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15 top foreign workers jobs in demand in Canada and their NOCs

This post lists and discusses 15 top top foreign workers jobs in-demand in Canada in 2021. We also provide you with the jobs’ respective NOCs (National Occupational Classification) codes.

The National Occupational Classification (NOC) is Canada’s national system developed to define and classify jobs.

Canada’s immigration programs use the NOC system to determine if your job/work experience is relevant under the program. 

NOC helps you to locate information about occupations found throughout Canada’s job market.

Specifically, foreign skilled job seekers use the NOC to research:

  • job descriptions
  • educational requirements
  • required skills
  • related occupations

As well, the NOC is often used by Canadian employers to help them write job descriptions, and also to identify skill requirements for new job postings.

Later in the post we show you

  1. how to apply for temporary work permit in any of these 15 top foreign workers jobs and
  2. your pathways to Canada permanent residence as a skilled worker in any job.

We also provide a link after each of the 15 top foreign workers job so that you can search for the job in Canada.

15 top foreign workers jobs in-demand in Canada

The 15 jobs top occupations for which immigrants are in high demand span across a variety of fields. They range from administrative jobs to blue collar skilled trades to white collar professions.

Some jobs are in higher demand in some Canadian provinces/territories than others. Generally, the key factor is the provinces’ relative labour needs. However, there is a general booming demand for the following sectors.

Randstad Canada reports that a surge is expected in the Canadian economy and job markets as Canada recovers from the coronavirus pandemic downturn. Remarkably, these 15 top foreign workers jobs are expected to be the fastest-growing occupations during the recovery.

As well, foreign skilled workers will benefit from pandemic-related increased adoption of remote working. Certainly, they will have increasing opportunities for jobs related to e-commerce, computer science, security and healthcare.

1. Registered nurse

Canada’s elderly population is growing, putting strain on its healthcare system. As a result, the healthcare sector in Canada is chronically understaffed.

Almost 500,000 workers are 55 years old or over, and many are retiring in the next decade. Canada is looking to immigrants to help fill these important jobs.

See Canada aims to fill health-care workers retirements with immigrants.

Also the coronavirus pandemic resulted in a desperate need for medical professionals, including nurses, in Canada.

This makes nursing certainly high on the list of 15 top foreign workers jobs in-demand in Canada.

In summary, to qualify as a practicing nurse in Canada,

Firstly, you will need a degree or diploma as a registered nursing

Secondly, you will also need to take some professional courses and management studies

And thirdly, you will need to register with a regulatory body in the province or territory where you desire to work.

See Internationally Educated Nurses (IEN) can qualify to work in Canada – Guidelines.

Average salary: $76,362

NOC code: 3012

Find a nursing job in Canada

2. Sales Associate

Sales associates, or sales representatives, are the most in demand job in Canada in 2021. Not surprising that they are in the top 15 foreigners in-demand jobs in Canada.

Sale associates and sales representatives are crucial in the economy. Both in terms of selling to the consumer and also selling to other businesses.

Businesses count on talented salespeople to move products off shelves and into customers’ hands. Innate sales ability and an outgoing personality will help you succeed in this field. .

Average salary: $50,255

NOC Code: 6411

Find a sales associate job in Canada

3. Commercial vehicle driver

Drivers of all kinds are in demand in Canada. From long-haul drivers, to delivery drivers, to forklift drivers.

If you know how to drive a commercial vehicle, your skills are highly sought-after by employers.

Having a commercial vehicle driver’s license, or a certification to operate forklifts will make you highly in demand in this occupation.

Average salary: $44,836

NOC Code(s): 7511, 7521, 7452

Find a driver job in Canada

4. Receptionist

Receptionists are traditionally in high demand as the first face customers see at any business, although demand suffered during the pandemic office lockdowns.

Receptionists make the critical first impression at a place of business.

Although customer service is clearly an important element of being a great receptionist, basic tech-skills are also in demand in this field. Knowledge of telephone systems and computer programs that log customer information are a key part of any modern receptionist job.

Average salary: $31,304

NOC Code: 1414

Find receptionist jobs in Canada

5. Welders are #1 on top foreign workers jobs in demand in Canada?

Yes Canada needs welders! In fact welders are Canada’s most in-demand skilled trade.

Not surprisingly, this field is among contenders for #1 1n the 15 top foreign workers jobs in demand in Canada.

Most certainly, it is well worth considering if you are someone who likes working with their hands.

Average salary: $40,927

NOC Code: 7327

Find a welder job in Canada

6. Web Developer

The tech sector remains the fastest growing in Canada. So it’s no surprise that developers are one of the top foreign workers jobs in demand professions.

Web developers are experts in code. They build everything from websites to computer programs to apps on your phone.

Canada provides two-week fast track processing of work permit applications by web developers under the Canada Global Talent Stream.

Average salary: $62,522

NOC Code: 2175

Find a developer job in Canada

7. Business development manager

Business development managers typically fall under the sales umbrella in job descriptions. They’re typically responsible for bringing in new business and developing strategies to help the salespeople close deals with new clients.

Business development managers are also frequently involved in relationship building and big picture strategizing.

Average salary: $85,000

NOC Code: 4163

Find a business development job in Canada

8. General labourer

General labourers are in very high demand all over Canada. They are the jack-of-all-trades in the Canadian labour market.

They fill in gaps in the workforce, completing whatever tasks need to be done to keep businesses running. From cleaning, to moving materials, to general handiwork.

Being a general labourer requires hard work, determination and the ability to take on physically demanding tasks.

Average salary: $29,250

NOC Code: 7611

Find a general labourer job in Canada

9. Project manager

Canada needs project managers in a range of sectors, including IT, engineering and marketing.

Project managers typically have a background in the field they’re working in. However, they also have project management expertise. They have the ability to juggle complex projects, effectively managing budgets and people.

Project managers with a project management professional (PMP) certification are especially in demand in this post-pandemic economic recovery.

Average salary: $90,000

NOC codes: 0211, 0213, 0711, 1221

Find a project manager job in Canada

10. Heavy-duty mechanic

Heavy-duty mechanics work with large machinery in maintenance and repair in several sectors vital to Canada’s economy. For instance, such sectors as manufacturing, energy and construction.

Heavy duty mechanics do exactly what it sounds like they do. They work with heavy machinery, ensuring it’s well maintained and repaired as needed.

Average salary: $70,000

NOC Code: 7312

Find a heavy duty mechanic job in Canada

11. Merchandiser

Merchandisers work for retail store. They decide which new inventory to bring in and how it should be presented on the shop floor.

If you’ve ever stepped foot into a retail store, you’ve experienced the work of a merchandiser.

With the pandemic-time boom of online shopping here to stay, merchandisers will remain in hot demand.

As well, Canadian retailers are counting on merchandisers to build positive retail experiences that keep customers coming to brick-and-mortar stores.

Average salary: $48,610

NOC Code: 6222

Find a merchandizer job in Canada

12. Electrical engineer

Electricity is crucial to Canada’s economy as it is to any modern economy. From designing electronics, to working in the energy sector, to telecommunications.

Electrical engineers are responsible for designing products and systems that have electricity running through them.

The skills of an electrical engineer have countless applications in our modern tech-obsessed world.

Consequently, although most engineering disciplines are experiencing workers shortages, electrical engineers are particularly in demand.

Average salary: $77,424

NOC Code: 2133

Find an electrical engineer job in Canada

13. Accountant

Accountants are money management experts. They oversee budgets and spending for either individuals and corporations, depending on their role.

There are also many in demand specializations within the accounting field. They include for example payroll, accounts payable and receivable, taxation, government, and auditing, among others.

A CPA designation remains the gold standard in the accounting field in Canada. It will all but guarantee you have employers lining up at your door.

Average salary: $57,500

NOC code:  0111, 1111

Find an accounting job in Canada

14. HR manager 

Human resources managers are highly in-demand in Canada. For the past few years, Canada’s companies have competed fiercely to recruit top talent.

HR managers have responsibility for recruiting the right talent in Canada’s competitive job market.

The demand for HR managers will get hotter as the economy and hiring surge post-pandemic.

HR managers are responsible for setting the direction of their organization’s HR policies. They are accountable to ensure that current employees are happy and engaged. At the same time they are tasked with bringing in a steady pipeline of talent to fill new roles.

Average salary: $77,900

NOC Code: 0112

Find HR manager job in Canada

15. Financial advisor

Financial advisors are money specialists who help individuals and families day-to-day finances and investments.

Professional financial advisors typically work in banks.

Financial advisor is a fairly entry-level role in the finance sector. Therefore, it’s a great job to get your foot in the door if you’re hoping to develop a career in finance.

Average salary: $57,410

NOC code: 0111, 1114

Find a financial advisor job in Canada

So how do you get a Canada work permit for these jobs?

The process for obtaining a Canadian work permit varies greatly. Above all, it depends on which type of work permit you seek.

In general, you need to apply for a work permit from outside Canada through Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) or a Canadian visa office.

  • Firstly, you need to get a job offer from a Canadian employer before you apply
  • Secondly, the employer must apply for a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) from Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC)
  • Thirdly, ESDC will decide whether the employer can hire a foreign worker to fill the job

Applicants for LMIA-exempt jobs still need to submit a variety of documentation to be granted entry to Canada. For more information, go to Working Temporarily in Canada on the IRCC website.

If you are looking for a job, certain positions in Canada may require a person to know their National Occupation Classification Code (NOC Code). This code is used to classify all types of employment by Canadian standards.

As well, there are special work permits for some kinds of workers. For example, there are special work permit programs for caregiversbusiness people and agricultural workers.

General eligibility requirements to get Canada work permit

No matter where you apply, you must:

  • prove to an officer that you will leave Canada when your work permit expires,
  • show that you have enough money to take care of yourself and your family members during your stay in Canada and to return home,
  • obey the law and have no record of criminal activity (IRCC may ask you to give a police clearance certificate),
  • not be a danger to Canada’s security,
  • be in good health and have a medical exam, if needed,
  • not plan to work for an employer listed with the status “ineligible” on the list of employers who failed to comply with the conditions,
  • not plan to work for an employer who, on a regular basis, offers for example striptease, erotic dance, escort services or erotic massages, and
  • give the officer any other documents they ask for to prove you can enter the country.

Types of Canada work permits

There are two general pathways for obtaining a Canadian work permit: a closed work permit and an open work permit.

Closed work permits are tied to specific employers. This means that you must remain working with the same employer at the same location your permit is changed. In contrast, open permit allows you to work with any employer anywhere in Canada.

Bridging Open Work Permit (BOWP)

You may be eligible for a Bridging Open Work Permit (BOWP). BOWP is issued to bridge the gap between the expiry of the work permit and the final decision on your PR application.

To be eligible for a BOWP an applicant must:

  • be currently in Canada
  • have valid work permit that is due to expire within the next four months
  • already have submitted application for permanent residence as main applicant
  • have submitted an application for an open work permit which includes the processing fee.

Canada work permit Application processing stages

Canada work permit processing time completely depends on accuracy and completeness of your application. It can take between 2 weeks to 4 months approximately to process a Canadian work permit.

  1. Employer applies for Labour Market Impact Assessment
  2. Employer extends Temporary Job Offer
  3. Foreign Worker applies for Work Permit
  4. Work Permit is issued

Global Skills Strategy’s two-week application processing

However, you can start working in Canada faster through the Canada Global Skills Strategy. If you qualify, IRCC processes most eligible work permit applications within two weeks.

See also Get Canada work permit in two weeks with Canada’s Global Skills Strategy.

If you need an LMIA, you will qualify for two-week processing if you meet all of these requirements:

  • you are applying from outside Canada
  • you have a positive LMIA through the Global Talent Stream of the Temporary Foreign Worker Program. This will be on the LMIA decision letter

If you don’t need an LMIA, you will be eligible for two-week processing if you meet all of these requirements:

  • you are applying from outside Canada
  • your job is either skill type 0 (managerial) or skill level A (professional) in the National Occupational Classification system
  • your employer has submitted an offer of employment using the government’s Employer Portal and also paid the employer compliance fee

To clarify, Express Entry International Experience Canada applicants are not eligible.


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