The Express Entry program in Canada allows skilled workers wishing to immigrate, to get onto the fast track for PR. It is the new system of selection adopted for Canadian immigration for skilled workers, and assures faster processing of all PR cases. The Express Entry program is actually a system to manage how those with skilled work experience can apply for immigration, and involves the federal government and provincial governments along with employers in Canada. It is also an umbrella for other economic immigration programs like:

  • The Federal Skilled Worker Program (FSW) assesses an applicant’s potential for economic integration post immigration to Canada.
  • The Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) for select states like Ontario, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Saskatchewan, Prince Edward Island
  • The Federal Skilled Trade Program is for those who are qualified in a skilled trade, and wish to become permanent residents on that account.
  • The Canadian Experience Class is an ideal category for temporary foreign workers or those who have a work visa who wish to become permanent residents.

Here are some of the different PNPs available to those who have made an Express Entry profile. A candidate can apply to any of these provinces to get 600 additional points, to get into the league of the highly ranked candidates and increase his chance of receiving an Invitation To Apply (ITA).


Only those candidates who are eligible to immigrate under a federal economic immigration program can apply for the Express Entry program. There are 2 steps:

Online Profile Submission for Express Entry Pool

Interested candidates need to apply online for the Express Entry pool, by submitting their profiles. These profiles will capture details like:

  • Education
  • Skills
  • Work experience
  • Language skills
  • Other details

The candidates who meet the required criteria for any one of the economic immigration programs will be accepted into the eligible pool of candidates. Please note, that entry into this pool is not a guarantee for an Invitation To Apply (ITA) for PR. And those invited will still need to pass the eligibility requirements under Canada’s Immigration and Refugee Protection Act. Those who do not have a job offer that is supported by the Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA), or haven’t received a nomination from a province or territory, have to register with the ESDC Job Bank, which will connect the candidates to potential Canadian employers. Alongwith this, candidates should also proactively connect with potential employers using online job boards, recruiters and other official methods. Having said this, it is important to keep in mind that any job offer received will need an LMIA from ESDC, without which the job offer will not receive points and will not be valid in Express Entry.

Invitation to apply for PR

These profiles are then screened and assessed by the provincial governments and employers in Canada. Candidates will be ranked basis their points in the Comprehensive Ranking System. These points are cumulated basis the profiles they submit. Candidates get more points if they have any of the following:

  • a job offer from a Canadian employer and / or
  • a nomination from a province or territory and / or
  • desired skills sets and relevant work experience

Additional points are given in the case of those candidates who have a job offer that is supported by the LMIA. These additional points can help candidates score a higher rank and increase their chances of receiving an invitation for PR. The best candidates are then shortlisted and invited to apply for PR. They will need to submit an online application for PR within 60 days of receiving the invite. Also, they will need to undergo some medical tests as well as receive security clearances as part of the process. The majority of complete applications with all the required supported documents will be processed by Canadian Immigration authorities within 6 months or less. The other candidates will continue to stay in the Express Entry pool for 12 months of profile submission, and some among these will get an invitation to apply for PR during this time. The ones who don’t can submit their Express Entry profile again after a year. If they still meet the criteria, they will be admitted to the eligible candidate pool. This will help avoid a pile of backlog, and ensure quicker processing of applications.