Austin

Work Permit & Job Offer

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Austin

Hi All

First time joining this forum and have lots of questions I want to ask. Hoping their kind hearted people who can help me and by the looks of this forum, there are many of you kind hearted ones on here. But first a very brief back ground info of our current situation and where are in the whole process. 

I'm 35, married, wife is 30 years old and we are in the beginning stages of our immigration process. We've met with our immigration solicitor last week to get the ball rolling, just awaiting his e-mail with instructions on the next step to take. He is legit and his practice is based in BC, but also has offices in Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan, Alberta and one here in SA.

After meeting and discussing matters with him and reviewing my assessment, it has been established that I only qualify for one entry stream, namely PNP Job Offer Stream, so our successful immigration is contingent on whether or not I can find a legitimate job offer with a LMIA. The LMIA application will also be done by our solicitor on behalf of the prospective new employer. We were also told that certain provinces are closed to us due to certain out of our control factors, for e.g. Alberta (our preferred province, have friends living there, so we are somewhat saddened about this one) due to high levels of unemployment in this province, Calgary has hit a new high in unemployed people - 76,000 - highest in Canada, so looking for work there will be near impossible as a foreign national who is coming over on only a work permit, as Canada has a "local first" policy, and rightly so, SA has the same policy all be it a lot more relaxed one. Some other issues are point scoring systems, language barrier ect. But fortunately these issues are few and there a more solutions than problems. 

So with this all in mind, I am hoping there is someone on this forum who has been in the same situation and made it thru, who can give me some advice. My questions are as follows: 

How did you manage to secure a job offer with a LMIA?

How did you navigate the networking aspect in your attempts in finding the right job? (as not all job vacancies are published or advertised online, a lot are only by word of mouth ect)

Where and what platforms did you use or had at your disposal that helped you in securing a job offer?

Your assistance and/or guidance and advice will greatly be appreciated. 

Our solicitor will also help with a lot of these matters as well as guide as thru the whole process step by step. But one of his very important points was about networking and sourcing connections in the industry in which I am employed but also in other fields in which I have knowledge and some experience to maximize my chances of finding the right job.  Where better to start down this avenue than right here, where there are many people with whom I can get into contact with and who have gone thru this labyrinth of Immigration. 

Many thanks in advance for any help and advice you can give

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OutOfSa

Hello Austin, welcome - I hope you find what you need on this forum.

I am always concerned when I see people are using outside help to obtain entry to Canada - yip, this has been covered over and over again. In the interests of full declaration, I did not use a LIMA, I arrived job-less.  We were extremely 'lucky' to get in just before the EE.  

Something that jumped out at me when I read your post is that I am not sure if your lawyer can do the LIMA - the Canadian government site says the LIMA 'Must be done by the employer' - now I'm not sure if that's just wording, or in fact an imigration lawyer can do it.  As I understand it, the company will often hire a labour lawyer to assist them in obtaining a LIMA.  They may or may not choose to hire your lawyer - if they don't, then it seems to me that some of the money you paid for that service would be a waste.  If only the company can do the LIMA, then there is some dishonesty here as this lawyer should know that.  

In a recent post I noted that a person was paying 1000's for "job optimisation" - that struck me as very dishonest.  Nobody can optimise anything for you, at the end of the day everyone is on their own - especially in their hours of need - people will take advantage of this, their job it to get money from the person they are "helping".  They assist a person in losing their hard earned money by offering false hope.  The Canadian government is very clear about this, nobody had and power to influence an application.  There are many "bad" people in Canada, and their numbers are increasing all the time.  

Take a look at :  (LIMA rules)  - note the https://www.cic.gc.ca/english/helpcentre/answer.asp?qnum=163&top=17

As I said, I don't know enough about this and I might be totally wrong - I simply thought I should bring it to your attention.

I would also urge you to obtain all your information and double check everything the lawyer says by reviewing the official Canadian immigration site. 

I wish you all the luck in the world.

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Nelline

It's very difficult to get employment from outside Canada, and only certain specific skillsets usually have a chance. Therefore, what kind of job are you looking for? This will also determine how you'll need to set about researching potential employment opportunities. Also research the AIPP, an Atlantic Provinces programme whereby designated employers can get work permits for qualified employees without the need of an LMIA.

 

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Lizelle

Moenie 'n immigration lawyer vertrou verder as wat jy hom/haar kan gooi nie.  

Pretty sure immigration lawyers are slimier than car salesmen.  If you have not already paid them everything, I would rethink that very, very strongly.

Few things to remember.  That lawyer is NOT on your side.  They get paid no matter if you get in or not.  No matter if it takes 5 years or not.  No matter if they screw up and take too long to send things in, or forget to do them.  Makes no difference to them.  

I would start off by double checking everything.  Work out what your EE score is.  It has been discussed plenty of times, so do a search, and when you are done, post it on here, and you should be getting an honest opinion on what your chances look like.  We will give you an honest opinion, AND it is free :) 

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Austin

Hi OutofSA

Many thanks for your kind reply. Yes I agree, it is very dangerous to use outside help to gain entry into Canada, I had that problem in the beginning of the year with CVP ( CanadianVisa Professionals). Had few red flags with them. They managed to get around $50 out of me but they tried their best to gain a futher $4000 but I would not budge on their requirments and requests, specifically that they wanted my credit card details AND CVC pin (secure 3 digit pin) so that they could deduct "their legal fees", and would not allow me to make payments myself when and where necessary. So I am very cautious about who I deal with ect. The only reason why I am dealing with our current laywer is because he did our friends immigration to Canada a few years ago and now last year helped them with obtaining their Canadian Citizenship around the end of the year. Our friends recieved their offical documents in early January this year. So these people are well above board. If you wish you are more that welcome to go visit their website and have a look at them for yourself. 

www.matrixvisa.com 

I must also aplogise, I think my own wording may have been misleading, our laywer does not provide LMIA's on his own, when I mentioned that he does LMIA's i meant that he assists employers on applying for impact assessments, his practice does all the legal leg work at a nominal fee charged to the employer, but the employer at the end of the day is the only one who can lagally apply for a LMIA. Many apologies for any confusion due to my wording. His also not an outside help, he actually resides permanently in Vancouver and that's where his main practice is based. He travels to SA every 6 - 8 weeks. His office here in SA is a Satelite office (also referred to as a virtual office he shares with another company who rents him office space), he uses when he is in the country

On the point of spending 1000's on laywer fees and such, our laywer right at the start of our meeting pointed out that we are under no obligation to retain his services but in the event that we do, he can not give any gaurantees, so the risk rests solely on our shoulders. So moving forward is a financial risk on our side. 

On the LMIA side of things, not all provinces require a LMIA for a job offer, some only require a langauge test and job offer, or that you pass a minimum point score. E.g BC has a point system where you have to have a minimum of 100 points, I barely make it at exactly 100 points, Manitoba on the other hand only requires immigrants to have 62 points based on their specific points system, which in my case I surpassed as I got 96 points based on my education, work experience ect, but I still need a job offer to gain entry.

Nelline, As for the AIPP, our lawyer did mention that the Atlantic Provinces are a very good option to look at as well, he also mention that those provinces has special programs to help not olny the provinces but also to help immigrants boost the local market and economy. So that is one area that we are exploring as well. But your comment about find work from outside of Canada being very difficult is the topic I am actually after as that is the problem staring me in the face, to find suitable work in my line of expertice. My profession for the past 12 years is Drafting, the NOC lists my profession under no. 2253 and is categorized as a Level B profession. 

Lizelle, ek stem saam jou, ek vertrou prokereurs sover as wat ek hul kan gooi, en glo my ek is nie n groot outjie nie so die gooi is nie baie ver nie. But you have a point, they are also out to make money, so whether or not my application is succesful or not they still get a big chunck of my hard earned money, but in this case I am feeling confident in the lawyer we chose as he has many referels and he him self and his wife are ex-South Africans. They have been living in Canada for many years, started on the Eastern side and eventually settled on the West Coast. I also followed your advice and I did a preliminary EE test on Canada.gov, my final points came to 329, much lower than last year this time when I did it aswell, back then I had around 470, think there has been some significant changes to the CRS scoring, plus I could not give truly accurate answers as I have not yet done my EILTS nor do I have a job offer or PNP. It would seem that the CRS for the EE is calculated to cater more for the applicants who are much further along in their applications than me, for instance a PNP in some provinces can only be acquired after 9 months of full time employment in that specific province, then you get a 600 point boost to your over all CRS score, hence my reasoning that the CRS scoring is partial to applicants who are already in Canada and has been there for some time, not so much for new comers like me. 

So my question based on Nelline's comment about it being difficult finding work in Canada from outside of Canada, is this:

How did you find work in Canada when you started with your immigration?

What steps did you take to get in and find suitable work?

When you did your interviews, where did you find the best success, with in person interviews or skype/face time video calls?

Was skype interviews an option back then and are they acceptable in todays world given our geographic location? 

But needless to say all your comments and advise are very much appreciated and I will keep it on record and use what I can in the future to help me with my applications. Hopefully one day soon I can give you all some good news. 

Kindest regards

Austin

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Lizelle

:) my brother used him. Was an utter waste of time and money. I can’t stand him on that basis.

“Helped them with Canadian Citizenship” Er, why? You fill out some easy forms and do some easy tests. I have NEVER heard of anyone needing help getting their citizenship.

My point here being, regardless of the fact that he helped your friends, he screwed over others, and I think the fact that he helped them with their citizenship is a major negative point against him, not a positive. Keep that very close to the front of your mind when you are dealing with him.

When we came over we had PR before getting here. Even with PR we could not get anyone to even talk to us until we said we are landing in Canada on x date. The big problem staring you in the face is the processing time for LMIA.  Last time I checked it was around 6 months. I think it might be a little less, but I am not sure.

So let’s say it’s 3 months. That means you have to be so amazing on paper, and the need for the company must be so great that they would have to be willing to wait for you to start working there for 3 - 6 months (3 months for the LMIA and then however long it takes to get the actual work visa after that, and then however long it takes you to get here). Very few people really fall in that category.

We did the normal job boards route. Just applied for things. Generally you should be looking at LinkedIn. Also see if you can find a serious need somewhere up north where no-one else wants to go. They might be more willing to look at the LMIA route.

The other serious problem that you have is that I am going to guess that draftsman is in over supply at the moment. Alberta pulled a lot of tradesmen when the oilsands were booming. With the crash all those people had to go somewhere else. With the new trade war between Saudi and Russia oil is going to go even lower, which probably means that more people are looking at losing their jobs in the oilsands.

To be very frank, I would be very seriously surprised if any draftsman position currently advertised don’t get absolutely flooded with applications.

This also especially impacts the Atlantic provinces, since many many people moved from there to the oilsands, which puts the AIPP in doubt for you.

And I don’t see the situation changing any time soon.

If I were you I would give serious consideration to New Zealand. It’s a theme I harp on a lot, but I think not mentioning it would do you a massive disservice. In New Zealand a work visa takes about 1 WEEK. If you are on the skills shortage list, then companies don’t have to prove they cannot find anyone to do it ( https://skillshortages.immigration.govt.nz/)

NZ companies are more than willing to do Skype interviews, and depending on the company and need, willing to pay for relocation.  Now, this changes completely if they also have an oversupply of draftsman, but it is easy to check by seeing how many job postings you can find on the NZ job boards that you qualify for (https://www.seek.co.nz/).

That would be my advice.

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Austin

So sorry to hear that your brother id not have success and things did not end well for his first attempt on immigration. but I assume he did come right somewhere else and is now happily living where he wants too? 

Thank you for the advice on NZ options, I did have a good look at the links you provided. My profession is listed on there but their educational requirements are very high and puts me a bit short of the mark as my drafting is currently not a "long term" profession on the critical skills list which brings up other entry requirements, hence the strict education bench mark scenario. But none the less it is very interesting reading and most definitely a viable option to explore futher, thank you so much for this!   

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OutOfSa

Hi Austin

I've heard mixed reviews about Matrix - but I get the feeling they are legit in terms of operations - not fly-by-night scammers.  

They helped (created) a resume for a friend, it had some typo's and grammatical  issues which are a HUGE No-No ! I

How did you find work in Canada when you started with your immigration?

I did not, I arrived with bags and rose-colour sunglasses.  They quickly went dark, reality set in and hard times followed, followed by improving times, and better times.  

What steps did you take to get in and find suitable work?

Applied for many, many, many jobs.  Waited....  Applied for more many jobs and more than those many jobs.  Wrote a custom resume for each and every job.

When you did your interviews, where did you find the best success, with in person interviews or skype/face time video calls?

Face to face.  Unless you are the closest thing to special, nobody cares about you - nobody cares that you're from "Africa" - in fact, that counts against you because Africa is a place where children have flies in their eyes.  (Very few people here have the faintest notion that Africa and South Africa are not the same.)

Was skype interviews an option back then and are they acceptable in todays world given our geographic location? 

I have heard many people have skype interviews.  I think IT people are more likely to be successful using that format.  

 

And with all that bad news, I must admit, Lizelles post made me feel like jumping into the lake with rocks tied to my feet.....:cry:  She advocates for NZ - it looks like a good place.  I'd like to go walk-about there one day - have many SA pals happy settled there.  Canada is a tough place to get a job, they are full of it....

Ah, on the flip-side, there is a shortage of skills at the moment.  Lizelle is correct, Peter-Pan the  Recently-Whiskered Selfie Man has all but destroyed Alberta's economy - Great Job JT!  I bet you go to bed at night feeling quite smug that you tried to lie and cheat to save SC Lavalin, but you watched without a care in the world as 10 000's lost everything in Alberta :cowboy:.  What a guy!  I know who I'm going to vote for next time.  Put that in you're pipe line and smoke it !

Ah, and as for citizenship - there's no real help needed there - when you have had a PR for the minimum amount of time, you fill out some forms - which are really basic, you send them to the Government, they process them, and give you a date to write the test.  And then you have a ceremony.  Nobody needs help, there's nothing to do except put your name on a bunch of forms - in fact, all the stuff on the forms comes straight from your PR papers.  

The best advice I can offer you is that the accepted resume here is not generic, it's a CAREFULLY crafted "perfect" cover letter - very personal to the company concerned, with the second page being the boring stuff - other experience and educations - the last 10 years.  You need to create a specific cover letter for each and every job ... they take hours to write properly & a bunch of research.  The bar has been set pretty high here - exaggeration is all the vogue.  If you've seen a Boeing flying by, you've 25 years pilot experience.  Ha, ha, some stretches are needed to compete, just be sure you can back them up with the necessary BS.  

 

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Austin

Hi OutOfSA

Thank you for answering my questions, it does give me a better perspective of my chances of finding work there, and also what I need to keep in mind for the future. NZ is a good place to go, my cousin is currently in their process of immigrating there, believe their goal is to land there by end of May or June this year. 

As mentioned to Lizelle, I had a look at their critical skills list and my qualifications and experience are just shy of being desirable , but what I did not mention is not only are they stricter with qualifications the cost of immigration is much higher as well. Their phase 1 part of the process put them just shy of around $7,000, they still need to complete 2 more phases before all is said and done, this how ever is on the bases of them immigrating to NZ in the same way you did to Canada with only their "bags and rose-colour sunglasses". He is also a qualified electrician and worked on the mines here in SA, fairly well qualified at that. But even with his qualifications he did not make the desired list of skill sets which would fast track his immigration. 

It is difficult to immigrate to most countries as most countries want to curb an influx of foreign nationals and prevent a local uprising as too many jobs are given to outsiders and not local talent, as what has happened here in SA several times in the last few years, known as xenophobia, a taboo topic and unspeakable situation in all countries but it still happens, all that differs is the severity of it and how it transpires. here in SA is gets violent and people are beaten, shops looted (both foreign and local owned just for good measure) and even worse some immigrants were actually killed, in other countries it might never get as bad and be in such a violent manner, it may take other forms such as not awarding skilled people jobs cause they are from some part of the world that gets a bad rap purely because of location and association with neighboring countries or that they are viewed as unskilled because their country is not a "1st world country" 

No one wants to admit that this happens but it does. But this should not stop anybody who truly wants to immigrate to their country of their choice for a better life. I have had mixed reactions to our plans to immigrate to Canada from all over, some are yes do it, best choice you can make and won't regret it, others are on the fence and has a 50/50 outlook on matters and then again other who say no don't do it, you'll struggle ect. I found that opinions and comments I have received have been based on personal experiences and each and every one of them is of great value as it paints a much bigger picture which helps me tremendously with our plans and motivations. 

But in a nut shell, immigrating to any country will be a difficult and an arduous journey, regardless of where in the world you want to go. Some are much more difficult than others and require more effort and time. Life will be difficult in the beginning but with the proper level of patients and effort things will work out for the best. 

 

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Lizelle
Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, Austin said:

So sorry to hear that your brother id not have success and things did not end well for his first attempt on immigration. but I assume he did come right somewhere else and is now happily living where he wants too? 

Thank you for the advice on NZ options, I did have a good look at the links you provided. My profession is listed on there but their educational requirements are very high and puts me a bit short of the mark as my drafting is currently not a "long term" profession on the critical skills list which brings up other entry requirements, hence the strict education bench mark scenario. But none the less it is very interesting reading and most definitely a viable option to explore futher, thank you so much for this!   

Yip, after struggling along with Matrix visa for a year and many thousands of Rands they applied for work in NZ and are now happily living there.

Edited by Lizelle

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Lizelle
Posted (edited)

I think you may be getting the wrong info about NZ immigration. Remember, the long term lists makes it easier,  but not being on it does not make it impossible. 

I would read through the NZ immigration website a few times to get a proper handle on their process. They try to make the information as easy to read as possible. They have changed it since I immigrated there, and they changed it after my brother moved there, so I cannot really comment on the new process.

However, I know my brother didn’t pay anything to get PR after the first bit (so the first $7000 would be pretty much it in that case).

Good luck, either way, immigration is not for the faint of heart at the best of times.

Edited by Lizelle

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Lizelle

Another thing to consider for NZ (not sure if it will help you in Canada) is your wife’s  profession. My brother was an electrical engineer ( just qualified in SA - so not the whole shebang). His partner was a planner on a mine. She got a job offer as a planner at a lumber mill. Planner is not on any list, but she still got the work permit in 5 days, and they paid for them to move there and they paid for rental and a car for the first month.

Between the two you would have thought that he would be the one getting the offer, so you never know what some company considers important enough to pay for.

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Austin
14 hours ago, Lizelle said:

I think you may be getting the wrong info about NZ immigration. Remember, the long term lists makes it easier,  but not being on it does not make it impossible. 

I would read through the NZ immigration website a few times to get a proper handle on their process. They try to make the information as easy to read as possible. They have changed it since I immigrated there, and they changed it after my brother moved there, so I cannot really comment on the new process.

However, I know my brother didn’t pay anything to get PR after the first bit (so the first $7000 would be pretty much it in that case).

Good luck, either way, immigration is not for the faint of heart at the best of times.

That might be the case yes, I have only read here and there and the links provided, but admittedly I have not read in depth on the actual requirements and options on immigration, partly cause NZ has never really been on my list of possible immigration locations.   

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Austin
3 hours ago, Lizelle said:

Another thing to consider for NZ (not sure if it will help you in Canada) is your wife’s  profession. My brother was an electrical engineer ( just qualified in SA - so not the whole shebang). His partner was a planner on a mine. She got a job offer as a planner at a lumber mill. Planner is not on any list, but she still got the work permit in 5 days, and they paid for them to move there and they paid for rental and a car for the first month.

Between the two you would have thought that he would be the one getting the offer, so you never know what some company considers important enough to pay for.

Yes this is also a point that was discussed in our meeting with CA lawyer, my wife also has a possibility of receiving a job offer all be it that she only does admin work but does have pharmaceutical back ground as she used work in a pharmacy and currently still works in a pharmacy but only in the admin dept and not directly with any medications. she is however not a qualified pharmacist assistant which would allow her to work with medication directly. The Gov here in SA has clamped down strongly on who is allowed to work in the pharmacy in last few years. Prior to the new change it was left up to the pharmacist on duty to decide who he/she would allow to work with scheduled medicines, but that privilege has been taken away. 

But this experience will not help her find a job in CA at all, but she might find an admin job somewhere   

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M-N

Hi there, 

Firstly, congratulations on starting your journey. Hold onto your butts because it’s going to be a wild ride. :) 

I came over with a job offer and a LMIA. It’s not easy but definitely doable.  In my case I have w very specific skill set and at first my employers weren’t interested in getting interviewing me because I was in SA but they eventually budged and here I am 5 years later and a Canadian Citizen.  
 

I would suggest, if you want to spend the money on getting your resume converted to a Canadian resume (I can PM you the name of a Saffa in Canada who comes highly recommended).  
 

Do a LinkedIn bootcamp and spruce up your resume (premium might be needed here). 
 

Reach out to companies directly via their website.  
 

Tailor your resume for each job (lots of googling will give you some pointers).  
 

Good luck.  

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Austin
52 minutes ago, M-N said:

Hi there, 

Firstly, congratulations on starting your journey. Hold onto your butts because it’s going to be a wild ride. :) 

I came over with a job offer and a LMIA. It’s not easy but definitely doable.  In my case I have w very specific skill set and at first my employers weren’t interested in getting interviewing me because I was in SA but they eventually budged and here I am 5 years later and a Canadian Citizen.  
 

I would suggest, if you want to spend the money on getting your resume converted to a Canadian resume (I can PM you the name of a Saffa in Canada who comes highly recommended).  
 

Do a LinkedIn bootcamp and spruce up your resume (premium might be needed here). 
 

Reach out to companies directly via their website.  
 

Tailor your resume for each job (lots of googling will give you some pointers).  
 

Good luck.  

Hi there M-N

Many thanks for your positive response and kind advice. It was refreshing to read your post.

Please PM me with the name of your Saffa, I would like to make contact and see if they will help me and what it cost me to do, as you well know immigration is not cheap and every cent one can spare is a cent less to save up. 

I do have a Linkedin Premium but it's only a 30 day trial, wasn't going to spend money with out trying it out first.  

I will focus more on reaching out to companies and to look at tailoring my resume accordingly. 

I wish I could say that I have a very specific skill set as this would have helped me quite a lot, but draftsman is a "dime a dozen" profession, my best bet is to try and make myself look much better than the rest, which is not an easy task but will try my best. 

Many thanks

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