For years, hiring Temporary Foreign Workers (TFW) has been a lengthy and tedious process for most companies. But a recent change to the Government of Canada's TFW Program promises to make the procedure a little easier.
For those who need a refresher, the Accelerated Labour Market Opinion (ALMO) came into effect April 2012 and aims to help employers bring highly needed workers to Canada more quickly. Here are the five key things to keep in mind about the ALMO when hiring TWFs:
You still need an LMO, but it won't take as long. Any employer wanting to hire a TFW must first receive a Labour Market Opinion (LMO) from Service Canada. This document basically confirms that hiring a TFW to fill a particular position will not have a negative impact on the Canadian labour market. Given that this can be a time-consuming process, the ALMO enables eligible employers to obtain an LMO within 10 business days of submitting an application.
Past discretions will haunt you. If your company has an excellent track record of compliance with Canada's TFW Program, your eligibility for the ALMO is almost guaranteed. Eligible employers must have successfully received an LMO within the past two years and must have performed the minimum recruitment efforts required under the program. Those organizations that have been investigated due to an infraction or serious complaint will immediately be determined ineligible to receive an ALMO.
The ALMO applies to certain high-skilled workers only. Unfortunately, the recruitment process can only be hastened for employers who are looking to fill roles classified as "skilled work" under Canada's National Occupation Classification. This includes management, professional and technical occupations, among others. [link to others here needed] Employers looking to fill other roles are still required to take the traditional route.
You will need to consent to a review. Employers may be asked to demonstrate compliance with the program by providing job descriptions, payroll records, time sheets and individual TFWs' work permits and insurance policies. Human resources managers will inevitably need to rely more on their legal counsel and monitor all activities relating to their TFWs very closely.
All other criteria still stands. The ALMO expedites the process of bringing TFWs to Canada for eligible employers, but it doesn't provide any other concessions. You will still to meet all other criteria laid out in TFW program.
Wading through the paperwork and legalities involved with bringing TWFs can seem overwhelming, but these steps do help to make it more streamlined, which means that companies can address their employee needs more quickly and efficiently.
Shannon Bowen-Smed is president and CEO of BOWEN Workforce Solutions, which creates customized solutions for businesses, such as flexible workforce management and transactional human resource services, designed to positively impact the bottom line. Read her company blog at Bowenworks.ca.
Read Shannon's last column on the one tactic you need to revolutionize your recruiting efforts