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Personal Experience

Dark_Night

Star Member
Jun 14, 2019
75
30
Toronto
I also just want to share my story which I hope helps someone else who is either in a similar situation or are thinking of moving to Canada right now.

I gave up my job back home at the end of February (I gave two months' notice in December, so couldn't change my plans), sold my car and other goods, and booked my flights. So, there was no turning back at this stage, plus I’ve already put in so much effort and money to obtain my Canadian permanent residence.

After a more than 39h journey (including a 9h in layovers), I landed in Vancouver, just in time before everything was locked down. I'm in, the worst part is over I thought! But little did I know how protracted this pandemic will be and how much economic uncertainty it will bring. Canada’s unemployment rate increased to 13.7% from 5.6% pre-pandemic, and 3m fewer Canadians held jobs by the end of April.

Five months have passed since my arrival. I’ve made new friends and managed to explore my newly adopted city. Vancouver has so much to offer, beaches, mountains, efficient public transport (you don’t need a car for the most part). However, all of this means nothing if you don’t have a steady income.

After applying for upwards of 50 jobs, going on numerous interviews, I am still without stable employment. I’ve even been to the final interview stages, just to be told they no longer wish to fill the vacancy. My hopes were crushed, and I started to seriously doubt my prospects and abilities. Is my international experience of little value here? Do I go back? Will I ever build a successful career here so I can at least afford a decent lifestyle? Vancouver’s is not a cheap city to live in.

So where to from here? I haven’t thrown the towel in yet, but what happens over the next few months is crucial. If it doesn’t work out, at least I know I’ve tried my best. But still, I’ve moved here for a reason and, sadly, I might have to give up my hopes.

This is a summary of the situation I’m in and if you have anything to add or have a similar story to share, please reach out.
 

ivand

Star Member
Mar 15, 2016
86
20
You didn't say a word about kinds of jobs you are applying now :) What is your work experience? What jobs are you applying to?
 

Dark_Night

Star Member
Jun 14, 2019
75
30
Toronto
You didn't say a word about kinds of jobs you are applying now :) What is your work experience? What jobs are you applying to?
I have 5 years of experience as a portfolio analyst in the asset management industry. I applied for anything from customer service roles at retail banks and credit unions, to administrator positions at investment firms.
 

fotjon

Star Member
Sep 5, 2016
99
22
Category........
FSW
Welcome to Canada :)

Remember, Skip the Dishes and Uber are immigrants best friends today.
 

Dark_Night

Star Member
Jun 14, 2019
75
30
Toronto
Welcome to Canada :)

Remember, Skip the Dishes and Uber are immigrants best friends today.
Thanks but I currently don't have a car or a local drivers licence which makes it difficult. I could rent a car for $60 per day but I'm not sure it's viable.
 

canuck78

VIP Member
Jun 18, 2017
34,800
7,909
There is certainly bad timing but the finance industry is relatively small in Canada with Brexit and issues in HK many in finance are considering relocating and many Canadians have been living abroad have returned. There are a large number of finance workers working all over Asia, Europe or the US wanting to secure citizenship. Canada can only absorb so many finance workers on top of those who have never left Canada. Given the pandemic most banks and other financial companies currently have hiring freezes without so much insecurity in the economy. Wish I had better news. I wouldn’t be limiting yourself to Vancouver. Most finance related jobs are in Toronto. Would be applying throughout Canada.
 

pavan23

Hero Member
Nov 18, 2014
469
113
Hello,

I would suggest you target companies directly instead of looking for job postings.

50 Job applications in 5 months ? Thats very few to be honest with you .

I also had given more than 30 interviews and found a job in my filed in 3 months time.

Just persist with the job hunt , make a list of all the industries and keep contacting them through linkedin directly mail using their contact us forms.

All the best
 

Das67

Hero Member
Oct 19, 2019
641
295
Hello,

I would suggest you target companies directly instead of looking for job postings.

50 Job applications in 5 months ? Thats very few to be honest with you .

I also had given more than 30 interviews and found a job in my filed in 3 months time.

Just persist with the job hunt , make a list of all the industries and keep contacting them through linkedin directly mail using their contact us forms.

All the best
I found linkedin very useful, I have personal experience finding a job in my field by using LinkedIn, since then I do not apply via website anymore. Lot of people do not know how LinkedIn is a poweful tool.
 

canuck78

VIP Member
Jun 18, 2017
34,800
7,909
Hello,

I would suggest you target companies directly instead of looking for job postings.

50 Job applications in 5 months ? Thats very few to be honest with you .

I also had given more than 30 interviews and found a job in my filed in 3 months time.

Just persist with the job hunt , make a list of all the industries and keep contacting them through linkedin directly mail using their contact us forms.

All the best
To be fair most financial I situations have frozen hiring so there aren’t a lot of job postings around. It will be hard to get any job because employers will realize that an asset manager is not planning on answering phones for the rest of their lives. Those who are leaving well paid jobs really need to consider whether moving to Canada makes sense without a job offer.
 

steaky

VIP Member
Nov 11, 2008
10,752
791
Job Offer........
Pre-Assessed..
Thanks but I currently don't have a car or a local drivers licence which makes it difficult. I could rent a car for $60 per day but I'm not sure it's viable.
How joining ridesharing membership such as Evo?
 

Dark_Night

Star Member
Jun 14, 2019
75
30
Toronto
There is certainly bad timing but the finance industry is relatively small in Canada with Brexit and issues in HK many in finance are considering relocating and many Canadians have been living abroad have returned. There are a large number of finance workers working all over Asia, Europe or the US wanting to secure citizenship. Canada can only absorb so many finance workers on top of those who have never left Canada. Given the pandemic most banks and other financial companies currently have hiring freezes without so much insecurity in the economy. Wish I had better news. I wouldn’t be limiting yourself to Vancouver. Most finance related jobs are in Toronto. Would be applying throughout Canada.
Thank you for your input. I've been contemplating moving to Toronto, but I am averse to doing that unless I have a job offer. Do you suggest I apply for Toronto jobs while I am still in Vancouver? The only issue is I would need to interview remotely and I'm not sure how well most employers deal with that.
 

Dark_Night

Star Member
Jun 14, 2019
75
30
Toronto
Hello,

I would suggest you target companies directly instead of looking for job postings.

50 Job applications in 5 months ? Thats very few to be honest with you .

I also had given more than 30 interviews and found a job in my filed in 3 months time.

Just persist with the job hunt , make a list of all the industries and keep contacting them through linkedin directly mail using their contact us forms.

All the best
There aren't that many job postings right now to be honest. So getting more than 50 is not easy. But thanks for the advice.
I have emailed employers directly and also via LinkedIn. The success rate is quite low to be honest. I've maybe had one or two who responded.
 

canuck78

VIP Member
Jun 18, 2017
34,800
7,909
Thank you for your input. I've been contemplating moving to Toronto, but I am averse to doing that unless I have a job offer. Do you suggest I apply for Toronto jobs while I am still in Vancouver? The only issue is I would need to interview remotely and I'm not sure how well most employers deal with that.
I would apply for jobs throughout Canada. Would recommend that anyone moving to Canada not limit themselves to one location and only sign a longterm lease once they have secured a job. Also recommend that Canadians not limit where they apply for jobs unless they need to remain in a certain city.
 

torontosm

Champion Member
Apr 3, 2013
1,675
258
I also just want to share my story which I hope helps someone else who is either in a similar situation or are thinking of moving to Canada right now.

I gave up my job back home at the end of February (I gave two months' notice in December, so couldn't change my plans), sold my car and other goods, and booked my flights. So, there was no turning back at this stage, plus I’ve already put in so much effort and money to obtain my Canadian permanent residence.

After a more than 39h journey (including a 9h in layovers), I landed in Vancouver, just in time before everything was locked down. I'm in, the worst part is over I thought! But little did I know how protracted this pandemic will be and how much economic uncertainty it will bring. Canada’s unemployment rate increased to 13.7% from 5.6% pre-pandemic, and 3m fewer Canadians held jobs by the end of April.

Five months have passed since my arrival. I’ve made new friends and managed to explore my newly adopted city. Vancouver has so much to offer, beaches, mountains, efficient public transport (you don’t need a car for the most part). However, all of this means nothing if you don’t have a steady income.

After applying for upwards of 50 jobs, going on numerous interviews, I am still without stable employment. I’ve even been to the final interview stages, just to be told they no longer wish to fill the vacancy. My hopes were crushed, and I started to seriously doubt my prospects and abilities. Is my international experience of little value here? Do I go back? Will I ever build a successful career here so I can at least afford a decent lifestyle? Vancouver’s is not a cheap city to live in.

So where to from here? I haven’t thrown the towel in yet, but what happens over the next few months is crucial. If it doesn’t work out, at least I know I’ve tried my best. But still, I’ve moved here for a reason and, sadly, I might have to give up my hopes.

This is a summary of the situation I’m in and if you have anything to add or have a similar story to share, please reach out.
Sorry to hear of your experience. Through no fault of your own, you arrived at a time where the financial industry is under tremendous pressure and firms are struggling to adjust to the new normal.

The asset management industry in Canada was already diminishing, even before COVID, and the pandemic has just accelerated that trend. It sounds like you have broadened your search to include sectors outside of AM, which is the absolute right thing to do. That said, many firms are still on a "hiring freeze" as they are waiting to see what the fall brings. If you can, hang in there and things should start picking up a bit later this month.

Do look for jobs across Canada. These days, everyone is interviewing remotely so employers are quite used to it. If you can land a good job elsewhere in Canada, it would definitely be worth moving. As someone else mentioned, network through LinkedIn and approach companies directly rather than just perusing job postings.

Good luck, and I really hope it all works out for you!
 

laxsun

Hero Member
Jan 11, 2016
620
229
I also just want to share my story which I hope helps someone else who is either in a similar situation or are thinking of moving to Canada right now.

I gave up my job back home at the end of February (I gave two months' notice in December, so couldn't change my plans), sold my car and other goods, and booked my flights. So, there was no turning back at this stage, plus I’ve already put in so much effort and money to obtain my Canadian permanent residence.

After a more than 39h journey (including a 9h in layovers), I landed in Vancouver, just in time before everything was locked down. I'm in, the worst part is over I thought! But little did I know how protracted this pandemic will be and how much economic uncertainty it will bring. Canada’s unemployment rate increased to 13.7% from 5.6% pre-pandemic, and 3m fewer Canadians held jobs by the end of April.

Five months have passed since my arrival. I’ve made new friends and managed to explore my newly adopted city. Vancouver has so much to offer, beaches, mountains, efficient public transport (you don’t need a car for the most part). However, all of this means nothing if you don’t have a steady income.

After applying for upwards of 50 jobs, going on numerous interviews, I am still without stable employment. I’ve even been to the final interview stages, just to be told they no longer wish to fill the vacancy. My hopes were crushed, and I started to seriously doubt my prospects and abilities. Is my international experience of little value here? Do I go back? Will I ever build a successful career here so I can at least afford a decent lifestyle? Vancouver’s is not a cheap city to live in.

So where to from here? I haven’t thrown the towel in yet, but what happens over the next few months is crucial. If it doesn’t work out, at least I know I’ve tried my best. But still, I’ve moved here for a reason and, sadly, I might have to give up my hopes.

This is a summary of the situation I’m in and if you have anything to add or have a similar story to share, please reach out.
Hope your situation is getting better. Most immigrants have difficult first year here in Canada.
If you believe in yourself and your strength you will certainly succeed.

If you like my suggestion, try to retrain here in Canada. For the immediate step, you can take some courses (one or two) at BCIT so that you know the industry here and most importantly they have internal job postings from companies for students.

Good luck!