Express Entry Year-End Report 2016

Express Entry Year-End Report 2016

Express Entry Overview

Express Entry is Canada’s application management system for certain economic programs including the Federal Skilled Worker Program, Federal Skilled Trades Program, Canadian Experience Class and a portion of the Provincial Nominee Program. Potential candidates express their interest in immigrating to Canada by first completing a profile online that is then pre-assessed to see if they meet criteria of one of the three federal immigration programs mentioned above. Candidates who meet these criteria are given a score by the system based on the information in their profile and ranked against others who also meet these same criteria. Only the candidates with top scores get an invitation to apply for permanent residence.

Express Entry was designed with three main objectives in mind: 1) flexibility in selection and application management, 2) responsiveness to labour market and regional needs and 3) speed in application processing. In its two years of operation, Express Entry has met its objectives.

In 2016, almost 34,000 invitations to apply for permanent residence were issued to Express Entry candidates representing an increase of 3,000 from 2015. Since the launch of Express Entry, a total of 43,202 individuals (applicants and their families) have been admitted to Canada as permanent residents. Key findings indicate that these applicants are highly skilled immigrants and many have studied in fields related to science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. The top ten occupations of these permanent residents included software and computer engineering fields.

Provinces, territories and employers have successfully used Express Entry to fill regional and labour market needs. Express Entry increases the labour market responsiveness of the immigration system by providing employers with a greater role through job offers to candidates which, if all conditions are met, increases their chances of receiving an invitation to apply.

In addition, the processing time commitment of six months for 80% of cases has been met and Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) will continue to monitor the performance of Express Entry and make adjustments as necessary.

To ensure a more fair and responsive immigration system that addresses emerging needs and long-term economic growth for Canada, targeted improvements were made to Express Entry on November 19, 2016. These improvements include the following:

  • Reducing the number of points awarded for job offers to 50 points to candidates with a valid job offer in a National Occupational Classification (NOC) 0, A or B occupation and 200 points to candidates with a valid job offer in a NOC 00 occupation; this change rebalances the Comprehensive Ranking System and allows for more highly skilled candidates to receive an invitation to apply;
  • Awarding points for job offer to certain candidates already in Canada on Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) exempt work permits. For example, candidates who are here under the North American Free Trade Agreement, a federal provincial agreement or Mobilité Francophone no longer need to obtain a LMIA to be awarded job offer points. These candidates must meet certain criteria, such as at least one year of work experience from the same employer who is providing their job offer;
  • Changing the job offer requirement from indeterminate to one year; this allows for more highly skilled candidates working in contract-based industries to have a higher likelihood of receiving an invitation to apply for permanent residence;
  • Awarding 15 points for a one- to two-year diploma or certificate and 30 points for a degree, diploma or certificate of three years or longer, or for a Master’s, professional or doctoral degree of at least one academic year; these changes allow for more former international students, which are a key source of candidates because of their age, education, skills and experience, to be able to transition to permanent residence using Express Entry;
  • Finally, providing 90 days, instead of the previous 60 days, to candidates to complete their application for permanent residence after they receive an invitation to apply.

Express Entry Results to Date

In January and February 2016, IRCC held regular invitation rounds issuing about 1,500 invitations per round. As planned, smaller invitation rounds (between 750 and 1,000) were held between March and August 2016 to allow the department to continue processing applications received prior to the launch of Express Entry. During these months, a larger share of foreign nationals with a job offer or a Provincial Nomination were invited as they were awarded an additional 600 points. In doing so, a smaller share of candidates without either a job offer or a Provincial Nomination received an invitation to apply for permanent residence.

In September 2016, invitation round sizes began to grow reaching close to 3,000 invitations per round by December 2016. During this time, improvements to Express Entry were also implemented. These changes have helped to attract top talent in the world, including former international students, experienced professionals and talented workers who will strengthen Canada’s competitiveness in the global marketplace.

The Express Entry pool is now the main source of permanent residence applications in the economic immigration category of the Immigration Levels Plan.

Express Entry Profiles Submitted to the Express Entry Pool

Those who meet the criteria of one of the federal immigration programs managed by the Express Entry system (i.e. Federal Skilled Worker, Canadian Experience Class and Federal Skilled Trades Program) are accepted into a pool of candidates. Provincial Nominees participating in Express Entry must also meet the criteria of one of these three immigration programs.

As of January 3, 2017, a total of 353,230 Express Entry profiles were submitted by foreign nationals since launched on January 1, 2015. Of these, 170,221 were found not eligible because they did not meet the criteria of at least one of the three programs; 1,554 were pending pool entry due to Job Bank registration or verification of their Provincial Nomination by a province or territory requirement; 64,938 were in the pool as active candidates or with an outstanding invitation to apply; and the remaining 116,517 profiles have exited the pool.

Exit from the Express Entry pool can occur due to a variety of factors:

  • A profile expires (47,859 profiles expired as of January 3, 2017) because it has reached the 1-year expiry limit or a candidate does not decline an invitation to apply and does not submit an application within the 90-day mandatory periodFootnote 1;
  • A profile is withdrawn from the pool by a candidate (27,192 as of January 3, 2017);
  • An invited candidate successfully submits an application for permanent residence (41,466 applications as of January 3, 2017);
  • A candidate becomes ineligible (e.g. the candidate’s language test expires).
Table 1.1: Cumulative Profiles submitted to the Express Entry Pool
Status of profiles As of January 3, 2016 As of January 3, 2017
Submitted 188,262 353,230
Not eligible 88,048 170,221
Pending 1,303 1,554
Table 1.2: Cumulative Profiles accepted in the Express Entry Pool
Status of profiles As of January 3, 2016 As of January 3, 2017
Active candidates 60,042 58,328
Invitation to apply outstanding 3,895 6,610
Table 1.3: Cumulative Profiles no longer in the Express Entry Pool
Status of profiles As of January 3, 2016 As of January 3, 2017
Expired 2,656 47,859
Withdrawn from the pool 13,684 27,192
Applications submitted for processing 18,634 41,466

Total applications submitted for permanent residence in years 2015 and 2016 excludes cancelled cases.

Composition of the Express Entry Pool

Express Entry automatically assigns a Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score to candidates who submit a profile. A candidate’s CRS score is divided into two portions. The candidate’s “core” CRS score can reach a maximum of 600 points and it is based on the candidate’s age, education, official language proficiency, work experience, and a combination of these human capital attributes. An additional 600 points is awarded to the candidate if they meet policy or other objectives such as having a provincial nomination, a job offer, or obtained education in Canada above high school. A candidate’s maximum CRS score is 1,200 points. All information is self-reported and must be supported with appropriate documentation at the application stage or the candidate will be refused.

Candidates in the pool are ranked according to their CRS score at the time of an invitation round. CRS scores may change as a candidate’s circumstances change. For example, a candidate could complete another post-secondary degree, gain more work experience or be nominated by a province or territory. The Express Entry pool is dynamic and a candidate’s rank may change as other candidates join and leave the pool.

Candidates with higher CRS scores have a higher likelihood of being invited. The CRS score distribution of candidates in the pool as of January 3, 2017, is presented in Table 2. This distribution is made up of candidates with a wide range of scores based on their human capital attributes and additional points.

Table 2: Comprehensive Ranking System Score Distribution of Candidates in the Express Entry Pool as of January 3, 2017
Comprehensive Ranking System Score Number of candidates
>1000 401
950 - 999 63
900 - 949 19
850 - 899 2
800 - 849 0
750 - 799 1
700 - 749 0
650 - 699 2
600 - 649 2
550 - 599 11
500 - 549 136
450 - 499 7,009
400 - 449 14,041
440 - 449 2,815
430 - 439 3,140
420 - 429 2,262
410 - 419 2,718
400 - 409 3,106
350 - 399 19,716
390 - 399 3,053
380 - 389 3,585
370 - 379 4,304
360 - 369 4,304
350 - 359 4,470
300 - 349 14,488
340 - 349 4,278
330 - 339 3,702
320 - 329 2,990
310 - 319 2,144
300 - 309 1,374
250 - 299 1,949
200 - 249 289
150 - 199 127
100 - 149 54
<100 18
Total 58,328

The above table provides a snapshot of the Express Entry pool as of January 3, 2017, but it is important to note that the pool is dynamic with candidates entering and leaving the pool daily.

It is important to note that the distribution of the pool changes each time a new candidate enters or leaves the Express Entry pool. On January 3, 2017, about 7,600 candidates had a CRS score above 450. Since then, large rounds have taken place; most of these candidates have been invited, lowering the CRS cut-off, which is the CRS score of lowest-ranked candidate invited.

As a result of the improvements implemented on November 19, 2016, all candidates in the pool were re-ranked based on the new CRS structure. Many candidates that once had a CRS score above 600 for a job offer were reallocated into a CRS score range below 500. As a result, CRS score ranges in the high 400s are now considered to be more competitive.

To improve their rank in the pool, and if applicable, candidates are encouraged to update their profile and obtain additional points for a job offer, and education obtained in Canada. Candidates can also try to increase their CRS score by providing an Educational Credential Assessment for their education acquired abroad, provide language test results for their second language proficiency, and provide information on their spouse or partner’s education and language proficiency.

Results of Express Entry Invitation Rounds to Apply for Permanent Residence

The following tables display the distribution of those invited by additional point type, across economic immigration program, top ten occupations, country of residence, and country of citizenship. Over time, we expect these distributions to continue to change as the size of invitation rounds remains constant and progressively lowers the CRS cut-off.

The first round in 2016 invited a larger than usual share of Provincial Nominees resulting in a minimum CRS score above 450. During the last three months of 2015, the share of Provincial Nominees increased in the pool. Some of these candidates were nominated after the last round in 2015 and stayed in the pool until the first round of 2016. For rounds in January and February 2016, invitation round sizes were stable at around 1,500. The minimum CRS score hovered just above 450.

Between March and August 2016, IRCC held small and regular invitation rounds. This allowed the department to continue processing permanent residence applications received prior to the launch of Express Entry. Smaller invitation rounds led to a higher CRS cut-off and in some rounds, it was above 500. Starting in September 2016, processing of these applications was well advanced and invitation round sizes began to increase. By the last invitation round of 2016, close to 3,000 invitations were issued. Express Entry is now the main source of permanent residence applications to meet annual immigration levels targets for Canadian Experience Class, Federal Skilled Workers and Federal Skilled Trades.

Candidates may be eligible to be invited in more than one program. At the time an invitation is sent, IRCC invites candidates to apply to a specific program. Those who are eligible for more than one program are invited according to a hierarchy established by IRCC. Prior to March 9, 2016, the hierarchy was Federal Skilled Workers (FSW), Canadian Experience Class (CEC) and Federal Skilled Trades (FST). Candidates nominated by a province or territory are only invited as provincial nominees (PNP). For the remainder of 2016, based on clients’ feedback and in order to meet IRCC’s commitment to process a permanent resident application in 6 months, a shift was made to invite candidates first as CEC, next as FSW and lastly as FST. This precedent does not affect who is invited as it does not change the CRS score. The exact same candidates would be invited regardless of the program hierarchy.

Table 3: Invitations Issued by Additional Point Type
Round Date Comprehensive Ranking System Cut-off Invitations Issued Job Offer Canadian Study Job Offer and Canadian Study No Additional Points Provincial Nominees
1 Jan. 6 461 1,463 398 N/A N/A 524 541
2 Jan. 13 453 1,518 244 N/A N/A 1,142 132
3 Jan. 27 457 1,468 510 N/A N/A 620 338
5 Feb. 10 459 1,505 493 N/A N/A 708 304
6 Feb. 24 453 1,484 476 N/A N/A 801 207
7 Mar. 9 473 1,013 524 N/A N/A 299 190
8 Mar. 23 470 1,014 456 N/A N/A 403 155
9 Apr. 6 470 954 423 N/A N/A 391 140
10 Apr. 20 468 1,018 454 N/A N/A 504 60
11 May. 6 534 799 529 N/A N/A 5 265
12 May. 18 484 763 361 N/A N/A 264 138
13 Jun. 1 483 762 453 N/A N/A 163 146
14 Jun. 15 488 752 437 N/A N/A 129 186
15 Jun. 29 482 773 436 N/A N/A 232 105
16 Jul. 13 482 747 380 N/A N/A 200 167
17 Jul. 27 488 755 442 N/A N/A 108 205
18 Aug. 10 490 754 409 N/A N/A 155 190
19 Aug. 24 538 750 448 N/A N/A 4 298
20 Sep. 7 491 1,000 375 N/A N/A 265 361
21 Sep. 21 483 1,288 442 N/A N/A 434 411
22 Oct. 12 484 1,518 594 N/A N/A 292 632
23 Oct. 19 475 1,804 162 N/A N/A 1,446 196
24 Nov. 2 472 2,080 433 N/A N/A 969 678
25 Nov. 16 470 2,427 916 N/A N/A 890 621
26 Nov. 30Footnote 2 786 559 0 0 0 0 559
27 Dec. 16 497 1,936 363 360 67 108 1,038
28 Dec. 22 475 2,878 281 1,475 42 545 535
Total: 33,782 11,439 1,835 109 11,601 8,798
Table 4: Invitations Issued by Economic Immigration Program
Round Date Comprehensive Ranking System Cut-off Invitations Issued Provincial Nominees Federal Skilled Workers Federal Skilled Trades Canadian Experience Class
1 Jan. 6 461 1,463 541 553 43 326
2 Jan. 13 453 1,518 132 987 26 373
3 Jan. 27 457 1,468 338 625 62 443
5 Feb. 10 459 1,505 304 712 46 443
6 Feb. 24 453 1,484 207 779 72 426
7 Mar. 9 473 1,013 190 153 54 616
8 Mar. 23 470 1,014 155 249 55 555
9 Apr. 6 470 954 140 199 60 555
10 Apr. 20 468 1,018 60 272 72 614
11 May. 6 534 799 265 94 86 354
12 May. 18 484 763 138 91 49 485
13 Jun. 1 483 762 146 80 59 477
14 Jun. 15 488 752 186 94 68 404
15 Jun. 29 482 773 105 125 62 481
16 Jul. 13 482 747 167 95 63 422
17 Jul. 27 488 755 205 94 61 395
18 Aug. 10 490 754 190 94 69 401
19 Aug. 24 538 750 298 86 72 294
20 Sep. 7 491 1,000 360 97 53 490
21 Sep. 21 483 1,288 412 113 77 686
22 Oct. 12 484 1,518 632 142 90 654
23 Oct. 19 475 1,804 196 885 23 700
24 Nov. 2 472 2,080 678 537 58 807
25 Nov. 16 470 2,427 621 620 170 1,016
26 Nov. 30Footnote 3 786 559 559 0 0 0
27 Dec. 16 497 1,936 1,038 49 0 849
28 Dec. 22 475 2,878 535 507 0 1,836
Total: 33,782 8,798 8,332 1,550 15,102
Table 5: Candidates in the Express Entry Pool as January 3, 2017 and Invitations Issued in 2016 by Total CRS Score
Comprehensive Ranking System Score Number of  Candidates in the Express Entry Pool Number of Invitations Issued in 2016
>1000 401 6,225
950 - 999 63 3,715
900 - 949 19 3,452
850 - 899 2 1,731
800 - 849 0 1,639
750 - 799 1 1,426
700 - 749 0 1,018
650 - 699 2 324
600 - 649 2 107
550 - 599 11 55
500 - 549 136 2,162
450 - 499 7,009 11,928
400 - 449 14,041 0
350 - 399 19,716 0
300 - 349 14,488 0
250 - 299 1,949 0
200 - 249 289 0
150 - 199 127 0
100 -149 54 0
<100 18 0
Total 58,328 33,782

Table 5 above depicts the distribution of active candidates in the Express Entry pool and invitations issued, broken down by total CRS score.

Chart 1: Candidates in the Express Entry Pool as of January 3, 2017 and Invitations Issued in 2016 by “core” CRS score
Chart 1, description following
Text version of Chart 1
Core CRS Score Invited candidates with a job offer, Canadian study or provincial/territorial nomination in 2016 Invited candidates without a job offer, Canadian study or provincial/territorial nomination in 2016 Active Candidates
<100 395 0 33
100 -149 1,019 0 89
150 - 199 1,427 0 175
200 - 249 1,638 0 317
250 - 299 1,738 0 1,985
300 - 349 3,452 0 14,529
350 - 399 3,740 0 19,829
400 - 449 5,369 0 14,491
450 - 499 3,234 10,002 6,783
500 - 549 169 1,588 95
550 - 599 0 11 2
Total 22,181 11,601 58,328

Chart 1 above shows the distribution of active candidates in the Express Entry pool and invitations issued, broken down “core” CRS points and whether or not additional points were awarded. The core CRS score indicates a candidate’s score without the additional points for a provincial nomination, a job offer, or education obtained in Canada above high school.

Prior to November 19, 2016, the 600 additional points awarded for a job offer often made it difficult for some highly skilled candidates without job offers to get an invitation to apply. The core CRS score for candidates invited with additional points are often lower than the core CRS of those without any additional points. Candidates with 600 additional points awarded for a job offer did not have strong incentive to declare all of their qualifications since the job offer guaranteed an invitation to apply for permanent residence. Since job offer points are reduced, all candidates are now encouraged to declare all of their qualifications to raise their ranking in the pool.

Lowering the job offer points will allow more candidates whose skills and experience will support our economy to be invited to apply for permanent residence.

Round Results: Occupations of Invited Candidates

Express Entry facilitates a more direct employer role in the immigration process. Employers may connect with foreign nationals through recruitment techniques such as private job boards, recruiters, or job fairs and they can give candidates a job offer that will elevate a candidate’s ranking. The foreign national must become an Express Entry candidate before receiving an invitation to apply.

As economic immigration programs are designed for high skilled immigration, all job offers are in professional or skilled trade occupations as defined by the National Occupational Classification (NOC) maintained by Employment and Social Development Canada. Prior to November 19, 2016, all job offers in the Express Entry system were awarded 600 additional points.

As of November 19, 2016, candidates with valid job offers are awarded 50 points for job offers in a NOC 0, A or B occupation, while a total of 200 points are awarded for job offers classified as NOC 00. The occupation mix of invited candidates has been influenced by invitation round sizes, and improvements made to Express Entry starting in November 2016.

Table 6.1: Invited Candidates by Occupation in 2015
Occupation Number %
NOC6311 - Food Service Supervisors 2,356 8%
NOC6322 - Cooks 2,295 8%
NOC2171 - Information Systems Analysts and Consultants 1,255 4%
NOC2173 - Software Engineers 940 3%
NOC2174 - Computer Programmers and Interactive Media Developers 935 3%
NOC4011 - University Professors and Lecturers 745 3%
NOC6211 - Retail Sales Supervisors 669 2%
NOC5241 - Graphic Designers and Illustrators 550 2%
NOC1111 - Financial Auditors and Accountants 494 2%
NOC1112 – Financial and Investment Analysts 446 2%
Top 10 10,685 38%

The total number of invitations issued in 2015 was 31,063. Candidates may be invited more than once if they decline their first invitation. The results in this and the following tables on candidates invited omit duplicate invitations. Hence, 28,318 unique candidates have received invitations in 2015.

Table 6.2: Invited Candidates by Occupation in 2016
Occupation Number %
NOC2171 - Information Systems Analysts and Consultants 1,792 6%
NOC2173 - Software Engineers 1,332 4%
NOC2174 - Computer Programmers and Interactive Media Developers 1,254 4%
NOC6322 - Cooks 1,234 4%
NOC6311 - Food Service Supervisors 999 3%
NOC4011 - University Professors and Lecturers 797 3%
NOC5241 - Graphic Designers and Illustrators 671 2%
NOC1123 - Professional Occupations in Advertising, Marketing and Public relations 618 2%
NOC1111 - Financial Auditors and Accountants 595 2%
NOC6211 - Retail Sales Supervisors 584 2%
Top 10 9,876 31%

The total number of invitations issued in 2016 was 33,782. Candidates may be invited more than once if they decline their first invitation. The results in this and the following tables on candidates invited omit duplicate invitations. Hence, 31,676 unique candidates have received invitations in 2016.

Candidates working as food service supervisors (NOC 6311) or cooks (NOC 6322) were the largest group of invited candidates in 2015 followed by IT professionals (NOC 21), business and finance professionals (NOC 11) or university professors (NOC 40). Those in occupation group service supervisors and specialized service occupations (NOC 63) were more likely to have a lower human capital and a valid job offer while those in NOC 11, 21 and 40 often have high human capital with no valid job offer (their CRS score were in the 450-599 range).

In 2016, candidates working as IT professionals (NOC 21) were the largest group of invited candidates followed by cooks (NOC 6322) and food service supervisors (NOC 6311). Retail sales supervisors (NOC 6211) ranked 10th in 2016. Between March and August 2016, when invitation rounds were smaller, larger shares of candidates in occupation group NOC 63 were invited as they were more likely to have an additional 600 points for a valid job offer. In September 2016, when invitation round sizes began to grow, candidates with higher human capital but without a valid job offer, such as those in occupation groups NOC 11, 21 and 40, were invited in greater numbers. Since November 19, 2016, this trend has become even more pronounced and only a small number of candidates in occupation group NOC 63 have been invited.

Round Results: Country of Residence and of Origin of Invited Candidates

In 2015 and 2016, Canada was the main country of residence for invited candidates because of the high number of temporary foreign workers with a job offer that wished to settle in Canada permanently. The country of citizenship reflects the origin of qualified candidates from the pool. It is anticipated that the top ten countries of residence, and to a lesser extend of citizenship of invited candidate will continue to change throughout 2017 as the CRS cut-off progressively lowers.

Table 7.1: Invited Candidates by Country of Residence in 2015
Country of Residence Number %
Canada 22,111 78%
India 1,745 6%
United States 622 2%
China 409 1%
United Kingdom 294 1%
Philippines 283 1%
Nigeria 248 1%
United Arab Emirates 213 1%
Pakistan 159 1%
France 135 1%
Top 10 26,219 93%
Table 7.2: Invited Candidates by Country of Residence in 2016
Country of Residence Number %
Canada 21,764 69%
India 3,266 10%
United States 832 3%
China 484 2%
United Arab Emirates 432 1%
Nigeria 406 1%
United Kingdom 383 1%
Philippines 370 1%
Pakistan 307 1%
South Africa, Republic Of 216 1%
Top 10 28,460 90%

The total number of invitations issued in 2015 was 31,063 and 33,782 in 2016. Candidates may be invited more than once if they decline their first invitation. The results in this and the following tables on candidates invited omit duplicate invitations. Hence, 28,318 unique candidates have received invitations in 2015 and 31,676 in 2016.

Table 8.1.1: Invited Candidates by Country of Citizenship in 2015
Country of Citizenship Number %
India 6,348 22%
Philippines 3,574 13%
China 1,678 6%
United Kingdom 1,644 6%
Ireland, Republic Of 1,210 4%
United States 949 3%
Nigeria 609 2%
Korea, South 605 2%
France 566 2%
Australia 540 2%
Top 10 17,723 63%
Table 8.1.2: Invited Candidates by Country of Citizenship in 2016
Country of Citizenship Number %
India 10,499 33%
China 2,659 8%
Philippines 1,593 5%
United Kingdom 1,395 4%
United States 1,155 4%
Ireland, Republic Of 1,095 3%
Nigeria 1,001 3%
Pakistan 898 3%
Korea, South 786 2%
France 777 2%
Top 10 21,858 69%

The total number of invitations issued in 2015 was 31,063 and 33,782 in 2016. Candidates may be invited more than once if they decline their first invitation. The results in this and the following tables on candidates invited omit duplicate invitations. Hence, 28,318 unique candidates have received invitations in 2015 and 31,676 in 2016.

Table 8.2: FSW, CEC and FST Program Intake in 2014 by Country of Citizenship
2014 Intake (CEC, FSW and FST) %
India 34%
China 10%
Pakistan 8%
Nigeria 7%
Bangladesh 5%
United Kingdom 4%
Iran 3%
Egypt 3%
United States 2%
Top 10 77%

Compared with FSW, CEC and FST applications for permanent residence received in 2014, there have been changes in country of origin for invited candidates (e.g. India remained at the top while there were shifts in other countries). Among many possible factors that can explain the shift in country of origin is the structure of the CRS and its emphasis on language proficiency and educational credentials.

Applications for Permanent Residence through Express Entry

IRCC received a total of 41,466 applications (cases) for permanent residence in 2015 and 2016 from candidates who were invited to apply, which represents 78,015 total persons (applicants and their family members). About 26% (20,072 total persons) of these applications are still in progress but 53,762 people were approved resulting in 50,219 visas issued and 43,202 admissions to Canada.

Table 9: Aggregate Data on Applications for Permanent Residence Received Through Express Entry Between January 1, 2015 and December 31, 2016 (Total Persons)
Application Received Applications in Progress Applications Approved Visas Issued Admissions
78,015 20,072 53,762 50,219 43,202

Total applications received for permanent residence in years 2015 and 2016 excludes cancelled cases.

Applications in progress as of January 19, 2017.

Table 10.1: Applications for Permanent Residence Received (Total Persons) by Province of Destination in 2015
Province of Destination PNP Other
(CEC, FSW & FST)
All Programs
Alberta 0 14,905 14,905
British Columbia 1,526 4,458 5,984
Manitoba 210 227 437
New Brunswick 216 65 281
Newfoundland 0 102 102
Northwest Territories 7 36 43
Nova Scotia 1,014 224 1,238
Nunavut 0 19 19
Ontario 998 9,834 10,832
Prince Edward Island 231 18 249
Quebec 0 0 0
Saskatchewan 758 446 1,204
Yukon 0 9 9
Total 4,960 30,343 35,303

Total applications received for permanent residence in 2015 excludes cancelled cases.

Table 10.2: Applications for Permanent Residence Received (Total Persons) by Province of Destination in 2016
Province of Destination PNP Other
(CEC, FSW & FST)
All Programs
Alberta 2 9,176 9,178
British Columbia 2,672 6,973 9,645
Manitoba 60 253 313
New Brunswick 1,076 107 1,183
Newfoundland 10 113 123
Northwest Territories 25 20 45
Nova Scotia 2,135 251 2,386
Nunavut 0 4 4
Ontario 3,254 12,112 15,366
Prince Edward Island 871 38 909
Quebec 0 0 0
Saskatchewan 3,185 356 3,541
Yukon 2 17 19
Total 13,292 29,420 42,712

Total applications received for permanent residence in 2016 excludes cancelled cases.

The majority of Express Entry candidates who submitted a permanent resident application to IRCC chose Alberta, British Columbia, or Ontario as their province of destination. This aligns with destination provinces prior to Express Entry and has been explained by a combination of community connections, services, infrastructure, and jobs.

Express Entry Processing Times

The processing time standard for applications sourced via Express Entry is six months for 80% of cases. Processing times are measured from the day a complete application is received until a final decision is made by an immigration officer. IRCC is meeting processing time commitments for all cases finalized.

Results from 2015 were based on a small volume of applications and in 2016, processing times grew in parallel with application volumes but still met the six-month processing time commitment. Processing times will continue to be monitored closely and any necessary action will be taken to continue meeting service standards such as adjustments to processing, measures to increase the quality and completeness of received applications, or reducing the number of invitations issued.

Table 11.1: Processing Time for Express Entry Based on Final Decision Date in 2015
Application data Federal Skilled Workers (EE) Canadian Experience Class (EE) Skilled Trades (EE) Provincial/Territorial Nominees (EE) Total EE
80% of applications finalized in x months or less 5 4 5 4 4
Applications finalized 3,223 9,861 2,330 1,077 16,491

Processing time is based on cases. Applications finalized, based on persons, refers to applications approved (14,058) and refused (2,433) between January 1, 2015 and January 3, 2016

Table 11.2: Processing Time for Express Entry Based on Final Decision Date in 2016
Application data Federal Skilled Workers (EE) Canadian Experience Class (EE) Skilled Trades (EE) Provincial/Territorial Nominees (EE) Total EE
80% of applications finalized in x months or less

6 6 6 5 6
Applications finalized 16,760 12,325 3,382 9,957 42,424

Processing time is based on cases. Applications finalized, based on persons, refers to applications approved (39,863) and refused (2,562) between January 1, 2016 and December 31, 2016.

Admissions

In 2015 and 2016, 43,202 applicants and their family members were admitted into Canada as permanent residents. The following tables display the characteristics of these immigrants including their province of destination, country of origin and the applicant’s primary occupation.

Alberta, British Columbia and Ontario were the main provinces chosen by immigrants who landed through Express Entry. The share of immigrants destined to Ontario increased significantly between 2015 and 2016 from 23% to 37%.

Express Entry candidates are usually admitted to Canada as permanent residents between 1 year and 1.5 years after they receive an invitation to apply for permanent residence. However, in early rounds of 2015, the vast majority of these candidates were working in Canada, were familiar with Canada’s immigration system, and were able to submit an application for permanent residence quickly. As a result, they were admitted into Canada as permanent residents in late 2015.

Table 13 below shows admissions by country of citizenship. The country mix of admissions in both 2015 and 2016 is pretty similar to the country mix of invited candidates, with India, China and the Philippines dominating in both years. Over time, we expect the admissions country mix to continue to change as the size of invitation rounds remains constant and CRS cut off is progressively lowered.

Early rounds in 2015 invited many candidates with a valid job offer with primary occupations as food service supervisors (NOC 6311) or cooks (NOC 6322). With 600 points available for a job offer, they became top-ranked candidates, were invited quickly and many became permanent residents in late 2015. Many were already in Canada. The 2015 admission occupation mix is a reflection of these early 2015 rounds.

As the ITA round sizes remained consistent at approximately 1,500 invitations per round starting in mid-2015, the occupation mix of invited candidates became more diverse. More candidates with a primary occupation as information systems analysts and consultants (NOC 2171) and software engineers (NOC 2173) were invited. University professors (NOC 4011) were also invited in larger numbers. The occupation mix of admissions in 2016 is the result of the diverging occupation mix during later rounds of 2015.

Table 12.1: Admissions (Total Persons) by Province of Destination and Immigration Category in 2015 under Express Entry
Province of Destination PNP Other
(CEC, FSW & FST)
All Programs
Alberta 0 5,502 5,502
British Columbia 352 1,234 1,586
Manitoba 29 56 85
New Brunswick 0 18 18
Newfoundland 0 27 27
Northwest Territories <5 <15 11
Nova Scotia 94 71 165
Nunavut 0 <5 <5
Ontario 11 2,221 2,232
Prince Edward Island <10 <5 11
Saskatchewan <5 <150 152
Yukon 0 <5 <5
Total 497 9,299 9,796

In order to protect personal privacy, some values in this table have been suppressed and replaced with the notation "<" followed by a number (e.g. "<5"). As a result, components may not sum to the total indicated. In general we have masked numbers less than five except in circumstances where, in our judgment, we are not releasing personal information on an identifiable individual.

Table 12.2: Admissions (Total Persons) by Province of Destination and Immigration Category in 2016 under Express Entry
Province of Destination PNP Other
(CEC, FSW & FST)
All Programs
Alberta 0 9,492 9,492
British Columbia 1,877 4,700 6,577
Manitoba 99 205 304
New Brunswick 367 72 439
Newfoundland <5 <90 90
Northwest Territories <15 <25 32
Nova Scotia 1,410 201 1,611
Nunavut 0 9 9
Ontario 1,948 10,447 12,395
Prince Edward Island 426 17 443
Saskatchewan 1,678 321 1,999
Yukon 0 15 15
Total 7,818 25,588 33,406

In order to protect personal privacy, some values in this table have been suppressed and replaced with the notation "<" followed by a number (e.g. "<5"). As a result, components may not sum to the total indicated. In general we have masked numbers less than five except in circumstances where, in our judgment, we are not releasing personal information on an identifiable individual.

Table 13: Admissions (Total Persons) by Country of Citizenship in 2015 and 2016 under Express Entry
Country of Citizenship Number (2015) % (2015) Number (2016) % (2016)
India 1,849 19% 9,579 29%
Philippines 2,444 25% 3,736 11%
China 361 4% 2,657 8%
United Kingdom 802 8% 1,990 6%
United States 366 4% 1,245 4%
Ireland, Republic of 555 6% 1,126 3%
Nigeria 98 1% 1,036 3%
Pakistan 104 1% 819 2%
Korea, South 347 4% 741 2%
France 102 1% 728 2%
Top 10 7,028 72% 23,657 71%

Country of citizenship based on 2016 ranking.

Table 14: Admissions (Total Persons) by Applicant’s Occupation in 2015 and 2016 under Express Entry
Occupation Number (2015) % (2015) Number (2016) % (2016)
NOC2171 - Information systems analysts and consultants 152 3% 986 5%
NOC6322 - Cooks 831 14% 886 5%
NOC6311 - Food service supervisors 991 17% 824 4%
NOC2174 - Computer programmers and interactive media developers 136 2% 797 4%
NOC2173 - Software engineers and designers 124 2% 717 4%
NOC4011 - University professors and lecturers 102 2% 543 3%
NOC6211 - Retail sales supervisors 239 4% 397 2%
NOC1111 - Financial auditors and accountants 48 1% 378 2%
NOC1123 - Professional occupations in advertising, marketing and public relations 60 1% 354 2%
NOC5241 - Graphic designers and illustrators 113 2% 353 2%
Top 10 2,796 49% 6,235 34%

Top 10 invited occupations based on 2016 ranking.

Additional Analysis I: International Students

As of November 19, 2016, CRS points are now awarded for education obtained in Canada above high school.

The CRS awards 15 points for a one- or two-year diploma or certificate and 30 points for a degree, diploma or certificate of three years or longer, or for a Master’s, professional or doctoral degree of at least one academic year. These points are awarded as long as candidates meet all the criteria for Canadian Study Points detailed in the Ministerial Instructions Respecting the Express Entry System.

With these changes, more former international students are able to transition to permanent residence through Express Entry. Former international students are a key source of candidates in Express Entry because of their age, education, skills and experience. In addition to the time already spent in Canada, integrating into Canadian society permanently will be easier because they will have established social networks and they will have familiarized themselves with life in Canada.

Tables 15, 16.1 and 16.2 below show the distribution of former international students, defined here as any candidates with a Canadian education credential above high school, in the pool and those invited to apply for permanent residence. A large proportion of those in the pool have a CRS score between 400 and 499. In comparison, candidates in the pool who never obtained an education credential in Canada above high school are mostly in the CRS score range of 300 to 399. The proportion of former international students invited increased significantly between 2015 and 2016 from 26% to 35%.

Table 15: Candidates in the Express Entry Pool as of January 19, 2017 with a Canadian Education Credential
CRS Score With Canadian Education Credential % Without Canadian Education Credential %
<100 0 0% 21 100%
100-199 7 3% 198 97%
200-299 120 5% 2,202 95%
300-399 2,286 7% 32,616 93%
400-499 5,304 30% 12,378 70%
500-599 17 13% 109 87%
600-699 0 0% 2 100%
700-799 0 0% 0 0%
800-899 0 0% 4 100%
900-999 34 35% 62 65%
1000-1099 39 34% 75 66%
1100-1199 0 0% 1 100%
Total 7,807 14% 47,668 86%
Median score 423 373

Candidates with a Canadian credential must have studied full time at an educational institution in Canada and received a certificate, diploma or degree for a post-secondary program of a year or more.

Table 16.1: Invited Candidates with a Canadian Education Credential (2015)
EE Status Number with Canadian Education Credential % with Canadian Education Credential Number without Canadian Education Credential % without Canadian Education Credential Total
PNP 1,783 43% 2,322 57% 4,105
FSW 4,389 33% 8,825 67% 13,214
CEC 1,827 16% 9,401 84% 11,228
FST 57 2% 2,459 98% 2,516
Total 8,056 26% 23,007 74% 31,063

Candidates with a Canadian credential must have studied full time at an educational institution in Canada and received a certificate, diploma or degree for a post-secondary program of a year or more.

Table 16.2: Invited Candidates with a Canadian Education Credential (2016)
EE Status Number with Canadian Education Credential % with Canadian Education Credential Number without Canadian Education Credential % without Canadian Education Credential Total
PNP 3,631 41% 5,167 59% 8,798
FSW 1,786 21% 6,546 79% 8,332
CEC 6,563 43% 8,539 57% 15,102
FST 12 1% 1,538 99% 1,550
Total 11,992 35% 21,790 65% 33,782

Candidates with a Canadian credential must have studied full time at an educational institution in Canada and received a certificate, diploma or degree for a post-secondary program of a year or more.

Additional Analysis II: French-Speaking Candidates

While the number of French-speaking candidates in the Express Entry pool remains small, Express Entry has the potential to contribute to the vitality and to support the development of Canada’s Francophone Minority Communities (FMC). Built into the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS), candidates who have strong proficiency in both official languages receive points for their bilingualism, which can increase their rank in the pool. In addition, improvements made to Express Entry in November 2016 award job offer points to qualified temporary workers in Mobilité Francophone who wish to become permanent residents.

Express Entry active candidates in the pool who have submitted results to the Test d’évaluation du français (TEF) for their first official language have a higher median CRS score in comparison with others in the pool, respectively 389 and 375 as of January 19, 2017.

In 2016, 2.8% of invited candidates were French-speakers, an increase of 0.8% from 2015. While these percentages are currently small, with growing invitation rounds and targeted improvements made to Express Entry, more invitations will be issued to French-speaking candidates interested in applying to come to Canada through Express Entry.

Table 17.1: Francophones in the Express Entry Pool as of January 19th, 2017 by Total CRS Score
Number % Average CRS Score Median CRS Score
725 1.3% 389 383
Table 17.2: All candidates in the Express Entry Pool as of January 19th, 2017 by Total CRS Score
Average CRS Score Median CRS Score
375 371

For Tables 18.1, 18.2 and 19, Francophones are defined to be applicants or admissions that have declared either French as their mother tongue or French only as their official spoken language. In 2016, 2.9% of all immigrants admitted into Canada were Francophones.

Table 18.1: Invited Francophone Candidates in 2015 and 2016
Number (2015) % (2015) Number (2016) % (2016)
586 2.1 888 2.8
Table 18.2: Applications for Permanent Residence Received (Total Persons) from Francophone Candidates in 2015 and 2016
Number (2015) % (2015) Number (2016) % (2016)
757 2.1 1,395 3.3

Total applications received for permanent residence in years 2015 and 2016 excludes cancelled cases.

Table 19: Admissions of Francophone Candidates (Total Persons) in 2015 and 2016 under Express Entry
Number of admissions in 2015 Number of admissions in 2016
124 953

Conclusion

This report demonstrates that in just two years of operation, Express Entry has welcomed a diverse range of highly skilled candidates from around the world.  Provinces, territories and employers have also successfully used Express Entry to fulfill regional and labour market needs; and, the processing time commitment has been met.

IRCC will continue to monitor Express Entry results, and innovate processes and policies as needed.

In 2017, we expect that the recent system changes and other improvements planned for June 2017, will result in Canada welcoming more immigrants with the diversified skills and experience needed to grow our economy.

Date Modified: