The distinction between skilled and unskilled work is pivotal in the Permanent Residency (PR) process in Canada. This differentiation is based on the definition provided by the Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), which relies on the National Occupation Classification (NOC) system to categorize occupations in Canada.

National Occupation Classification (NOC)

The NOC is Canada‚Äôs national system for describing occupations, providing details on an occupation’s classification, main duties, educational requirements, and other pertinent information. It classifies every occupation in Canada on a chart, with the left side of the chart listing skill levels, known as Tiers (TEERs), ranging from 0-5.

Skilled vs. Unskilled Work

  • Skilled Work: TEERs 0-3 are considered skilled work, encompassing positions with managerial/supervisory responsibilities and specialized training.
  • Unskilled Work: TEERs 4-5 are considered unskilled work, typically lacking managerial/supervisory responsibilities and specialized training.

Identifying Skilled Work

  • Managerial/Supervisory Responsibilities: Positions such as housekeeping supervisors or food service supervisors are classified as skilled work, whereas those working beneath them, like housekeepers and food servers, are considered to be in unskilled work roles.
  • Specialized Training: Skilled work encompasses a broad spectrum, from trades and professional roles like doctors, lawyers, and dentists, to technical professions such as carpenters, electricians, bookkeepers, and vet techs.

Implications for PR Process

  • Express Entry: Only skilled work qualifies for Express Entry, meaning experience as a server or hotel desk clerk may not contribute to PR eligibility.
  • Provincial Nominee Programs (PNP): Some PNP programs, like the BC PNP, provide opportunities for unskilled workers in certain categories

Considerations for PR Chances

Before accepting or changing jobs, individuals should consider how the role will impact their PR prospects. Transitioning from unskilled to skilled work may not always be the most advantageous move, and careful evaluation is essential.

By understanding the distinction between skilled and unskilled work as per IRCC’s definition, individuals can make informed decisions that align with their PR aspirations in Canada.