Canada’s 2022 Express Entry Annual Report: Key Insights and Trends
Canada’s Express Entry system is a key component of the country’s immigration policy. It grants skilled workers the opportunity to apply for permanent residence through a competitive and transparent process. The annual report on the Express Entry system provides valuable insights into the trends, outcomes, and characteristics of the candidates who participated in the system in 2022. In this article, we will review some of the key findings from the report, such as:
- The number and profile of invitations issued.
- The distribution and ranking of candidates by occupation, education, language ability, and country of origin.
- The preferences of candidates regarding their destination provinces and territories.
Express Entry system and its purpose
Express Entry is a system that oversees applications for permanent residence from skilled workers who want to immigrate to Canada. It aims to select candidates who have the best chances of succeeding in the Canadian labor market and contributing to the economy.
Three core programs within Express Entry: CEC, FSWP, and FSTP.
There are three core programs under Canada immigration Express Entry:
- The Canadian Experience Class (CEC)
- The Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSWP)
- The Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP)
Each program has its eligibility criteria based on factors such as work experience, education, language skills, and occupation.
The role of the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) in candidate evaluation.
To apply through Express Entry, candidates must build an online profile and enter the pool of candidates. They are then ranked according to the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS), which assigns points for various human capital factors, such as age, education, work experience, language ability, and adaptability. In principle, the highest-ranking candidates are invited to apply for permanent residence through regular draws. Although, this is currently changing with the recent implementation of occupation-specific draws.
Profile Submissions and Gender Distribution in 2022
The number of profiles submitted in 2022 and previous years
- In 2022, more than 400,000 people submitted their profiles to Express Entry. This is a slight decrease of 3% from 2021.
The gender distribution of profile submissions
- In 2022, 44% of the profiles were from female applicants.
- The percentage of profile submissions that qualified for at least one program remained consistent for men from 2020 to 2022 at 71%. However, for women, there was a marginal uptick in 2022 compared to previous years, reaching 78%.
- More women are pursuing career opportunities in Canada and benefiting from the gender-neutral selection criteria of Express Entry.
Analysis of changes in the eligibility criteria for Express Entry
- Another important factor that influenced the profile submissions for Canada Immigration in 2022 was the changes in the eligibility criteria for Express Entry. In November 2021, IRCC announced several modifications to the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) that awards scores to applicants based on their human capital elements, such as age, education, work experience, language ability, and adaptability. Some of the rule changes are:
- More points for speaking French
- Fewer points for having family in Canada
- New points for having a Canadian trade certificate
- The rule changes are to make the Express Entry system better for Canada’s economy and society.
CRS Scores and Additional Points
CRS scores are used in ranking candidates.
One of the main criteria for selecting candidates for immigration to Canada is the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score. The CRS score is a numerical value that reflects the skills, education, language ability, work experience, and other factors of each candidate. The higher the CRS score, the higher the chances of receiving an invitation to apply (ITA) for permanent residence.
Notable changes in the distribution of additional points compared to previous years
Your CRS score depends on your skills and background. It helps you get permanent residency in Canada. You can get extra points under factors that typically show an increased capacity to adapt to your new life in Canada. For example:
- Having a Canadian education
- Knowing French
- Having one of your siblings reside in Canada.
- These extra points can help you rank higher than other candidates, especially when many people are applying.
The number of extra points for some things has changed over time. This is because Canada wants to welcome different kinds of immigrants. For example:
- In 2017, they added additional points for French speakers.
- In 2020, they added points for having a sibling in Canada.
Invitations to Apply (ITAs) in 2022
The COVID-19 pandemic came out with a big drop in ITAs for permanent residence in Canada in 2022. The government stopped issuing ITAs from March to June 2022 under all immigration programs. Many applicants and stakeholders felt abandoned and frustrated.
Demographic Distribution of ITAs
According to the latest data from Canada Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), the demographic distribution of ITAs in 2022 shows some interesting trends:
- The gender gap among ITA recipients has narrowed significantly, with women accounting for 48% of the total, up from 41% in 2021.
- The age distribution of ITA recipients remains towards younger candidates, with 79% of them being under 35 years old.
- The education and language proficiency levels of ITA recipients have increased, with 85% of them having at least a bachelor’s degree and 93% of them achieving a Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) of 7 or higher in English or French.
These demographic factors have a positive impact on the CRS scores of candidates, as they reflect the human capital and adaptability criteria that IRCC values in selecting economic immigrants.
Work Experience and Additional Points
Examination of the significance of Canadian and foreign work experience.
Work experience is a crucial factor in the Canadian immigration system, as it reflects the skills and abilities of candidates to contribute to the economy and society.
- Candidates with at least one year of skilled work in Canada get more points in the CRS. This can help them get permanent residence faster.
- Foreign work experience can also grant points, but typically also requires high language skills or a Canadian job offer.
Points assigned to candidates and their impact.
Canadian work experience can help some candidates more than others. For example, if you have low education or language skills, working in Canada can boost your overall score. If you have foreign work experience in a high-demand occupation, you may also have an edge. But work experience can affect candidates differently, let’s explore this further.
Top Occupations and Countries
The most common occupations among ITA recipients.
The Express Entry system selects candidates based on many criteria, including their occupation. The latest data from Immigration to Canada, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) shows that the most common occupations among ITA recipients in 2020 were:
- software engineers,
- information systems analysts,
- computer programmers,
- financial auditors,
- and administrative assistants.
These occupations show the high demand for skilled workers in Canada, especially in the technology sector.
The countries of residence and citizenship of ITA recipients.
The Express Entry system selects candidates for Canadian immigration based on their human capital factors. These factors include language proficiency, education level, and work experience. They show how well candidates can adapt to Canadian society and economy. The country of residence and citizenship of candidates also affect their human capital factors. In 2020, most ITA recipients lived in India, Nigeria, China, Pakistan, or the United States. India alone had 43% of the total ITA recipients by citizenship.
Destination Provinces and Processing Time
Breakdown of the provinces where Express Entry applicants settled.
According to the latest data from Canada Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), Express Entry applicants settled in different provinces across Canada in 2022. The majority of them chose Ontario (54%), followed by British Columbia (17%), Alberta (11%), and Manitoba (5%). The other provinces and territories received less than 5% of each of the total Express Entry admissions.
Analysis of the increase in processing times in 2022.
However, the processing times for Express Entry applications increased significantly in 2022 due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the operational challenges faced by IRCC. The normal processing time for Express Entry applications was 9 months in 2022, compared to 6 months in 2021.
Impact of processing times on various categories of applicants.
The increase in processing times affected applicants differently. For example, applicants who applied under the Canadian Experience Class (CEC) or the (PNP) Provincial Nominee Program had faster processing times than those who applied under the (FSWP) Federal Skilled Worker Program or the Federal Skilled Trades Program (FSTP). This is because CEC and PNP applicants already have a genuine job offer or a provincial nomination, which makes their applications more straightforward and less likely to require additional verification or documentation.
The 2022 Express Entry annual report provides a comprehensive overview of the performance and outcomes of Canada’s flagship economic immigration program. Express Entry is being adapted to Canada’s immigration goals. Several factors have been fine-tuned to address timely immigration needs and better align with provincial and territorial programs. Express Entry will help Canada’s economy and society by bringing and retaining skilled workers. They can fill labor market gaps and enrich Canada’s culture.
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