citizens working in technology temporarily transfer to work for the Canadian branch, subsidiary, or affiliate of their American employer. This pathway can be used by tech talent from any of the three countries involved in CUSMA: Canada, Mexico, and the U.S..
The ICT branch – one of four total branches – of CUSMA allows tech workers from America to come to Canada for up to 30 months without needing a work permit. There are several criteria that must be met, however: the tech worker must have a pre-arranged job with an eligible employer in Canada, they can’t provide their services to the public, and they must remain employed by a U.S.-based entity throughout their stay.
This opportunity is perfect for those looking to gain new skills, broaden their horizons, and experience the Canadian way of life while still being able to maintain their current employment status in the States. Additionally, this pathway provides access to Canadian employers who need short-term technical help but don’t have time or resources to do so through traditional immigration pathways such as obtaining a permanent resident visa.
With CUSMA allowing US citizens working in technology to temporarily transfer to Canada, the possibilities for growth and development as a tech talent are practically limitless. Whether you are a software engineer, web developer, or data scientist looking for a new adventure or just some job experience abroad, CUSMA provides the perfect opportunity for making your dreams of working in Canada come true.
3.Start-Up Visa Program
Are you an innovative tech talent looking to start a business in Canada?
Then the Start-Up Visa Program could be the right path for you!
The Start-Up Visa program is designed with you in mind—it will connect you with IRCC-designated organizations that can provide funding, guidance, and expertise to help get your business up and running in Canada. These organizations specialize in helping foreign nationals become successful entrepreneurs, so they know what works best for each individual.
Qualifying for this program is as simple as demonstrating your innovative idea with potential for success in Canada. All applicants must have at least one year of experience working on their project or enterprise; a letter of support from a designated organization; prove enough funds to sustain themselves upon arrival in Canada; demonstrate a level of English or French language proficiency; and provide the relevant documents to support their application.
Once accepted, successful applicants can obtain a permanent residence permit for themselves and their family members, provided they meet all other requirements. This will allow them to live, work, and study in any Canadian province or territory as well as apply for citizenship. With the Start-Up Visa Program, ambitious tech talent can see their dreams come true quickly and efficiently—something that could take years if attempting to immigrate through traditional routes.
The Start-Up Visa program is just one of five pathways available for tech talent who are looking to build their future north of the border. If you’re ready to join this community of trailblazers, now is the perfect time to get started. Whether you’re looking for a new career or simply want to build your own business, Canada has plenty of opportunities available for international tech talent. Get in touch with an immigration professional today and see how the Start-Up Visa Program can help make your dreams a reality.
4.Becoming a Canadian permanent resident after working in Canada
The Canadian government has made it possible for U.S. tech workers to apply for permanent residence (PR) in Canada, assuming they meet the eligibility requirements and without first having to work here.
There are various pathways available designed specifically with foreign nationals – including U.S. tech workers – in mind that make achieving PR status much simpler and faster than ever before. These pathways include Express Entry, which is a point-based system used by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) to assess skilled workers who wish to become permanent residents; and the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP), which allows individual provinces or territories to nominate people for immigration to Canada.
Achieving permanent residence in Canada through these pathways is much easier if you have Canadian work experience, as this can help increase your points score when applying under Express Entry or receive more consideration from a particular province or territory. Furthermore, the recently-announced Global Skills Strategy also allows foreign nationals to obtain two-year work permits in specific cases.
Fortunately, U.S. tech workers are no longer required to first gain some form of Canadian work experience prior to being able to apply for PR status here: rather, they may use their existing American experience on its own and still be eligible for PR status if it meets the requirements outlined by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC).
If you are a U.S. tech worker hoping to break into the Canadian market, then you may find that your skills and experience can open up many opportunities for both work and permanent residence in this country. With such great pathways available, it’s never been easier to make Canada your home! So don’t wait any longer; start planning your move today!
5.Provincial Nominee Program
PNPs, or Provincial Nominee Programs, are regional immigration initiatives in 11 of Canada’s 13 provinces and territories. Instead of having a blanket national immigration system, the Canadian government has allowed these provincial and territorial governments to customize their own immigration policies to best suit the needs of their local economies.
This is an incredibly efficient way for Canada to better spread the advantages that come with immigration across the country. Without PNPs, areas such as Ontario and British Columbia would likely be seeing all the benefits while other provinces struggle. With this program however, regions can nominate individuals they believe will help fill specific labor gaps within their respective provinces or territories. This not only ensures that each area receives its fair share of economic growth but also increases the diversity of Canada’s immigration population.
PNPs are an incredibly valuable resource for those looking to immigrate to Canada, as it offers a variety of different routes and options which can be tailored to any individual’s skillset or profession. For example, Saskatchewan has their own PNP called the Saskatchewan Immigrant Nominee Program (SINP) which allows people with certain professions, such as physicians and construction workers, to apply directly without having to go through the Express Entry system. Similarly, Alberta’s program provides pathways for individuals with engineering backgrounds.
No matter what your professional background is, chances are there will be some kind of provincial immigration initiative that caters specifically to you and your chosen field. It’s important to do your research and find out which program is best suited to you and your specific skill set. That being said, PNPs are an invaluable tool for those looking for a new life in Canada.
Not only are PNPs incredibly helpful for those trying to immigrate, but they’re also great news for the Canadian economy as a whole. They allow regional governments to tap into talent from around the world, fostering economic development and helping create jobs in areas that may have otherwise been left behind without such initiatives in place.
All in all, Provincial Nominee Programs are an excellent way for prospective immigrants to make their mark on Canada while simultaneously helping local economies grow through job creation and economic development. With the right research and understanding of the program, PNPs can be a great stepping stone in providing pathways to permanent residency for those looking to call Canada their new home.
So if you’re a tech worker in the U.S. looking for a change of scenery, why not take a look at what Canada has to offer?
Thanks to its booming tech industry, friendly immigration policies and lower cost of living, it could be just the place you need to start your next chapter!
Are you looking to apply for any type of visa to Canada?
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***Please note government fees are to be paid at the moment of submitting the application. They are also non-refundable if the application is refused.