Express Entry: Canada’s fast-track immigration.

by Northen Road, January 14th, 2022
Express Entry: Canada’s fast-track immigration.

Author: Yan Desjardins, Founder & Executive Director

About Canada’s Express Entry Program

Back in the 1960s, Canada led by example by introducing a point-based immigration selection program. The previous program paved the way for today’s Express Entry scoring system. Many countries have since followed Canada’s leading example and implemented similar programs.

The Express Entry program is a point-based system that assesses skilled immigrants based on a set of specific requirements. There are three main categories of skilled immigrants under the Express Entry program. For more information on the different permanent residence immigration programs, visit our blog section, where you will find a blog on each of the categories.

In order to be selected from the pool of candidates, the applicants must complete an online profile that will provide each person with a personalized Express Entry score.

Once applicants have received their Express entry score, they must wait to be selected by the Government of Canada within a round of invitations. Once selected, the candidates will receive an Invitation To Apply for Permanent Residence. Let’s take a closer look at the Express Entry scoring system.

The Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS)

How Does The Comprehensive Ranking System Work?

The Express Entry scoring system that assesses applicants’ profiles is called the Comprehensive Ranking System or the CRS. There are 4 distinct factor groups where candidates can accumulate points.

Group A: Core Human Capital Factors.

This Express Entry scoring group includes the core eligibility requirements such as age, education, language proficiency, and Canadian work experience. Candidates can score maximum points between 460 to 500 points.


Group B: Spouse or Common-Law Partner Factors.

If you have a spouse or a common-law partner, you can accumulate extra Express Entry score points for their educational background, language abilities, and previous in-Canada work experience. The maximum number of points for this group is 40.


Group C: Skills Transferability Factors

This Entry scoring group gives applicants the chance to combine their education, foreign work experience, and strong language skills for extra Express Entry score points. With these factors, candidates can accumulate up to 100 additional points.


Group D: Additional Points.

Candidates can get extra Express Entry score points for having a sibling living in Canada, speak French, previous studies in Canada, or having arranged employment. In addition, securing a certificate of Provincial Nomination will give candidates an extra 600 points.


Groups A, B, and C will give candidates a maximum of 600 points. Also, candidates can obtain a maximum of additional 600 points under group D.

The total maximum Express Entry score is 1200 points.

1.2 Tips for evaluating your Express Entry score

The first step

Determine whether you can claim your foreign work experience for the Express Entry program.

The second step

Determine your language proficiency in either of the official Canadian languages. If you do not have language test results already, schedule a language test at your nearest accredited language center.

The third step

Ensure your educational credentials are recognized in Canada. You will need to complete a Canadian Educational Credential Assessment. Contact our office today for additional help in determining your eligibility for the Express Entry program.

While this is not a comprehensive list of all of the requirements for the Express Entry program, they are the first 3 essential steps to complete to get ready to immigrate to Canada with Express Entry.

Skilled Employment That Qualifies For The Express Entry Program

There are 5 employment categories in Canada, all of them with different skill sets. The National Occupation Classification (NOC) list defines all of the categories. You must determine if your past employment experience falls within the correct classification of skilled employment for your Express Entry score.

Skill type 0

Management jobs. The work experience can be claimed regardless of the industry. The position can vary from entry-level to specialized management to qualify for your Express Entry score.

Skill type A

Professional jobs that require a university or college degree. Licensed professionals such as dentists or doctors and other highly skilled workers fall within this skill type of the Express Entry program.

Skill type B

Technical or skilled trades jobs that usually require a college education, specialized or apprenticeship training. Plumbers, electricians, bakers, and chefs are a few examples and are compatible with the Express Entry scoring system.

Skill type C

Intermediate jobs that require a high school degree or specific on-the-job training. Butchers, truck drivers, cashiers, and other mid-level entry jobs would fall under this skill type. These jobs do not qualify for the Express Entry score.

Skill type D

Labor jobs. These jobs are primarily entry-level and do not require higher education credentials. For example, fruits and vegetable pickers, cleaning personnel, or other entry-level positions would not qualify for the Express Entry program.

Only jobs in skill types 0, A, or B can qualify you for permanent residence in Canada under the Express Entry program.

Express Entry: The Next Steps

Qualified candidates

Express Entry candidate profiles are valid for 12 months and must be re-submitted after the expiration.

Once your candidate profile is completed, the Express Entry program system will place it in a pool of qualified candidates to compete with all of the other candidate profiles in the pool. Candidates with the required Express Entry score will move on to the next step for the rounds of invitations.

Invitation to apply for permanent residence

Periodically, the Government of Canada sends out invitations to apply (ITA) for permanent residence to qualified candidates. The invitations are based on a minimum Express Entry score. However, the threshold can vary based on a multitude of factors.

  • Immigration targets
  • Provincial nominations
  • Labor market needs or skill shortage in Canada.

These are only some of the reasons that can drive a minimum Express Entry score. Applicants with the minimum express entry score or higher are most likely to receive an invitation to apply for permanent residence.

How can Northern Road help you?

Northern Road is a fully foreign-Canadian-owned and licensed immigration consulting business that can help ignite your dreams and go further. We accompany our clients every step of the way as they embark on this new life journey.

Take our self-assessment test today to see if you qualify for the Express Entry program and receive a free assessment.