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ALLIES recently released a report on Perceptions of Employment Barriers and Solutions.

I am reproducing excerpts from this report for this newsletter. Why is this report important to you? Simply put because the learnings and gaps can help you better prepare for your journey to employment success in Canada.

Gap in Language and Communication Skills:

Among the employers interviewed for the study, 95% said concerns about poor language and communication skills stopped them from employing newcomers. In sharp contrast, only 27% of newcomers said they experienced challenges in this area. Findings of this research suggest that employers think of language skills in two different ways: ability to use language effectively to communicate with clients and colleagues; and ability to use sector-specific terminology required to work within their occupation.

This is not surprising to me. In 2009 PCPI released a similar report that showed that we immigrants do not believe we have a challenge with language but the employers certainly feel so. Look at the gap 27% immigrants feel language is a challenge versus 95% of employers! So what can you do to prepare yourself for this challenge? Firstly when you land in Canada start making Canadian friends and observe their language and usage. This will go far in helping you understand colloquialisms and phrases.

Another way of improving language skills is through volunteering and of course getting yourself a mentor will help you get sector specific terminology and jargon.

Pre-arrival information gap:

Many newcomers do not have the necessary information needed to successfully integrate into the labour market when they arrive. They often realize what they need to do only after having lived here for a while and struggled to find employment. Overall, newcomers felt that their expectations had not been well managed during the pre-arrival assessment process. Many suggested that more targeted information would have helped them be better prepared.

You are so fortunate that you have access to such a wealth of information whether you are in your home country or are now in Canada.

We conducted a poll of our webinar attendees and were pleased to see some results:

  • Connected with immigrant settlement agency – 95%
  • Read the newsletters – 75%
  • KBYG gave more realistic expectations of employment in Canada – 73%
  • Employed at present – 73%
  • Program helped understand credentialing – 70%
  • Connected with regulatory body – 65%
  • Employed within their field – 57%
  • KBYG made attendee feel better prepared – 55%
  • Had credentials assessed – 54%
  • Got further training after coming to Canada – 51%
  • Had language assessment – 37%

What is really interesting is the numbers connecting with a settlement agency, reading our newsletters and getting jobs. This is above the average and it sure says something about what Prepare for Canada does to improve your job prospects!

We at Prepare for Canada are working diligently to provide you with the most accurate information in a timely manner. We will continue to do so and work towards a more positive outcome from all of you!


Nick Noorani