November 1, 2021
Eastern Ontario is home to beautiful waterfronts, historic cities and towns, booming industry, and nearly 2 million residents. That 2 million now includes 5 new Canadians and 10 residents eligible for the status because of local medical tubing manufacturer, GlobalMed, and the Ontario Immigration Nominee Program (OINP).
The OINP is a pilot program launched by the provincial government to help foreign workers and international students apply for permanent residency through local work opportunities in eastern Ontario. There are 150 spaces in the program, serving the areas of Chatham-Kent, Cornwall, Quinte West, and Belleville.
Here’s how GlobalMed Human Resources Manager, Mary Anne Stam, used the program to hire 15 new employees:
Filling Talent Gaps
GlobalMed had a talent gap problem. Mary Anne Stam needed to fill technical positions with mechanical engineering and lab skills. GlobalMed makes medical tubing products that must meet a specific medical device global standard so their hires must understand those processes, be able to troubleshoot and make informed decisions during production.
Stam found those hires at Loyalist College, in the Engineering Program and the Biotechnology Diploma. Fifteen recent hires were international students who received degrees or certification in engineering or skilled trades then came to Canada to complete graduate degrees at Loyalist. Through these hires, Stam learned about opportunities through the Ontario Immigration Nominee Program. On the nature of working with the OINP, Stam says, “To walk through this particular process, you don’t need a lawyer, or immigration specialist to counsel you as an employer. It’s a simple process.”
The International Student StreamThere are three streams employers can use to nominate new Canadians:
- Foreign Worker Stream: for workers in skilled positions
- International Student Stream: for recent grads in Ontario
- In-Demand Skills Stream: for intermediate skilled workers in specific sectors (like agriculture, construction, trucking, and personal support workers)
GlobalMed used the International Student Stream, in which the nomination was driven by the candidate because hiring them enabled these candidates to start the process for permanent residency. Some paperwork and knowledge of National Occupational Classifications (NOCs) was required to complete the process and Stam says it does require “hands on learning…” but that “to date we have 15 employees who have succeeded in being nominated for their Permanent residency, and a few have succeeded in obtaining their PR.”
A New Recruitment Tool
Now, since learning about the program, Stam uses OINP as a recruitment tool in her hiring process. The OINP allows employers like GlobalMed to grow their workforce and to benefit from the diversity and skills of international talent. Regarding the benefits of OINP, “I see the Ontario Immigration Nominee program as one positive and rewarding solution to help us navigate through this challenge by helping bring new workers, who desperately want to become new Canadians, and contribute in a meaningful way to the Canadian life, to build a better life, with better opportunities.”
As more new Canadians are welcomed into the communities of eastern Ontario, our region benefits as well. If you’re an employer in Chatham-Kent, Cornwall, Belleville, or Quinte West, the OINP can help you to attract a growing and varied workforce.
The Quinte Economic Development Commission (QEDC) provides information, connections, and resources for manufacturers in the Bay of Quinte. QEDC supports the region’s businesses and entrepreneurs as well as the local workforce.