Frequently Asked Questions

Why hire Immigrants?

There is a business case for recruiting and retaining skilled immigrants. Shortages of skilled workers are an important issue that many organizations are now tackling. With lower birthrates, declining numbers of post-secondary graduates and unprecedented numbers of retirements, the labour shortage will soon be acute.

  • The underutilization of newcomers accounts for a loss of between $3.4 and $5.0 billion dollars per year for Canada’s economy, according to the Conference Board of Canada. Organizations that fail to adopt diverse leadership will lose dollars and talent.
  • By 2011, 100% of net growth in the labour force is projected to come from immigration.
  • Ottawa is the second largest recipient of immigrants in Ontario, a rich and skilled talent pool of under utilized labour force.
  • Ottawa attracts highly educated immigrants who come with great diversity in education, training, job skills, expertise and experience. Nearly half of all immigrants who settle in Ottawa hold a university degree.

What about the present economic environment?

While the current economic slowdown may lead to lay-offs or a freeze in hiring in some sectors – a temporary respite, labour shortage will soon be felt across many sectors. Falling birth rates, unprecedented retirements and an increasing demand for top talent will continue to put pressure on employers to meet their labour force needs, more so when the economic slowdown rebounds.

What are the benefits of hiring skilled immigrants?

Some of the benefits of hiring skilled immigrants include:

  • Attract and retain top talent to alleviate skill and labour shortages
  • Better understand and respond to the increasingly diverse local customer base
  • Expand local markets, and develop new global markets, by leveraging immigrants’ international experience and cultural awareness
  • Enhance productivity, creativity, employee relations, and decision-making through diverse approaches
  • Save on employee training costs by utilizing transferable foreign work experience

How does Hire Immigrants Ottawa (HIO) help employers?

  • HIO works directly with its sector-specific working groups, which are made up of human resources professionals, to address the barriers that employers face in recruiting and retaining skilled immigrants
  • HIO has online resources to help hiring managers create a workplace that can successfully recruit and retain skilled immigrants, including the Employer’s Guide to Integrating Immigrants into the Workplaceand The Working Groups Action Plan.
  • There are many local resources that HIO can help you connect with, including the Ottawa Job Match Network (OJMN) to access a qualified pool of skilled immigrants.

Please send your questions to: or 613-228-6700.

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