Immigration is essential to Canada’s economic growth. For Canada to remain globally competitive, employers must fully capitalize on the potential for innovation and growth that comes from hiring and integrating skilled immigrants, according to the Deloitte white paper Welcome To Canada. Now What? Unlocking the Potential of Immigrants for Business Growth and Innovation.
The white paper, the second in Deloitte’s “Dialogue on diversity” series, builds on the professional services firm’s roundtable discussions that examined why organizations aren’t fully and more effectively integrating skilled immigrants into Canadian workplaces.
The report brings together the perspectives of employers, community organizations, special interest groups, government agencies and ministries, and immigrants and found a consistent call to action: Canada needs to do a better job of integrating skilled, foreign-trained workers into our workforce by identifying the barriers to integration and breaking them down.

These barriers include:

  • credentials not being recognized
  • lack of professional networks
  • lack of Canadian experience
  • bias in recruitment

Proposed solutions include:

  • review HR policies and practices through a “diversity lens”
  • educate recruiters about different cultures and international credentials
  • offer internships to provide Canadian experience and “test drive” candidates
  • develop cultural connections and understanding of current employees
  • create employee resource groups
  • have employees mentor skilled immigrants