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Landed four months ago - Experience so far

pacificislander

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greengoo5 said:
Canadian work experience helps in both ways. Even if it is not directly related to your work, it helps. Ff you're associated with a decent brand, it shows that you are capable of doing well in Canada and this is exactly what employers look for.

A lot of people coming to Canada on PR lack even the basic communication skills. A lot of people lie on their resume to get jobs and then prove to be a disappointment. A history of such people has led to employers being really cautious of new immigrants.
Thanks for the reply. I have another question. What does connections mean? How to establish connections? Will I have to meet people and introduce myself?
 
 

vishalv

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greengoo5 said:
I've been a long time lurker of this forum. I don't post often but do have a habit of checking out threads quietly. Figured I should contribute by sharing my experience in Canada.

Back Home
I'm from India. In mid 20s. Did well academically. MBA from a top 10 school. Amazing job right out of college that paid well. 15ish Lacs/annum if you're curious. Two years later, I'm working as a manager with a 50% bump in salary. Lived at home with parents so didn't even have to pay rent. To summarize it, I was doing well. Very well.

Express Entry and PR
I had been in the pool since Jan-15 when Express Entry started. Got my three years of experience and got an invite in early 2016. I started browsing the forums after almost four months of getting my AOR. I didn't really need help with respect to the application process as I followed all the rules by the letter and had a pretty clear cut case. My process closely followed the norms. BG change after a few months. PPR slightly before the onset of the seventh month in Oct-16. Sent passports to the High Commission and received it back within a week. Booked my tickets and landed in Canada in Nov-16. Had an address in hand at the airport so applied for PR Card then and there only. The process was slow due to Christmas. Received a mail in January asking for fresh photographs. Received the PR Card in early Feb.

Canada
I am fortunate enough to have a family in Canada. I have a brother and a close uncle living in Canada for quite some time now.
Landed in mid Nov-16. Having slogged for 3+ years at my previous corporate finance job, I decided to chill for a good period of time. There's little hiring in December anyways. Really enjoyed my time. It was cold, but it was fun. Everything clad in white is a sight for the eyes which haven't witnessed snow in their life. With good gear, it's much easier to tolerate. Snowball fights as a grown man are even more fun...you miss less shots. I explored the beauty of the country side, the tall buildings of downtown Toronto and the history that the small towns have to offer. My vacation was fun but hardly did I know that it'd get stretched longer than I had initially thought.

Come 2017 and I started looking for work. I have a commerce degree with an MBA. I have also passed all three levels of the CFA exam. A year or two ago, my brother had shown my resume to a few people and everyone was of the opinion that I'd get a job fairly easy. Boy oh boy. I took it easy at first. Applying to a few jobs, relaxing for the rest of the day and spending time with the family. Slowly it dawned on me that it'd require much more effort than what I was putting in. I went gungho and started applying to a LOT of jobs everyday. But I'd only apply to the ones which were as per my skill level and interested me. I got a few phone calls from the HR. I blew a few. I aced a few. An even fewer interviews. I blew a few. I aced an even fewer. The absence of Canadian experience or qualification definitely hurt my chances to say the least. An Indian name didn't really help much either. But I'm a hard worker. I don't give up easily.

Fast forward to today. I have a job. My work closely resembles to what I was doing in India. The pay is nice. The commute is okay. The work is good. I'm happy.

The Reality
How do I find Canada? Amazing.
Is it easy to come from a foreign country and settle down? Not as easy as you think.
But I just made it sound like it's not a lot of trouble? Yeah, but chances are, you're not as fortunate as me.

I have my family here which is very supportive. Not even once they pushed me for a job which I didn't like or pressured me to start work at any time. There were days during my job hunt when I would be at an all time low, having blown up my few opportunities and having nothing else in hand. There were extended periods of time when I would just keep applying and not get any other response except the "We picked some other candidate. Yo". But I'm a hard worker. I don't give up easily. I kept applying.

I've figured that it's a numbers game. I applied to more than 500 jobs. and mind you, only the jobs that interested me and were a good match for my skillset. I received a phone call from around ten employers. A face to face interview with five and a job offer from one. You can do the percentages.

The Journey
People asked me if I was crazy to leave an amazing job in my hometown to move to a totally new country. They'd ask me if I had weighed in everything correctly before taking the risk. I don't consider myself to be super smart but I know that I'm hard working. I knew what I was risking and was aware of the fact that I had a supporting family in Canada. There were a multitude of reasons why I wanted to leave India and I'm not going to dwell upon them. The reasons are different for everyone. But when I'm asked the reason why I moved to Canada? For a better future for my family.

Every country has it's own set of problems. You just have to see what is important for you and take a decision. You have all the resources and the time to take an informed decision. There are a lot of times in life when you know things are not going to be easy and that you'd have to work hard for them. Chances are, even after putting in your 100%, things don't work in your favor. But that doesn't mean you stop trying. You put in your 110% and you make them work. That's how we progress.

So what's the takeaway?
  • The lack of Canadian credentials/ experience severely hurts your chances. Having passed CFA exams helped me a lot. I believe it was the only reason I received the 10 phone calls. It really helps to get Canadian credentials as soon as you put your foot here. Further explanation below.
  • I scored an 8 on IELTS. I've watched English soaps and listened to Eminem all my life. And yet, there are times when I've to request people to repeat themselves. It's really important that you are proficient both in listening and speaking English. It's going to make and break everything for you. From your daily conversations to the interviews. Speak slow and speak clear. Also, accent training helps a lot. Youtube my friend.
  • Be prepared to work hard once you get here. If you're financially strong, good for you. Don't worry too much about the money and invest the time in getting Canadian credentials and searching for a job. If you're not, you've got to grab whatever comes at you. The thing that I love about Canada, there's no big or small work. It's just work. You're respected and treated like a human being no matter what you do.
  • The weather is bad. But it's not the end. 30 Mil people live here. You have to invest in the right gear. A good winter jacket costs a lot but think of it as an investment as it's going to last you a while. Also, snow boots, gloves and a hat. Heck, I used to put on winter gear and spend hours building snow-forts in -15 C.
  • Be prepared to work hard. Very hard.

A few tips for the credentials
Chartered Accountants and people interested in accounting. -> http://www.cpaontario.ca
Lawyers -> http://flsc.ca/
Teachers -> https://www.oct.ca/
People interested in Banking -> https://www.ific.ca/en/ & https://www.csi.ca/student/en_ca/courses/csi/csc.xhtml
People interested in Insurance -> https://www.ifse.ca/courselist/life-license-qualification-program-llqp/

The above links have information about credentials required for certain jobs. I'd be best if you search for the profiles you like on https://www.indeed.ca/ and see the kind of credentials the employers require.
Having credentials helps in the sense that the employer at least knows that you are willing to put in work and learn about the culture, taxation and the systems of the new country.

I can go on and on about a lot of stuff but it'd just be adding to the length of this page. If you have any questions, let me know. I'd be happy to answer.
Excellent post. I'm really glad that you could make it successfully in Canada. It's an amazing country and as you rightly emphasized, hard work & the right attitude can go a long way to build a successful future. :)
 

greengoo5

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pacificislander said:
Thanks for the reply. I have another question. What does connections mean? How to establish connections? Will I have to meet people and introduce myself?
Networking. Go to job fairs. Meet people. Meet recruiters. Make friends. Make friends everywhere. So that when your friends know about a job opening, they know whom they should be referring.
 

shazfa

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Very well written and motivating post. I have a question from all of you guys who has already landed in Canada. I am planning to go for MBA study in UK and i have a PR. Is it better to study MBA from Canada or a UK degree would be more beneficial in getting a job in Canada. Post MBA, my target is to get a job in Canada, so which degree will help me more in securing a job in Canada.

Thanks in advance,
 

21Goose

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shazfa said:
Very well written and motivating post. I have a question from all of you guys who has already landed in Canada. I am planning to go for MBA study in UK and i have a PR. Is it better to study MBA from Canada or a UK degree would be more beneficial in getting a job in Canada. Post MBA, my target is to get a job in Canada, so which degree will help me more in securing a job in Canada.

Thanks in advance,
If you want a job in Canada, then study in Canada. It's not just about the degree, it's also about the network you'll make while studying here.

The school does matter, of course, but less than you'd think. As long as you're going to a decent school, and you do well and network well, getting a job isn't that hard.
 
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DEEPCUR

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shazfa said:
Very well written and motivating post. I have a question from all of you guys who has already landed in Canada. I am planning to go for MBA study in UK and i have a PR. Is it better to study MBA from Canada or a UK degree would be more beneficial in getting a job in Canada. Post MBA, my target is to get a job in Canada, so which degree will help me more in securing a job in Canada.

Thanks in advance,
Why will you waste money in UK when you have Canadian PR? You can do your masters in Canada for cheap and eventually end up with a much better job too!
 

umar32085

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greengoo5 said:
Canadian work experience helps in both ways. Even if it is not directly related to your work, it helps. Ff you're associated with a decent brand, it shows that you are capable of doing well in Canada and this is exactly what employers look for.

A lot of people coming to Canada on PR lack even the basic communication skills. A lot of people lie on their resume to get jobs and then prove to be a disappointment. A history of such people has led to employers being really cautious of new immigrants.
Well first of all, thank you for sharing such a wonderful experience.
Based on your experience, do you think that the soft skills are more important than the technical skills in obtaining your first job? I have attended some webinars on this, they say the same. What are your thoughts on this?
 

kamy

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Thanks greengoo5 for helpful insights. I have few questions regarding proof of funds, how did you carry funds?
-- I see many posts where people suggest you better get cashier's cheque, demand draft, cash, wire transfer and local bank certificates or bank statements are not considered in case officer asks for funds proof.
-- I asked my bank citi for demand draft, they need an address in Canada to issue draft draft as it seems to be a requirement of canadian bank when you encash the draft.
 
 

steaky

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kamy said:
Thanks greengoo5 for helpful insights. I have few questions regarding proof of funds, how did you carry funds?
-- I see many posts where people suggest you better get cashier's cheque, demand draft, cash, wire transfer and local bank certificates or bank statements are not considered in case officer asks for funds proof.
-- I asked my bank citi for demand draft, they need an address in Canada to issue draft draft as it seems to be a requirement of canadian bank when you encash the draft.
When I went to my Citibank branch last month, they didn't ask the address in Canada to issue the demand draft. No problem encash when I returned Canada. I think you should double check or speak to another teller.
 

DEEPCUR

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umar32085 said:
Well first of all, thank you for sharing such a wonderful experience.
Based on your experience, do you think that the soft skills are more important than the technical skills in obtaining your first job? I have attended some webinars on this, they say the same. What are your thoughts on this?
I will let for OP to speak for this. But on a general note, if your English is good and clear, it will give a huge confidence to the potential employer to hire you. That's why it is said soft skills are important.
 

greengoo5

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umar32085 said:
Well first of all, thank you for sharing such a wonderful experience.
Based on your experience, do you think that the soft skills are more important than the technical skills in obtaining your first job? I have attended some webinars on this, they say the same. What are your thoughts on this?
True to an extent. Employers place a lot of stress on soft skills. Since majority of the time, your possible direct supervisor would be directly involved in the recruitment process, it becomes important to demonstrate likability. I for one would love to work with a person who's an instant hit with me, who I like, with whom I can strike a quality conversation with.

kamy said:
Thanks greengoo5 for helpful insights. I have few questions regarding proof of funds, how did you carry funds?
-- I see many posts where people suggest you better get cashier's cheque, demand draft, cash, wire transfer and local bank certificates or bank statements are not considered in case officer asks for funds proof.
-- I asked my bank citi for demand draft, they need an address in Canada to issue draft draft as it seems to be a requirement of canadian bank when you encash the draft.
I carried $400 to Canada. I still have $380 out of that. For my bigger expenses, I got the rest of my funds through a wire transfer from my account back home.
The proof of funds at landing can be satisfied through bank statements and such. You don't actually have to carry the whole amount with you. They understand that you can always transfer it electronically.
If you want to carry funds with you, carry cash and travelers cheques. They're relatively easy to get and use.

DEEPCUR said:
I will let for OP to speak for this. But on a general note, if your English is good and clear, it will give a huge confidence to the potential employer to hire you. That's why it is said soft skills are important.
Yes. Majority of the jobs, you'll be engaging with active conversation with a variety of people. If you can hold a solid conversation, you are half way through.
 

jpv2212

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Regarding ever-burning issue of job hunting, I'd come across a nice explanation of how to succeed in Canadian job market.

Got very useful info, well-explained.

I guess it'll give all a nice insight into the subject.

Please follow this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LhA3zeELPzc
 
 

umar32085

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kamy said:
Thanks greengoo5 for helpful insights. I have few questions regarding proof of funds, how did you carry funds?
-- I see many posts where people suggest you better get cashier's cheque, demand draft, cash, wire transfer and local bank certificates or bank statements are not considered in case officer asks for funds proof.
-- I asked my bank citi for demand draft, they need an address in Canada to issue draft draft as it seems to be a requirement of canadian bank when you encash the draft.
Wire transfer may be a safe option. ScotiaBank offers StartRight Program, by which you can open a Canadian Bank Account while you are still in your home country. But, wire transfer costs you a handsome amount of money, so, in that case, you could also take cash by declaring it at CSBA.
 

umar32085

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DEEPCUR said:
I will let for OP to speak for this. But on a general note, if your English is good and clear, it will give a huge confidence to the potential employer to hire you. That's why it is said soft skills are important.
Thank you for your reply. Since there is a lot of difference between the workplace culture of Canada and my home country, I was a bit curious about it.