How to Apply for a Job in Canada

Applying for a job can be a complicated process; fortunately, the more you do it, the better you will become at it! To apply for a job in Canada, whether you already live there or not, you’ll need to organize a bit of paperwork, search for a job, fill out the application, and attend an interview.

Organizing Paperwork

1-Find out if you are eligible to enter Canada if you don’t already live there. Non-residents will need to legally enter Canada before they can start working. Being a national security threat, violating international human rights, having a criminal record of certain crimes, having a health condition that’s dangerous to public health, or being unable to support yourself financially upon entering Canada are all reasons you may be found inadmissible.[1]
Visit the government immigration website of Canada at for more information on your admissibility into the country.

2-Obtain a work permit if you will need one. Non-residents of Canada will need to either immigrate, get a temporary work permit, or work as a student. There are a few jobs that do not require a work permit, such as foreign government officials, performance artists, athletic team members, and emergency service providers.[2]
To see a complete list and get more information about jobs that do not require a work permit in Canada, visit the official government immigration website at
You can apply for a work permit online at You’ll need to have access to a scanner or camera to create electronic copies of your documents, such as your passport, as well as a valid credit card to pay the $155 fee. The website also provides instructions on how to submit a paper application if you prefer.

3-Apply for a Social Insurance Number (SIN) if you don’t already have one. If you were born in Canada, you probably already have an SIN. You will need to provide this number to future employers. If you were not born in Canada, you’ll need to apply for an SIN when you arrive to the country.
To apply for a Canadian SIN, visit the official government SIN website at .

4-Write a resume or curriculum vitae. A resume is also called a Curriculum Vitae (CV) in Canada. It is a 1-page summary of your job experiences and qualifications, and is required by most employers. List your contact information at the top, then detail your education and dates of graduation, your job experience (beginning with the most recent), and your relevant skills.[3]
Be sure to proofread your resume or CV carefully, as employers may consider errors a red flag that you do not pay attention to detail.

Searching for Jobs

1-Research companies where you want to work. A good way to find a job is to look up specific companies in your field on the Internet. For instance, if you’re a lawyer, start searching law firms in the area of Canada you’re planning to live. If you’re a chef, research restaurants in the area you’re moving to.[4]
When researching companies, consider if you think you’ll be a good match as an employee for them. If so, visit their employment page to see if they’re hiring and how to apply for a position.

2-Go to job fairs in your city or town. If you already live in Canada, meet employers and discuss jobs at local job fairs. Job fairs often occur on college campuses and in metropolitan business districts. Check when job fairs are happening near you by searching the web for the name of your city or town and job fairs.[5]
If you’re moving to Canada but are not sure where you want to live, visit job fairs in several towns.

3-Check Job Bank or other websites for current job postings. Job Bank is a large job search website through the Canadian government that has up to 2,000 new job postings every day. You can search any type of job for any area of Canada through the search engine.[6]
Visit Job Bank at for more information.

4-Use an employment agency for help. There are both private and government-based employment agencies in Canada that can assist you in finding a job. Find a Service Center Canada for lists of government employment services and training help.
The Service Center Canada website is

5-Talk to family and friends about jobs near you. Some jobs aren’t advertised, and the only way you’ll find out about them is through word of mouth. Let your family, friends, and neighbors know that you’re looking for a job in a certain field.[7]

Applying and Interviewing

1-Write a cover letter for the specific job you’re applying for. A cover letter tells a specific employer why you should be considered for their company. It is usually 1 or 2 short paragraphs. When writing a cover letter, it’s helpful to research the company to see exactly what they’re looking for in employees.[8]

2-Fill out the job application completely and honestly. When you find a company that’s hiring that you are interested in working for, spend as much time as you need filling out their application. Remember that the application and your resume and cover letter are the only information about you that the company has so far, so you’ll want to make sure they are impressive.[9]
Be sure that your application is free of grammar and spelling mistakes. Ask a friend or acquaintance to proofread it for you before submitting it.

3-Show up on time and well-dressed for your interview. If a company likes your application, resume, and cover letter, they will invite you to come in for an interview. Smile and be confident during the interview. Remember that not only is the company interviewing you, you are interviewing them.[10]
Be prepared to answer questions about your background, experience, knowledge, and expertise in the field for which you are interviewing.
Dress professionally in clean, wrinkle-free clothes that are suitable for the workplace.

4-Follow up with the company in 2-3 days. If a company is very impressed with you, you may get a job offer immediately. However, it’s common for a company to take a few days or even a week to finish their round of interviews before deciding who they will hire for the position. Take a moment to write an email or call the individuals who interviewed you to thank them for their time.[11]
In your message or email, say something like, “I wanted to thank you again for your time and say it was a pleasure to meet you. I look forward to hearing back from you about the position I interviewed for.” Leave your contact information again at the end of the message.