What is the Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS)?
The Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) is criteria used by the Canadian Express Entry system to score candidates who apply through the federal government’s skilled worker programs. These programs include the Federal Skilled Worker Program, the Federal Skilled Trades Program, and the Canadian Experience Class. These are all designed to meet in-demand occupations that will continue to have deficits on the rise within the next five years across all of Canada’s provinces, apart from Québec which has its own skilled worker program.
The Express Entry system was created in 2015 to fast-track certain applications (more specifically those of critically skilled workers) in order to steady the economic gaps that continue to grow in these sectors. So far the number of Invitations to Apply (ITAs) for permanent residence issued has grown from 31, 063 to 89, 800 in 2018. The Canadian government has unveiled plans to welcome over a million more immigrants into its workforce within the next three years, spelling a promising future for skilled workers looking to immigrate to Canada. These Canadian immigration points assist the government in selecting the best candidates for immigration.
How CRS Points Are Scored
The overall Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score is broken up into different sections with different combinations resulting in higher points. If you have a spouse, their profile is also taken into account as a secondary-applicant which means that they don’t add extra points to your total, they simply add a small percentage of the total.
|Criteria||Max Points Awarded (with Spouse)||Max Points Awarded (without Spouse)|
|Level of Education||140||150|
|Official Language Proficiency||150||160|
|Canadian Work Experience||70||80|
|Section B (Spouse or Common-law Partner)|
|Criteria||Max Points Awarded|
|Level of Education||10|
|Official Language Proficiency||20|
|Canadian Work Experience||10|
|Education||Max Points Awarded|
|With good language proficiency + a post-secondary degree||50|
|With Canadian work experience + a post-secondary degree||50|
|Foreign Work Experience||Max Points Awarded|
|With good official language proficiency + foreign work experience||50|
|With Canadian work experience + foreign work experience||50|
|Certificate of Qualification (trades occupations)||Max Points Awarded|
|With good language proficiency + a certificate of qualification||50|
|Criteria||Max Points Awarded|
|Brother or sister living in Canada||15|
|French Language Proficiency||30|
|Post-secondary Education in Canada||30|
Improving Your Comprehensive Ranking Score
There are so many ways you can improve your CRS score based on the criteria above. The main methods are to work on your experience in your field as well as your level of education. It also helps to have some connection to Canada through studies or prior work experience.
There are certain factors of the CRS that you can not necessarily change, such as your age. In terms of how the points are broken down, candidates between the ages of 20 and 29 score the highest for this category, so it’s best to immigrate as early on as possible. However, it’s all a balancing act in terms of getting qualified and experience in your field in order to be eligible for the other criteria and score highly there as well.
A big way to add to your CRS score is to achieve a Provincial Nomination. You can apply for this through a specific province in Canada from within the Express Entry system. This works by submitting an Expression of Interest (EOI) to your chosen province (or waiting for them to send you a Notification of Interest [NOI]). If you meet their specific criteria (such as being on their in-demand occupations list) you will be invited to create a profile through their selection system. If you are successful in achieving the nomination you will be award 600 additional points for your Express Entry profile. Since the average Canadian immigration points have never exceeded 500 points, you are guaranteed to be drawn from the pool, granted you meet the other requirements for your selected program.
Express Entry Draw Trends
It can be useful to measure your score and background against some statistics from previous years in order to get a sense of where you fall into the Express Entry pool as well as your chances of being issued with an ITA in the next draw. The sizes of the draws are increasing in order to accommodate the number of workers needed to immigrate with 2019 looking like the biggest intake yet.
There were 86, 023 ITAs issued in 2017 of which 50% of candidates had no additional points, 46% checked only one of the additional point types and 4% had two additional point types. These additional Canadian immigration points are awarded for the criterion mentioned above but there is a reminder of these categories below.
Additional point types
- Provincial Nomination achieved
- Arranged employment
- Canadian education credits
- French language proficiency
- A sibling in Canada
A trend that continued from 2017 to 2018 is that most ITAs were issued for the Federal Skilled Worker Program which means that while it is the most popular of the three pathways offered by the Express Entry system, it might be useful to see if you are eligible for the other two where quotas may not be completely filled.
There were 89, 800 ITAs issued in 2018 which is quite a significant increase from the 2017 statistics, effectively adding the equivalent of another draw to the total. The peak CRS in 2018 was 456 while the minimum was 439. With the highest average score of 2019 so far sitting at 454 points, candidates still stand a good chance of being drawn if they score higher. The minimum CRS is also predicted to stay low as draws start happening more frequently and issue more ITAs than ever before.
How We Can Help You Apply Through the Express Entry System
Sign up today to begin your journey towards immigration as a skilled worker through the Express Entry system. With the help of our dedicated Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultants (RCICs) you’re certain to be given the best chance of being selected. These knowledgeable professionals are experts on the different immigration policies and programs offered by the federal government. They assist you in gathering the necessary documents and making decisions that will boost your score the most based on your specific skills and experience.
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