How to recruit a foreign worker in Quebec

Posted by: Selin Deravedisyan
Category: BLOG

Are you thinking of hiring a foreign worker because your company is refusing certain orders?

how to recruit a foreign worker in Quebec

Discover how to recruit a foreign worker in Quebec in a few steps.


When a company’s production is based, totally or partially, on job profiles that are in short supply, it is necessary to make choices for the good of the company.

The employer and the human resources department must find workers at all costs to fill all positions in order to support production.

For the human resources manager, this is a major challenge. There are a certain number of workers available in Quebec. They are insufficient to fill all the positions in demand. When he or she has placed advertisements on the various websites and recruitment networks in Quebec and is unable to do so, the human resources manager begins to seriously consider the solution of international recruitment.

But international recruitment is an unknown world that needs to be demystified, because for novices, especially if they are poorly supervised, it can lead to unpleasant surprises. Therefore, it is better to be prepared and well accompanied in order to move forward with confidence in the international recruitment process.

We are here to assist you in this process. In this article, you will find the main steps to recruit a foreign worker in Quebec.


Choosing the recruitment pool for your foreign workers

When recruiting internationally, one of the questions you need to ask yourself is “where to recruit”? Each geographic area has advantages and disadvantages. A good company like Phoenix GMI will help you understand them and decide which one best suits your company’s needs.

Because the choice of recruiting area has an impact on your performance.

Many consider the choice of language first. Some countries are primarily French, English or Spanish speaking. French-speaking people will more quickly speak the same language as your employees, while Spanish-speaking people will need some adaptation. But if a French-speaker may seem more fluent in expressing himself, he arrives with a French that is different from Quebec French. On the other hand, a Spanish-speaker will speak Quebec French and will immediately adopt the terms of your work environment. In the end, we recommend that you consider the candidate’s motivation for integration and his or her life plan in Quebec more than his or her native language.

The candidate’s culture of origin is therefore important. Each country has different values. For example, for some, the ability to adapt is highly valued, while others are extremely hardworking, etc. And in the collective imagination of these countries, Canada does not necessarily have the same place. Culture has a direct impact on your production, the retention of your existing employees and the foreign workers you recruit.

Next, we take into account the training paths of each country and measure their adequacy with the know-how you need to support your production.

And finally, the immigration process has a different duration depending on the country.

It is therefore essential to ask yourself the right questions and weigh the pros and cons for each employment area. You will then identify the solution that will ultimately require the least amount of effort.


Pre-screening foreign workers

Once the country is chosen, you must attract these talents. It is almost impossible, without local contacts, to find future foreign workers to recruit for Quebec.

You will therefore have to go through a company that has a network, partners, or part of its team on site, in order to advertise and put you in contact with potential foreign workers.

But the pre-selection of foreign workers requires more knowledge than for Quebec workers. Without an intermediary to help you translate the potential of these talents, how will you know how to interpret the resumes or ensure that a compatibility is possible?

At Phoenix GMI, we are very familiar with the cultures, backgrounds and motivations of the people we present. If you want to ensure that you are recruiting the right foreign workers, you will need an intermediary to bridge the gap between you and them.

We recommend that you have an intermediary who is very familiar with your expectations in terms of knowledge, know-how and interpersonal skills and who saves you the trouble of having to sort through resumes yourself that you find difficult to understand correctly.

In the same way, by using the services of Phoenix GMI, you can count on us to survey the candidate ourselves in order to evaluate his real values, his motivations and his life project in Quebec in order to assure you, not only of his production capacity but also of his retention over the long term. Also, we do not have a list of candidates or a bank of resumes, and each recruitment is a new selection totally dedicated to the needs of our employer client.


Selection of foreign workers to recruit for Quebec

Once you have a pre-selection of interesting candidates, as much for their background as for their know-how, you will be able to refine your choices. It will then be time for interviews to see how well they fit in.

Before the Covid situation, employers particularly liked to go on assignment on site, and it is certain that this allows them to fully discover how the workers behave, to see them perform their technical tests in order to fully understand their level, and also to discover the environment and the culture in which they live.

Now that a lot of work is done remotely, more employers are considering the benefits of remote recruiting. Indeed, it saves time. Technical tests can be conducted remotely, filmed by an on-site team and returned to the employer, which is enough for some employers.

However, you should know that it is still possible to travel to recruit on a real mission on site and that the constraints that exist for travelers are on the way to being reduced during 2021.


Immigration procedures to recruit a foreign worker in Quebec

Immigration procedures must be carried out in parallel with recruitment and even before. Why do you need to do this? Because the choice of positions and the way you formulate them has an impact on the immigration process, on the choice of talent and on other aspects of your business on which you will need advice.

You will also determine which immigration program is right for you.

Each program has specific steps to take. The most commonly heard of are the EIMT, the CAQ and the work permit.

For those who will have to submit an application for a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA), it will be necessary to build a precise file to demonstrate that this international recruitment has no negative impact on the Canadian labour market and does not take away any jobs from Quebec workers. At the same time, the Quebec provincial government decides which immigrants it will allow to come to Quebec and evaluates the working conditions and the profile of the candidates. It then issues the CAQ (Certificat d’Acceptation du Québec) in conjunction with the LMIA.

Then, the federal government intervenes again to study the application and issues the letter of approval for the work permit and the visa if applicable. Certain profiles, positions and situations allow you to apply directly for a work permit by submitting a job offer directly to IRCC (Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada) under the international mobility program.

Once the federal government accepts that your future temporary foreign workers come to work on Canadian soil, it is necessary to send departure instructions to them, and then to take into account the constraints of the Covid, so that the temporary foreign workers can come to Canada. These instructions are not only to send them the copy of their EIMT-CAQ and work contract but also precise information so that they are authorized to board the plane but also to present them to the immigration officer of the Canadian Border Services (CBSA) at their arrival where they will receive their work permit.


Integration of foreign workers recruited for Quebec

Integration work begins before foreign workers arrive in Quebec. It is recommended that employers and their teams be made aware of and prepared for the arrival of these new recruits.

Moreover, temporary foreign workers will integrate much better if they are familiar with the culture of the country and the company that welcomes them. Many immigration programs (and this is a plus for integration) require the employer to provide temporary foreign workers with housing or a furnished room upon arrival.

Temporary foreign workers will also have to understand the administrative workings of our country, obtain a SIN, a cell phone plan, open a bank account, a driver’s license for Quebec, etc. They will have to get their bearings, know how to get around, and be able to use the Internet. They will have to get their bearings, know where to shop, how to entertain themselves, and take care of their safety and health.

While waiting to come to Quebec, we recommend that you encourage your future non-French-speaking foreign workers to begin their francization.

All of these steps guarantee the best integration of temporary foreign workers, but also their retention in the long term.


And now, what to do?

Of course, for each of these steps, it is always possible to do it yourself.

But the time spent understanding the ins and outs is really important, especially since you don’t always know which resource to turn to, and most of them give partial answers and solutions.

However, Phoenix GMI works with employers through each of these steps and takes into account your corporate culture to define your overall international recruitment, immigration and temporary foreign worker integration strategies.

Do you have specific questions? We have the answers! Contact us now!


Phoenix GMI offers international recruitment and immigration services for Quebec and Canadian companies, and for candidates wishing to make a life project in Canada.

Our multidisciplinary, rigorous and dedicated team implements concrete and personalized strategies for its clients.

Author: Selin Deravedisyan