New Federal Skilled Worker Program for Canada

By , on July 19, 2014


Last April 23rd, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) announced the re-launch of the Federal Skilled worker program (FSWP) which takes effect on May 1st 2014. Last year’s FSWP, which was re-opened after a one-year pause and has been in effect since May 4th, 2013, will end on the 30th of this month.

Highlights of the new FSWP
• Overall cap of 25,000 new applications on eligible occupations categories
• 500 cap on new applications under the PhD stream
• No limit on applicants who have a valid job offer from a Canadian employer
• Sub-cap of 1,000 new applications for each of the 50 occupations as enumerated below (with their corresponding 2011 National Occupation Classification (NOC) code (in brackets):
1. Senior managers – financial, communications and other business services (0013)
2. Senior managers – trade, broadcasting and other services, n. e. c. (0015)
3. Financial managers (0111)
4. Human resources managers (0112)
5. Purchasing managers (0113)
6. Insurance, real estate and financial brokerage managers (0121)
7. Managers in health care (0311)
8. Construction managers (0711)
9. Home building and renovation managers (0712)
10. Managers in natural resources production and fishing (0811)
11. Manufacturing managers (0911)
12. Financial auditors and accountants (1111)
13. Financial and investment analysts (1112)
14. Securities agents, investment dealers and brokers (1113)
15. Other financial officers (1114)
16. Professional occupations in advertising, marketing and public relations (1123)
17. Supervisors, finance and insurance office workers (1212)
18. Property administrators (1224)
19. Geoscientists and oceanographers (2113)
20. Civil engineers (2131)
21. Mechanical engineers (2132)
22. Electrical and electronics engineers (2133)
23. Petroleum engineers (2145)
24. Information systems analysts and consultants (2171)
25. Database analysts and data administrators (2172)
26. Software engineers and designers (2173)
27. Computer programmers and interactive media developers (2174)
28. Mechanical engineering technologists and technicians (2232)
29. Construction estimators (2234)
30. Electrical and electronics engineering technologists and technicians (2241)
31. Industrial instrument technicians and mechanics (2243)
32. Inspectors in public and environmental health and occupational health and safety (2263)
33. Computer network technicians (2281)
34. Nursing co-ordinators and supervisors (3011)
35. Registered nurses and registered psychiatric nurses (3012)
36. Specialist physicians (3111)
37. General practitioners and family physicians (3112)
38. Dietitians and nutritionists (3132)
39. Audiologists and speech-language pathologists (3141)
40. Physiotherapists (3142)
41. Occupational therapists (3143)
42. Respiratory therapists, clinical perfusionists and cardiopulmonary technologists (3214)
43. Medical radiation technologists (3215)
44. Medical sonographers (3216)
45. Licensed practical nurses (3233)
46. Paramedical occupations (3234)
47. University professors and lecturers (4011)
48. Psychologists (4151)
49. Early childhood educators and assistants (4214)
50. Translators, terminologists and interpreters (5125)

Who is a Federal Skilled Worker?
A Federal Skilled Worker (FSW) is chosen as permanent resident to Canada based on a selection grid made up of six factors—education, work experience, knowledge of English and/or French, age, whether they have an arranged employment in Canada, and adaptability. These factors are indicators of their ability to prosper in the Canadian labour market and adapt to Canadian life.
A skilled worker may apply to immigrate to Canada under the FSWP if they want to live and work in any Canadian province or territory except Quebec which has its own separate skilled worker category.

Selection Factors
The following is a grid, from the present FSWP, consisting of 6 factors with the corresponding points totalling to 100. The pass mark is 67 points. It remains to be seen whether the new FSWP will maintain the existing grid and point system.

Selection Factor Maximum points
English and/or French Skills 28
Education 25
Work experience 15
Age 12
Arranged employment in Canada 10
Adaptability 10

Developments/Changes to the FSWP
The following were the main changes to the FSWP:
• Under the 2008 Action Plan for Faster Immigration, CIC began to limit FSW application intake to priority occupations.
• In 2010, the Department added caps to the number of new applications.
• In June 2012, the Jobs, Growth, and Long-Term Prosperity Act eliminated most of the remaining FSW applications received before February 27, 2008. Around 280,000 applications from the 280,000 FSW backlog were eliminated which paved the way for a faster and more flexible economic immigration system;
• In July 2012, CIC issued a temporary pause on new FSW applications, excluding candidates with a qualifying job offer or those applying under the PhD stream.
• On May 4, 2013, the new FSWP was launched, effective until April 30, 2014, setting an over-all cap of 5,000 new applications for the 24 eligible occupations, with a sub-cap of 300 new applications for each of the eligible occupations.

New Guidelines
On April 26, 2014, CIC is expected to issue a new set of Ministerial Instructions to immigration officers regarding the processing of applications to the FSWP.

What to do
If you are skilled worker, whether in Canada as a temporary worker or outside of Canada and belonging to any of the 50 occupations and thinking of becoming a permanent resident in Canada, you should start preparing your documents. If you have not yet done so already, consider consulting a professional for help with your application.
Grace and Leo are both licensed immigration consultants and members of the Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council. They may be contacted at (778) 840-4295 or (778) 227-7679 or by email at