Canada Immigration Updateexpress entry

Category-Based Selection Announced for Express Entry Candidates

Published on: May 31st, 2023

Today IRCC announced the launch of a new process to welcome skilled newcomers to Canada. Beginning this summer, Express Entry will begin using category-based selection criteria for draws.

New Express Entry Categories

The first-ever category-based selection for Express Entry was just announced today. Category-based selections will allow Canada to issue invitations to apply (ITAs) to prospective applications with specific skills, training or language abilities. This will better allow for the selection of applicants with the most in-demand skills to be chosen to receive permanent residence. 

This year, the focus will be on Express Entry Candidates who have a strong French-language proficiency or experience in one of the following fields:

  • Healthcare
  • Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) professions
  • Trades such as carpenters, plumbers and contractors
  • Transport
  • Agriculture and agri-food

A full list of the professions and eligibility can be found on the IRCC’s dedicated webpage.

To benefit, applicants must demonstrate that they have at least 6 months of work experience in the last 3 years in a qualifying occupation. Further information about individual categories and how to apply will be announced in the coming weeks 

When will category-based rounds of invitations start? 

Category-based draws are expected to begin taking place this summer. More information will likely be made available in the next few weeks.

What should I do if my occupation is not listed? 

In their announcement, IRCC confirmed that the category-based rounds of invitation will add to general and provincial rounds, suggesting all program draws will continue to take place. If your occupation does not appear on the demand list, you can still be considered for these general draws.  

Furthermore, provinces and territories will continue to use the Express Entry pool to source applicants. Candidates who have secured a provincial nomination have demonstrated they have the skills, education and work experience to contribute to the province or territory’s economy, therefore they will receive an ITA via the all program or provincial Express Entry draws. 

Future changes to Express Entry draws

Introducing category-based selections from the express entry pool is the first step IRCC is taking to better respond to the Canadian labour market deficits. In addition to this, IRCC is expected to prioritize profiles based on the applicant’s intended destination in Canada however further information on this has yet to be released.

What Is Express Entry and How Can I Apply?

Express Entry is a system used by the Canadian government to manage applications for Canadian permanent residency. Express Entry uses a point-based system, the CRS, to rank candidates’ profiles. The system manages three main programs:

Applying to Express Entry is a two-step procedure. The first step is to submit your profile with the required documents. Required documents usually consist of language test results, educational credentials and passport or travel documentation.

After you submit a profile and receive an invitation to apply for Canadian permanent residence, you can submit your complete application for the IRCC to review. Your complete application should include supporting documents such as reference letters, additional identity documents, police clearance certificates, and results of a medical examination.

Interested in learning more about your options to enter the Express Entry pool? Complete our free online assessment form today!

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