How to Prepare Your Labour Market Benefits Plan
If you are preparing to submit a Global Talent Stream application for the first time, you will be required to complete a Labour Market Benefits Plan (LMBP). This is often the most important part of your application, so we will go into detail on what the plan is and how to prepare it.
What is a Labour Market Benefits Plan?
The Global Talent Stream is a unique program because unlike other LMIA applications, it does not require your business to do any recruitment. Because of this, the government wants to ensure it is protecting the Canadian labour force and so it requires applicants to commit to activities to create more jobs, training and other opportunities for Canadians or permanent residents in the form of a Labour Market Benefits Plan.
When is a Labour Market Benefits Plan required?
In most cases, you only need to prepare an LMBP if it is your first time submitting a Global Talent Stream application. However, if you have an existing LMBP in place already, you may be asked to update or revise your commitments if you are applying again and sponsoring more foreign workers.
From our experience, the government usually requests additional commitments or a revision to your LMBP if you are looking to hire 3 or more workers than were included in your initial application.
What is a mandatory and complementary benefit?
The LMBP requires that you commit to 3 benefits for the Canadian labour force, and there are 2 different types of benefits - mandatory and complementary.
You must include a minimum of 1 mandatory benefit and 2 complimentary benefits as part of your LMBP.
The 1 mandatory benefit is determined by the category you are applying under. If you are using Category A of the Global Talent Stream, you must commit to creating jobs for Canadians and permanent residents as your mandatory benefit. If you are using Category B (as most do), you must commit to increasing skills and training investments for Canadians and permanent residents.
To learn more about which category you should apply under, read our blog post here.
You also need to include 2 complementary benefits. These are up to you and your business, and the government provides a non-exhaustive list of suggested complementary benefits to choose from, which are:
- increasing the number of Canadians and permanent residents employed full-time and part-time by the employer;
- establishing or enhancing educational partnerships with local or regional post-secondary institutes or with other organizations that are supporting skills and training (for example, providing post-secondary institutes with free licenses or other access to specialized software that will help to build student skills on key industry tools);
- providing paid co-op or internship opportunities for Canadians and permanent residents at the firm;
- developing and implementing policies to support the hiring of underrepresented groups, (for example, hosting and/or attending events that support the professional development and/or hiring of underrepresented groups in the labour market and women in high-skilled technical and/or leadership roles at the firm);
- providing direct training to Canadians or permanent residents, including supporting employees to travel to and attend industry or industry sector conferences relevant to the development of their specialized skillset;
- ensuring that the highly skilled foreign workers directly supervise and mentor Canadian workers at the firm to support knowledge transfer;
- increasing growth of revenue, employment or investment at the firm;
- developing or improving best company practices or policies related to attraction/retention of Canadian workforce (for example, by supporting code sprints and hackathons to hire new employees); and
- developing or enhancing partnerships with organizations that assist with the identification of top domestic capital.
How do I prepare a Labour Market Benefits Plan?
Once you know which category you are applying under, you’ll know what your mandatory benefit is. The next step is to select 2 complimentary benefits from the list above - we usually recommend looking for things you know your company already does or will do, such as hire additional employees, provide trainings, mentorship programs, etc.
Next, you need to include an activity and target for each mandatory and complimentary benefit you chose. The activity is what you and your company will do that falls under the benefit, and the target is a quantitative goal to meet.
For example, if you are applying under Category A, your mandatory benefit is to create jobs. So your activity could be to hire additional Canadians and your target could be 2 per year. You should then choose 2 complementary benefits from the list above and do the same. For example, increasing growth of revenue by 10% per year, or providing a training budget of $1,000 per month that employees can use to attend conferences.
If you are applying under category B, your mandatory benefit must be to increase skills and training investments. This could be organizing quarterly events for the public, hosting monthly lunch and learns within your business, providing monthly training budgets for employees, or more.
You can be flexible with the activities you are including as long as they fit within the scope of the benefit. Once completed, make sure to write the mandatory and complementary benefits, activities and targets in sections 9 and 10 of the Global Talent Stream application form, including start and end dates.
If you need assistance preparing your LMBP, feel free to connect with us here.
What happens after I submit a Global Talent Stream Application?
After you submit your Global Talent Stream Application, Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) will schedule a call with you to review and complete your Labour Market Benefits Plan. This means that your submitted plan is actually just a proposal that you will review and negotiate with the ESDC to find something that you are both comfortable with.
Every 12 months, the ESDC will conduct a progress review. This is usually in the form of a phone call and request for documentation, and is used to check your progress as it relates to the commitments you have outlined in your LMBP. For this reason, we recommend creating a plan that is reasonable for your business to complete.
Will I ever have to update our Labour Market Benefits Plan?
You may have to update your plan if you’ve applied through the Global Talent Stream previously and you are hiring additional foreign workers. From our experience, additional commitments or a revision of your LMBP is usually requested if you are looking to hire 3 or more additional workers than were included in your first application, although this can vary on a case-by-case basis.
Hopefully this guide has helped you understand the LMBP a little clearer. If you’re looking for more guidance or assistance in preparing or submitting your Global Talent Stream application, feel free to reach out to us here.