Almost all Express Entry immigrants found employment within the first year of arrival and, in general, outperformed immigrants who went through the previous application system.
A recent report from Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) examined how Express Entry immigrants performed in the Canadian labor market between 2015 and 2018. They compared the results of groups of people who applied through the Express Entry system online; and Express Entry Immigrants who still used the old paper application system.
All the participants in the survey applied for immigration through the Federal Skilled Worker Program, the Skilled Trades Program (FSTP), the Canadian Experience Class (CEC), or an “enhanced” Provincial Nominee Program (PNP).
Immigrants coming through Express Entry have seen “generally positive” results in the three years following the launch of the electronic application management system in January 2015. Although the results show favorable results in the short term, IRCC noted that ‘Express Entry was designed to select immigrants who have long-term success.
Express Entry immigrants tended to outperform non-Express Entry immigrants in the labor market. 95 percent of Express Entry immigrants were employed in the first year after immigration, compared to 87 percent of non-Express Entry immigrants who were hired during the same period. Among Express Entry immigrants who got a job the year after immigrating, about 83% were working in their field of expertise.
When breaking down immigrant employment by the program, Express Entry applicants were consistently more likely to be employed. FSW and CEC immigrants experienced the highest employment rates when they applied through the Express Entry system.
Express Entry immigrants were also more likely to hold more skilled jobs than non-Express Entry immigrants.
One year after entering Canada, Express Entry immigrants earned about 20 percent more in annual wages than non-Express Entry immigrants. Skilled immigrants earned an average of $ 10,200 more per year than Canadian-born workers, coming through the Express entry program.
The only exceptions were CEC and FSTP immigrants, as non-Express Entry immigrants participating in these programs earned more after their first year in Canada. When IRCC looked at other variables, it found that the differences in earnings came from differences in expected occupation, age, sex, level of education, and others.
Non-Express entry immigrants start in lower-skilled jobs
Immigrants coming from Express entry or any other immigration pathway saw more career advancement in terms of employment income. Immigrants without express entry were more likely to report career advancement, but also that their first jobs in Canada were less skilled.
More than a third of all respondents said that at the time of completing the survey, they were no longer working in the same job they had originally held in Canada. More non-Express Entry immigrants (41%) reported changing jobs compared to Express Entry respondents (36%).
Among those who changed jobs, a greater proportion of non-Express Entry immigrants (34%) reported changing jobs at a skill level higher than the National Occupational Classification (NOC), compared to immigrants Express Entry (24%). However, within the same NOC skill level, Express entry immigrants have more chances to change their profession.
Non-Express Entry respondents were more likely to start working in low-skilled occupations with NOC C or D. “As a result, non-EE respondents in lower-skilled occupations would have more opportunities for upward mobility,” the report reads.
Both Express Entry (83%) and non-Express Entry (85%) immigrants reported that their income increased between their first job and the one they held at the time of the survey.