Tomorrow’s Workforce - the International Imperative

Even as communities increase efforts to provide relevant training for employees and job seekers, and to attract and retain talent and international students, demographics - such as forecasted retirements of the Baby Boomer generation and lower birth rates - are a signal that communities will be hard-pressed to meet the talent needs of their companies.

London, Ontario’s proposed Newcomer Strategy, Choose London, provides a framework for collective action to enhance London’s visibility as a destination of choice, and outlines some of the efforts required to effectively attract and retain newcomers. The London Economic Development Corporation (LEDC) continues to play its part in this collective venture and maintain a strong focus on supporting talent attraction for our key sectors, both domestically and internationally.

New ways to onshore global talent
Local, growing, and innovating London and area companies can now leverage two new opportunities to onshore talent.

The Government of Canada’s Global Skills Strategy  helps attract highly qualified talent from around the world to support the growth of companies in Canada, spurring innovation and driving our economy, ultimately creating more jobs as well as skills and training investments for Canadians.

As part of this strategy, there are two ways growing businesses can attract global talent:

  1. The Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC)’s Dedicated Service Channel. IRCC will provide personalized, client service delivery for companies making large, job-creating investments in Canada
  2. The Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) Global Talent Stream. This 24-month pilot under the Temporary Foreign Worker Program will support innovative Canadian companies that need access to global talent with unique and specialized skills in order to scale-up and grow

To help IRCC and ESDC identify Canadian and foreign companies making large, job-creating investments in Canada, and innovative Canadian companies, they are entering into Memorandums of Understanding (MOUs) with federal institutions, provincial and territorial governments, business incubators and accelerators, and other not-for-profit or non-governmental organizations for the purposes of making referrals to IRCC’s Dedicated Service Channel and ESDC’s GTS.

Hence where we come in - the LEDC recently signed an MOU with IRCC and ESDC to refer growing London companies to these programs. The LEDC is currently the only economic development agency in the region that can refer London and area businesses and will continue to on an ongoing basis until the pilot is completed in June 2019.

How can I be referred?
IRCC’s Dedicated Service Channel
This program is available only to those companies making significant investments. A significant investment is a new endeavour in an existing firm’s operations, or the entrance of a firm that is beginning operations in Canada that will result in a substantial improvement to the economy, without displacing jobs for Canadians.

LEDC can refer companies that are making large, job-creating investments to the IRCC’s Dedicated Service Channel to be linked with a dedicated “account manager”, who will provide the following services: information on available immigration program options; explanation of processes; linking investing companies to a relevant operational staff in Canada or abroad; and serving as a point of contact to ensure smooth communications.

ESDC's Global Talent Stream - Category A
Companies can be referred by LEDC to Category A if:

  • You’re a London and area company
  • Have a focus on innovation
  • Have a willingness to grow
  • Seeking to scale-up
  • Have a need for unique and specialized global talent, which is indicated by:
    • A highly paid position with an annual salary of at least $80,000,
    • Advanced knowledge of the industry,
    • Advanced degree in an area of specialization of interest to the employer, and/or
    • A minimum of 5 years’ experience in the field of specialized experience
  • Have identified a specific foreign worker for potential hire

If you’re a company in significant growth mode, contact Robert Collins, Director of Workforce Development at the LEDC, to learn more about this service.

ESDC's Global Talent Stream - Category B
Many employers in the London region can recruit specific talent through Category B of the GTS, where you do not need to be referred by a referral partner such as LEDC. In order to be eligible for this category, employers must commit to increasing skills and training investments and must be seeking to fill high-skilled occupations on the Global Talent Occupations list, including:

  • Engineering managers
  • Architecture and science managers
  • Computer and information systems managers
  • Computer engineers
  • Mathematicians and statisticians
  • And many more

There is no limit on the number of applications or positions requested per employer. You can learn more about applying to Category B here.

The Talent Approach
For over a decade, the LEDC has coordinated and supported a number of ventures to increase the attraction and utilization of newcomer talent, including:

  • Developing the Global Talent resources (2007) to facilitate newcomer success from the perspective of employers and job seekers
  • Promoting community access points for newcomer talent to employers
  • Developing information, resources, and materials which promotes working in London, such as our London Magazine and the Concierge guide that employers can utilize in their attraction approaches
  • Hosting employer sessions on immigration guidelines and processes
  • Promoting London career opportunities to the international talent on campuses and at Job Fairs in regional markets, and developing opportunities such as events and self–guided Discover London materials
  • Participating in a number of community endeavours with other employment and workforce services

To learn more about LEDC and other community talent development initiatives, visit

Suggested News

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  • Take your Talents to the Next Level
  • Matching Talent to Employers

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Ashley Conyngham

Director, Marketing and Communications

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