Backgrounder — Expression of Interest (EOI): Preparing for Success in 2015

The Government believes Canada can and should compete actively to attract the best and brightest newcomers to resettle here. That’s why we are getting set to treat most immigration applications in a revolutionary new way. Having a job is the best path to economic integration. EOI will select immigrants based on the skills Canadian employers need and, in turn, should they pursue citizenship, they will be welcomed as equal members of the Canadian family.

As of January 2015, the EOI system will help switch from passive processing of applications in the order we get them to a prioritized system that gets in-demand people with the skills to succeed to Canada faster than ever before.

The 2014 Immigration Levels Plan makes way for Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) to transition to this new system in January 2015 by continuing to reduce backlogs across the board. This will enable Canada to begin using EOI to identify the best candidates from day one.

EOI works in two steps.  Prospective immigrants would indicate their interest in coming to Canada by providing information electronically about their skills, work experience and other attributes. Individuals who meet certain eligibility criteria will have their “expressions of interest” placed in a pool and ranked against others already in the pool. CIC would only invite the best candidates, including those with in-demand skills or with job offers, to apply for a visa. Expressions of interest that are not chosen after a period of time may be removed from the pool. As a result, application backlogs would not accumulate and processing times will be kept to a minimum.

We will also assess applicants on a variety of other factors such as education, work experience and language ability – with a greater emphasis on the ever-changing needs of the Canadian labour market.

The Government is working with provincial and territorial partners to make EOI a success. We are also partnering with Canadian employers so they will be ready to find candidates in the EOI pool that meet their skills requirements when the domestic labour force cannot.

Further details about EOI will be communicated in due course and as they become available.

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