213,000 jobs lost in the single month of January 2021. Unemployment levels hovering around ten percent. Such statistics about the Canadian economy can make you wonder whether there’s any point in trying to find a job and immigrate to Canada.
With one in ten members of the Canadian work force staring at unemployment, how can there be demand for a foreign skilled worker? Well, the numbers present a completely different picture once you focus on the details.
In fact, it won’t be wrong to say that the data for January should encourage every foreign skilled worker to seriously focus on immigrating to Canada.
The Hidden Details
Loss of more than 200,000 jobs sounds very bad. However, virtually all the jobs lost were part-time jobs of two provinces that were forced to reintroduce lockdowns to control the spread of the pandemic.
Ontario and Quebec saw a surge in cases and had to opt for lockdowns again. What about other Canadian provinces? Seven out of the other eight Canadian provinces actually saw job gains. So, barring the disproportionate impact of the two provinces, the overall job setup was actually positive for the month.
The shutdown in the two provinces led to job losses in sectors like accommodation, food services, retail trade, and recreation. However, other sectors actually added jobs. Construction added 40,000 jobs while Healthcare and social assistance to added 20,000 jobs.
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Sector-wise analysis too shows that the overall economic setup is positive with negative impact restricted to sectors affected by the second lockdown.
Analysis of the kind of jobs lost too shows that only part-time jobs were lost. This means employers did not let go of their permanent full-time workers, which clearly shows that there is a lot of confidence among Canadian businesses.
Age-wise analysis of jobs lost shows that the 15-24 age group lost 108,000 jobs while those aged between 25-54 lost 107,000 jobs. This shows more inexperienced youngsters and student workers were let go while the working-age population was relatively more protected.
Finally, Canada has actually seen a increase in full-time employment levels. It is just 2.7 percent below pre-pandemic levels.
Employment Data and Your Immigration Strategy
The headline number may look bad but that doesn’t mean you can hit the panic button just yet. The underlying situation is much stronger and stepping back on your immigration plans can leave you at a huge disadvantage in the future.
Actionable 1—Be Aggressive
The long-term strength in the Canadian economy remains unaffected, which means you must be aggressive in planning your immigration strategy. There’s nothing to be gained by waiting till 2022 to submit your Express Entry application.
Assess your eligibility, calculate your CRS score and get into the EE pool at the earliest. A low CRS score is not a very big problem now that Canada has conducted a EE draw for CEC candidates with a minimum score of just 75 points.
Actionable 2—PNP is Equally Important
The pandemic’s economic impact has not hit all provinces in the same way. The Atlantic provinces have been hit less hard than other provinces. Ontario may have been hit hard but the fact that it is a hub for technology and for life sciences means its recovery will be equally strong.
So, look for new streams or updates to the list of in-demand occupations of various provincial nomination programs. Being in the Express Entry pool at the right place and time can help you secure the 600-point PNP boost without any difficulty.
Actionable 3—Make Yourself Valuable for Canadian Employers
A job is not a mandatory requirement but having a job offer from an eligible Canadian employer can give you a good shot at working and settling in Canada. Instead of waiting for a miracle, why don’t you focus on ways to boost your value for Canadian employers?
Mastering French and showing high proficiency in English as well as French can open up Francophone programs for you. Canada is very keen on settling French-speaking immigrants outside Quebec.
Devoting an hour towards learning French can make a huge difference in six months. The same applies to post-graduation courses and qualifications or even professional training courses. Keep adding value to your resume so that Canadian employers find it impossible to reject your application for a job.
Actionable 4—Give Yourself the Advantage of Professional Immigration Assistance
A Do-It-Yourself immigration plan works when you have a textbook profile with no gray areas. However, real life rarely fits textbook scenarios. This is where a professional immigration expert in Canada can make a huge difference.
From a thorough assessment of you eligible for Express Entry to ranking PNP streams in terms of your chances, an immigration attorney can help you take control of your Canadian dream.
Remember, hidden inside every crisis is an opportunity. The only thing you need to focus on converting the Covid-19 pandemic into an opportunity to transform your life forever.