3 Common Misconceptions About Hiring Foreign Tech Workers in Canada
With the tech industry in Canada rapidly growing, the government implemented the Global Talent Stream application to make it easier than ever to hire foreign tech talent for Canadian companies. Understandably, many Canadian companies are still hesitant to try the program due to how hard, lengthy and expensive it used to be to sponsor foreign tech workers.
However, after helping dozens of Canadian companies sponsor dozens of foreign tech workers in the last few years, I want to discuss the 3 common misconceptions I see and hear about hiring foreign tech workers in Canada in hopes of convincing more companies to take advantage of this great opportunity.
Read about the 3 misconceptions below or watch me explain them here:
Misconception #1: It Takes a Long Time
I don’t blame Canadian companies for thinking this because it used to be the case, but It's never been quicker to bring tech workers to Canada thanks to programs like the Global Talent Stream. Sponsoring a worker through what’s called a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) typically takes 3-6 months - sometimes longer.
But thanks to the Global Talent Stream application, the entire process can take as little as 4-6 weeks. To learn more about it and schedule a time to chat, head over here.
Misconception #2: It’s Expensive
When people think of hiring foreign workers or immigration in general, they usually think about the added costs (government filing fees, legal fees, etc.). What they don’t consider is the short versus long-term costs and how much you can save over time by hiring foreign tech workers. See the chart below as an example of hiring a domestic tech worker versus a foreign tech worker:
When hiring skilled tech talent in Canada, such as a citizen or permanent resident, you should expect to pay a high salary (depending on location/occupation/experience). And not only that, you’re competing with all the other tech companies and recruiters to hire and keep these workers working for your company long term.
If you're hiring a foreign worker, there is a legal minimum required salary based on the occupation and location of your office, but this is usually lower than what you'd be paying a domestic worker within the country who's already here and can take their pick from multiple Canadian companies (not always the case, but on average domestic workers will command a higher salary and foreign workers are satisfied because they get a very fair salary and start a new life in Canada).
Please note: I am not suggesting anyone should underpay foreign workers - I always ensure companies are paying the legal minimum required salary at the very least, this is simply a reflection of the supply and demand in the current tech landscape. Many clients have been happy to pay much more than the legal minimum required salary, and it is in place to ensure all workers are fairly compensated.
There are also government filing fees and immigration costs if you choose to work with a professional. These can vary depending on the firm you work with, but can be quite reasonable especially considering the potential difference in salary (for more details on my services and fees, click here).
Overall, you can see the potential in savings for hiring a foreign worker - and not just for the 1st year of employment. If your 1st year salary is, for example, $20,000 lower, you are saving that amount for every year the employee stays at your company - which could result in hundreds of thousands of dollars over the span of a career!
Misconception #3: It Takes a Lot of Preparation and Effort
Thanks to technology, sponsoring foreign workers through the Global Talent Stream is easier than ever for a few reasons.
First, the whole process can be done online - meaning you don't have to fumble around with paperwork, handwriting, or even using original signatures. You can simply follow the online instructions provided and upload your completed application to their online portal. Click here for our extensive guide on how to fill out and submit the Global Talent Stream application form.
Also, if you have good legal help that leverages technology, it is even easier. For example, I personally work on streamlining the Global Talent Stream application process so that it's as easy as possible and there are as few touch points between us as possible. This means less time emailing back-and-forth with your lawyer, and more time to spend on growing your company.
While immigration has traditionally meant “slow and expensive”, it’s no longer the case if you’re looking to sponsor foreign tech workers. If you’re interested in learning more about the Global Talent Stream application or getting started, head over here or fill out this quick form and I’ll be in contact within 24 business hours.