Express Entry is a Canadian online system that manages skilled worker applications from three different programs – the Canadian Experience Class (CEC), Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP), and Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP). It is also one of the main pathways responsible for bringing international skilled workers to Canada through permanent residence.
Therefore, we should share the changes that will be implemented with Express Entry in Q1 2023.
Express Entry Changes
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has announced its intention to begin conducting targeted Express Entry draws in 2023 in order to address the nation’s specific labour shortages.
In these Express Entry draws, made possible by Bill C-19, candidates will be targeted based on their occupation, language, and education in order to find those who will best contribute to Canada’s growth and prosperity. Immigration Minister Sean Fraser explained that the current Express Entry all-program draws fail to attract foreign nationals with the most in-demand skills and qualifications.
As of the time of writing, IRCC had not decided on the specific occupation, language, or educational credential categories that would be used to determine the structure of these new draws. However, it is stating that it will “consult a wide range of stakeholders to inform new categories in Express Entry” to ultimately decide on the details.
Currently, IRCC will continue to organize Express Entry draws as usual. Every two weeks, a dynamic number of invitations to apply (ITAs) will be given out to applicants who applied through the three Express Entry programs – CEC, FSWP, or FSTP – based on their CRS scores.
CRS scores have always been Canada’s essential point for selecting Express Entry applicants. Scores are currently used to rank Canadian immigration hopefuls based on several factors, including age, official language proficiency, and Canadian work experience, and ITAs are sent out accordingly.
By Q1 2023, the Express Entry system will move away from focusing on CRS scores and conduct draws that allow Canada to better address specific areas of labour market need and weakness. It is the goal of these targeted draws to strengthen Canada’s labour market and hopefully increase retention rates among those who settle in specific communities, as people are coming to places where they know they have opportunities based on the invitation to apply, according to Fraser.