Canadian Employers Missing the Potential for Innovation and Growth from Immigrants: Deloitte

TORONTO, ONTARIO, Nov 01, 2011 (MARKETWIRE via COMTEX) -- According to a new white paper by Deloitte, Welcome to Canada. Now what? Unlocking the potential of immigrants for business growth and innovation, many Canadian employers are finding it easy to put diversity and inclusiveness into a mission statement, but difficult to put them into practice. In its second cross-country study of diversity practices called "Dialogue on diversity," Deloitte learned that the dreams of educated newcomers - people vital to our economic growth - are being eroded by unrecognized credentials, no Canadian experience, a lack of support for networking, and lingering biases in recruitment.
As one participant said, "Canada does have one of the best immigration processes globally - but there is a broken promise because we tell people that their skill-set is going to be recognized, and then they can't get a job and they end up driving taxis." Often, this is because organizations are clinging to outdated notions. For example, half of the respondents to a Public Policy Forum survey said that Canadian work experience is either a requirement for employment in their organization, or that foreign work experience is not necessarily considered equal to Canadian experience.
The lack of "fit" or acceptance was another issue raised by the white paper, which strongly suggests that companies have much to gain by broadening their thinking. "Only by taking calculated risks and being open to learning from the experiences of immigrants will Canadian companies fully capitalize on the potential for innovation and growth that comes with their hiring," says Deloitte's Chief Diversity Officer, Partner Jane Allen.
The findings in the paper echo earlier Deloitte studies on productivity and tax policy. In the Future of Productivity, facilitating the immigration of skilled workers is cited as key to improving our competitiveness. Competing for global talent notes that these individuals will also enhance government tax revenues.
The white paper argues that it's time to put the theory of diversity into action: more proactive steps must be taken to quickly enable skilled foreign-born workers to contribute to Canada's economy and achieve their own dreams. Various provinces offer programs through community organizations and government ministries - these and other initiatives provide a solid base of best practices for employers across Canada. The annual Dialogue on diversity study conducted by Deloitte serves to highlight both opportunity and progress in this critically important area.
About Deloitte
Deloitte, one of Canada's leading professional services firms, provides audit, tax, consulting, and financial advisory services through more than 7,600 people in 57 offices. Deloitte operates in Quebec as Samson Belair/Deloitte & Touche s.e.n.c.r.l. Deloitte & Touche LLP, an Ontario Limited Liability Partnership, is the Canadian member firm of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited. Deloitte refers to one or more of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited, a UK private company limited by guarantee, and its network of member firms, each of which is a legally separate and independent entity. Please see for a detailed description of the legal structure of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited and its member firms.

Ten Ways to Make Yourself a Job Magnet

Looking for a job can be hard work. Preparing a CV so that it is clear and attractive, searching Canada Jobs listings and meeting with hiring managers takes time and concentration. Recruiters and headhunters are hired by employers to find qualified candidates to fill positions. Candidates who are referred by recruiters are often given higher priority by employers because the screening has already been done. Here are ten things that you can do to make yourself more attractive to recruiters.

1. Be employed – Fair or not, recruiters often look first for job candidates who are working. They operate on the premise that if you want something done, find a busy person. They perceive that those who have survived layoffs are less expendable than those who have been laid off. If you are currently employed but anticipate a layoff, begin your job search immediately. If you are not currently employed, consider taking a position at which you would be underemployed so that you can put “to present” on the dates of employment for your most recent position on your CV.

2. Be good at what you do – Be conscientious about your work. Ask for feedback from your superiors and coworkers about what you can do to improve the quality of your work. Strive to get along with others. It is easier to have a reputation for being good at your job if the people you work with perceive you as a nice person. This reputation will find its way to recruiters.

3. Contact the recruiters – Use an Internet search engine to find recruiting agencies that place candidates in your industry or field. They will often be grateful that you helped them eliminate several steps in filling a position. If they think you are not suitable for a position that you seek, they will most likely provide honest feedback as to why. This can give you an opportunity to take corrective measures, such as taking classes to make you more current in your field.

4. Get your name in print – Write letters to the editor or submit articles to trade publications or websites. This gives you a greater chance to be noticed by recruiters.

5. Network – Get involved in clubs or charities. This will help you to expand your interests and give you an opportunity to solve problems. It will also make you known to a wider circle of contacts. Use LinkedIn and other social media to join online discussions about your profession. You can also use LinkedIn to post online portfolios that will help recruiters better understand your qualifications.

6. Find a mentor or champion – A successful and experienced person can tell you what you need to do to advance in your career and will usually have the right connections to help you land a position. The mentor benefits from gaining a reputation for good referrals if you do well at your new position.

7. Participate in trade or professional associations – Volunteer to give a speech or presentation or serve on a panel at a conference. Even stuffing envelopes will increase the number of contacts that you have and will raise your profile so that you will be more likely to be noticed by recruiters.

8. List all of your accomplishments on your CV – It is especially important to list problems you have solved. This lets recruiters know that you were not merely putting in the time at your position, but took an interest in getting things done.

9. Be brief – Recruiters have stacks of CVs to review in a short amount of time. They will give higher priority to those that are clear and succinct. Use bullet points when possible.

10. Have recognizable firm names and position titles on a CV – If you have worked for small firms and went to an obscure school, take classes at a large university or volunteer for a well known charity. If your firm uses unusual sounding titles, consider putting a comparable title in parentheses next to the position title.

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