New to Canada? This strategy might help you get your first job.
As someone new to Canada, like myself, one of the first things that comes to our minds is where we can find our first job opportunity. Ideally, we want to work in the same field we have been working in before landing in Canada, but it is sometimes impossible. At the same time, we try to avoid working in something more general labour-related (e.g., manufacturing, warehousing), as the shifts can be long and rotational, and the work can be physically demanding. So, how can you get a job working in an office environment (or remotely working from home) without Canadian experience? The answer: use your mother tongue to your advantage.
When I arrived in Canada, I had no Canadian experience, and my English skills were not that great (they still aren't, but they got a little better). So, while attending my language classes, I was trying to figure out a strategy to get my first job. What would differentiate me from the local competition? I decided to use my mother tongue: Portuguese.
Within two months, I started working as a Customer Representative, where I was helping clients in Brazil from our office in Toronto. The main requirements for this job were knowledge of video games (I love them) and... fluency in Portuguese. Once I got in, I improved my English skills, and I didn't have to rely on my mother tongue to get my second job. And, of course, you could do the same with whatever your native language is.
According to Statistics Canada, these are the most common non-official-language mother tongues spoken in Canada:
Panjabi (Punjabi): 459,985
Chinese, n.o.s. : 441,265
Tagalog (Pilipino, Filipino): 384,050
Remember that Canada is a multicultural country, and many companies take advantage of it to do business internationally. As an example, I typed "Portuguese" on Indeed for jobs in Toronto. As a result, I got 115 pages with 15 job opportunities each. Of course, many job postings were probably expired or unrelated to the language ("Portuguese Bakery," for example). But it gives us an idea that it is common to find a job where your mother tongue will be valuable for you to get a job.
So, if you are new to Canada and are looking for a job, perhaps this strategy can help you find your first Canadian work experience. If your mother tongue is either English or French, you also have an advantage as you are ahead of those who are still not fluent in one of the two official languages in Canada.
By the way, I have created a group on Telegram where I share job opportunities that require Portuguese. So, if you are interested, you are more than welcome to join us.
"I was 17, confused and thought I was a lost cause. I became homeless. I heard about Safe Haven's youth shelter, but was skeptical and scared. [But] the staff are extremely friendly and so supportive...I wasn't judged. They showed me how to cook, do a budget, and even helped me with my homework."