Payroll administrators from countries throughout the world can now immigrate to Canada through the Federal Skilled Worker (FSW) program of the Express Entry system.

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The change to the FSW which made that possible came on Nov. 16 when Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) added 16 new jobs to its list of eligible occupations under that worker immigration program.

359 occupations now eligible under the Federal Skilled Worker program

That increased the number of eligible occupations under the FSW on the same day the National Occupational Classification (NOC) 2021 came into effect at the IRCC to 359.

The 16 new occupations are all deemed to be jobs for which the worker must get a college diploma, an apprenticeship training of less than two years, or more than six months of on-the-job training.

The full list of newly-added jobs on the list of eligible occupations under the FSW includes:

  • NOC 13102 Payroll administrators
  • NOC 33100 Dental assistants and dental laboratory assistants
  • NOC 33102 Nurse aides, orderlies and patient service associates
  • NOC 33103 Pharmacy technical assistants and pharmacy assistants
  • NOC 43100 Elementary and secondary school teacher assistants
  • NOC 43200 Sheriffs and bailiffs
  • NOC 43201 Correctional service officers
  • NOC 43202 By-law enforcement and other regulatory officers
  • NOC 63211 Estheticians, electrologists and related occupations
  • NOC 73200 Residential and commercial installers and servicers
  • NOC 73202 Pest controllers and fumigators
  • NOC 73209 Other repairers and servicers
  • NOC 73300 Transport truck drivers
  • NOC 73301 Bus drivers, subway operators and other transit operators
  • NOC 73400 Heavy equipment operators
  • NOC 93200 Aircraft assemblers and aircraft assembly inspectors

Payroll administrators are the people who cut the paycheques, collect and verify payroll information, manage employees’ benefits and maintain accurate payroll information. Anyone who has ever had any job with any company in Canada has benefited from the work done by payroll administrators.

Companies are seeking payroll administrators with expertise and training

And as the Canadian economy has rebounded after the COVID-19 pandemic, employers have been adding more workers, creating an increased need for payroll administrators.

Jobbank, the federal government’s job board, gives a ranking of good to very good for the employment prospects of payroll administrators across Canada. The Indeed job website listed 683 jobs for these office workers in late December.

“Not so long ago, payroll was looked at as an administrative task that anyone could do,” says Peter Tzanetakis, president of the National Payroll Institute. “Today, it’s recognized as a career that requires training, expertise and investment.”

That 40,000-member strong association of Canadian payroll administrators, which was renamed in May 2022 after years of being known as the Canadian Payroll Association, provides member services and research and government advocacy initiatives.

Ottawa’s move to include payroll administrators in the list of eligible occupations under the FSW comes as human resources giant Randstad is encouraging employers to seek out foreign nationals to fill vacant positions.

“There shouldn’t be a lack of recognition for foreign education and experience within your recruitment process,” Randstad cautions on its website.

Human resources giant urges employers to recruit highly-skilled foreign nationals

“Yes, certain industries need specific skills or training that can only be certified in Canada. However, if you’re not within one of those industries, try to look at their education and find out a little more information on that school and how they might have been taught or trained there. Foreign experience can be beneficial to any company.”

Jobbank data reveals the median annual wage for a payroll administrator in Canada is $53,430.

Foreign nationals hoping to apply for permanent residence through the FSW must have one year of paid work experience within the last decade in jobs categorized as TEER 0, 1, 2, or 3 of the NOC 2021 system.

Applicants under this program must also take a language test to prove that they possess sufficient language skills to successfully establish themselves in Canada. Language tests evaluate an applicant’s abilities with regard to:

  • listening
  • speaking
  • reading
  • writing

In order to be eligible for the FSW, an applicant needs to obtain at least the Canadian Language Benchmark (CLB) level 7 in all categories and show that he or she has enough money to support him or herself and any relatives upon arrival in Canada.

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