As a newcomer to the country looking for employment, every step in your Canadian job search journey matters. Let’s explore actions that will boost your chances of success and mistakes that can jeopardize significant opportunities.
Balance your expectations in the Canadian job search process
It’s essential not to set expectations too high upon arrival, expecting to secure your dream job immediately. The roles you desire may require the ideal candidate to possess local experience. On the flip side, it’s equally important not to undersell yourself by applying for positions that are far below your skill level. If you’re someone with several years of international work experience but are applying for entry-level positions in Canada, you’re probably going to receive a response that you’re overqualified. So, what do you do? If you’re not getting interview calls for full-time positions that align with your experience, consider starting with part-time roles. Accepting roles that may not align perfectly with your career goals may not be a bad idea if they can help you gain an understanding of the Canadian work landscape.
Global experience vs. local experience
Your international experience is valuable, but as we mentioned earlier, employers and recruiters might be looking for suitable local experience a.k.a Canadian experience on your résumé. Don’t have it yet? Worry not! Focus on highlighting your global experience instead. What we mean is that if you worked with brands/companies that have a global presence, then don’t emphasize the location; instead, showcase what you did there and the impact of your work. The key is to get through the door and engage in a conversation during an interview where the details can be discussed.
Oftentimes, the employer looks for local experience to rest assured that you understand the local workplace culture, that you’d fit into their teams or can lead a team, can carry small talk, and so on. Cultural fit and adaptability are key qualities that hiring managers seek in candidates.
Network actively to get closer to your desired career path
Building a successful career in Canada demands a nuanced and strategic approach. Networking, both in person and online via platforms such as LinkedIn or virtual events, will prove beneficial for you in the long run. On LinkedIn, when reaching out to other professionals or even recruiters, be specific and brief in connection requests. Engaging with their content, providing insights, and gradually establishing a connection can open doors in the future. The same rules apply to in-person networking. Avoid immediately seeking job opportunities when you meet someone. Instead, focus on building a meaningful relationship. Watch networking dos and don’ts by Professional Networking Advisor Brent Edwards to learn how.
This video is from a panel discussion on job search mistakes as part of our virtual talk show, Café New Canadians. Watch the full session on our YouTube channel. We also have lots of other resources and expert tips here on our website to help you in your new Canadian journey.
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