Canada Launches New Work Route: The Recognized Employer Pilot (REP)

The Recognized Employer Pilot (REP) aims to simplify the hiring process and reduce administrative burdens for repeat employers in the Temporary Foreign Worker (TFW) Program, provided they have a track record of adhering to program requirements.

The Recognized Employer Pilot (REP)

Usually, employers must secure a Labor Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) before applying for a work permit to employ a foreign worker. An LMIA confirms the necessity of hiring a foreign worker and the unavailability of Canadians or permanent residents for the job. It also verifies the legitimacy of the job offer and the employer's compliance with program prerequisites to ensure worker protection.

To join the REP initiative, employers should possess a minimum of three positive LMIAs within the last five years for the same occupation from a list of in-demand occupations based on Canadian Occupational Projection System (COPS) data.

Upon recognition, employers can access LMIA validity periods of up to 36 months and simplified LMIA applications for future hiring of additional workers if needed.

The evaluation of a REP application will rely on the employer's past adherence to the TFW Program and the frequency of their utilization of the Program to fulfill positions in high-demand categories.

Qualified Employers Can Anticipate:

  1. Streamlined application procedures for upcoming LMIA applications for roles listed in COPS.
  2. Reduced interactions between participating employers and ESDC during the pilot, facilitated by simplified LMIA forms that allow employers to engage additional Temporary Foreign Workers for legitimate job offers under REP.
  3. A Job Bank designation signifying their acknowledged status, enhancing appeal among potential employees.

Dual-Purpose Application for REP and LMIA to Streamline Employer Eligibility

Employers projected to fulfill the REP eligibility prerequisites will receive proactive invitations to employ a dual-purpose LMIA application, distinct from the standard LMIA procedure. Employers can simultaneously seek recognized status under REP and apply for the LMIA through this approach.

ESDC will evaluate REP eligibility by considering the employer's track record within the TFW Program. In cases where recognized status isn't granted, employers can still avail the TFW Program, with the Department consistently evaluating their LMIA submissions.

When To Expect The Program

The implementation of REP will occur in two phases:

  • The initial stage commences in September 2023, permitting employers within the Primary Agriculture category to submit applications for the upcoming 2024 season.
  • The second stage, starting in January 2024, extends the application opportunity to encompass all other industries.

Submissions for both categories will be welcome until September 2024.

How to Apply For the REP

There exist two methods to initiate applications for an LMIA and REP:

  1. Employers can employ the LMIA Online Portal, a secure and dependable platform facilitating the online completion and submission of applications to ESDC.
  2. Alternatively, if the employer possesses a legitimate exemption from the LMIA Online Portal requirement, they can email a PDF application form to ESDC.

The evaluation of a REP application hinges on the employer's record of adherence to the TFW Program and their frequency of utilizing the Program to fulfill roles in high-demand occupations.

Additionally, ESDC plans to conduct informative sessions for stakeholders, delivering technical insights into REP and its application procedure. Additional specifics will be disclosed in the near future.

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