The introduction of category-based Express Entry draws has led to the selection of certain candidates for Canadian permanent residency, prioritizing their professional experience over their Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score. This new approach has expanded immigration opportunities for individuals who previously may not have had such options. This raises the question: What alternatives exist for those employed in professions that are not the focus of category-based Express Entry draws?
The solution to this query lies in the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP). While the PNP used to be overshadowed by Express Entry, it has now become the primary pathway for economic immigration to Canada. It is administered by every province except for Nunavut and Quebec. PNPs have long followed the model of targeted draws, selecting candidates who can contribute to each province’s demographic and economic needs. Consequently, most PNPs maintain lists of high-demand occupations within their respective provinces.
Below, we have compiled a list of sought-after jobs by province, which PNPs target, along with links to relevant resources. It’s important to note that each PNP has its unique eligibility criteria that must be met in addition to having full-time work experience in a targeted or high-demand profession.
For those seeking to determine if their job titles align with these opportunities, we recommend searching for the National Occupation Code (NOC) associated with each job title. This will help you understand the job responsibilities and how well they match your current role. NOCs are used by the Canadian government to categorize jobs within the country.
In Alberta, the Alberta Provincial Nominee Program (AAIP) doesn’t maintain an official list of specific targeted occupations. However, the province does publish a list of currently high-demand occupations. This list includes various roles such as:
- retail sales supervisors
- registered nurses
- transport truck drivers
- retail and wholesale trade managers
- and accounting and related clerks, among others.
Alberta also has a list of occupations that are ineligible for PNP immigration. Additionally, the province conducts targeted draws for healthcare and agriculture workers through the Dedicated Healthcare pathway and the Priority Sectors and Farm streams, respectively.
The British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program (BCPNP) categorizes its targeted occupations into four main groups:
- tech occupations (including data scientists and web designers)
- healthcare occupations (such as dentists and pharmacists)
- childcare occupations (focused on early childhood educators)
- other priority occupations (aimed at veterinarians and animal health technologists).
The Manitoba Provincial Nominee Program (MPNP) – the oldest of its kind in Canada – categorizes its designated occupations into ten distinct groups:
- Business, finance, and administration occupations, which encompass roles like financial managers, human resource professionals, and administrative officers, among others.
- Natural and applied sciences and related occupations, including architects, data scientists, land surveyors, mechanical and civil engineers, and more.
- Health occupations, which comprise pharmacists, psychologists, physical therapists, and various other healthcare professionals.
- Occupations in education, law, social, community, and government services, such as lawyers, social workers, therapists, early childhood educators, and assistants.
- Occupations in art, recreation, and sport, including audio and video recording technicians, graphic designers, illustrators, sports and fitness program directors, and more.
- Sales and service occupations, which include corporate sales managers, retail sales supervisors, cooks, bakers, and various other service-related roles.
- Trades, transport, and equipment operators and related occupations, involving construction managers, tool and die makers, electricians, plumbers, carpenters, and more.
- Natural resources, agriculture, and related occupations, with a specific focus on agriculture managers.
- Occupations in manufacturing and utilities, targeting manufacturing managers, utilities managers, power engineers, and power system operators.
- Rural in-demand occupations, concentrating on roles such as nurse’s aides, orderlies, patient service associates, industrial butchers, meat cutters, poultry preparation, and related positions.
The New Brunswick Provincial Nominee Program (NBPNP) doesn’t provide a specific list of targeted occupations. Instead, it offers information on sectors with the highest job vacancies and allows filtering of results by specific regions within New Brunswick. In July 2023, these sectors include:
- sales and service
- business, finance and administration
- trades, transport, and equipment operators and related roles
- law, social and community government services
- health occupations.
Newfoundland and Labrador
The Newfoundland and Labrador Provincial Nominee Program (NLPNP) categorizes its in-demand occupations into four broad groups:
- healthcare occupations (physicians and clinical psychologists)
- information communications technology occupations (software developers and AI developers)
- technical specialist occupations (security specialists and offshore technicians)
- aquaculture occupations (captains and farming and feeding managers).
In the Northwest Territories, similar to some other Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs), the Northwest Territories Provincial Nominee Program (NTPNP) does not maintain a specific list of targeted occupations. However, the province offers a forecast of the most sought-after jobs for the next 15 years, starting from 2019. Notably, rather than categorizing these roles by industry, the NTPNP organizes occupations based on the level of education or experience required and presents the top five roles projected to have the highest job vacancies from now until 2034. These roles encompass:
- Occupations requiring less than a high-school level of education, where the top three professions anticipated to have the most job openings over the next 15 years are janitors, caretakers and building superintendents, light duty cleaners, and cashiers.
- Occupations that necessitate a high-school level of education, with the three professions expected to have the highest job vacancies being heavy equipment operators (excluding crane operators), retail salespersons, and transport truck drivers.
- Skilled trades occupations requiring occupational certification, where the three roles with the most projected job openings are carpenters, electricians (excluding industrial and power systems), and automotive service technicians, truck and bus mechanics, and mechanical repairers.
- Occupations requiring a college diploma level of education, where the three roles expected to have the highest number of vacancies are administrative officers, administrative assistants, and social and community service workers.
- Occupations mandating a university degree level of education, with the three professions projected to have the highest job vacancies being elementary school and kindergarten teachers, registered nurses and psychiatric nurses, and secondary school teachers.
- Occupations demanding a management level of experience, where the jobs with the most significant number of anticipated vacancies include retail and wholesale trade managers, construction managers, and financial managers.
The Ontario Provincial Nominee Program (OINP) utilizes the OINP Employer Job Offer stream to extend invitations to individuals who not only possess an employment offer from an employer but also possess skills that are in demand. It’s worth noting that this stream includes various additional requirements, such as meeting a specific median wage, having relevant work experience, demonstrating language proficiency, and more.
Furthermore, the in-demand jobs are categorized in two ways: those that are in demand for positions across the entire province of Ontario and those that are in demand specifically outside of the Greater Toronto Area (GTA).
Some positions that are sought after throughout Ontario encompass roles like home support workers, caregivers, and related occupations, as well as meat cutters and fish mongers in both retail and wholesale sectors, along with construction trades helpers and laborers.
In contrast, positions that are in high demand outside of the GTA comprise machine operators specializing in mineral and metal processing, metalworking and forging machine operators, as well as mechanical assemblers and inspectors.
Prince Edward Island’s
Provincial Nominee Program (PEIPNP) focuses on the following high-demand occupations:
- Nurse’s aides, orderlies, and patient service associates.
- Transport truck drivers.
- Construction trades helpers and laborers.
- Light duty cleaners.
- Other laborers in processing, manufacturing, and utilities.
- Material handlers.
- Process control and machine operators for food and beverage processing.
- Industrial butchers and meat cutters, poultry preparers, and related workers.
Saskatchewan’s Provincial Nominee Program (SINP) does not maintain a targeted occupation list but focuses on occupations within TEER levels 0, 1, 2, and 3, excluding those on the excluded occupation list. Occupations on this list are not eligible for the SINP through the Express Entry and Occupations in Demand streams.
Yukon’s Provincial Nominee Program (YNP) also lacks a specific list of eligible occupations. Instead, it employs two streams: the Skilled Worker and Critical Impact Worker streams, which target individuals in occupations within TEER levels 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5. Both employers and employees with a Yukon job offer must apply to the program.
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