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Why are Immigrants Leaving Canada?

Immigrants leaving Canada might have privileges

False information may be tarnishing the perception of Canada. Recent headlines questioning why immigrants are leaving the country have prompted a deeper examination of the challenges and misconceptions facing newcomers and immigrants. Recent news headlines have raised a pressing question: Why are immigrants leaving Canada? Here is my interview at CTV News. Behind this inquiry lies a complex web of challenges and misconceptions that deserve our attention. 

Firstly, let's acknowledge the challenges we face as immigrants in Canada. It's not easy navigating a new country, or culture, and being overlooked for a promotion. We may encounter biases, discrimination, and systemic barriers that can make our career journey challenging. It's natural to feel discouraged at times, especially when faced with setbacks or frustrations. Ban On Canadian Experience Won't Solve Bias! (

One prevalent myth and fear-mongering stat is the belief that 80-90% of jobs are hidden, and online applications don't work. Another misconception suggests that only those with extensive connections and prestigious education can secure six-figure jobs in Canada. Immigrants need to do research before moving based on the labour markets and skills inventories.

Breaking the Myth of the Hidden Job Market and Applicant Tracking System (ATS)

Have you heard the statistic that 80-90% of jobs are never posted? or Resume doesn't get read by recruiters and gets rejected by ATS all the time? This statement often arises in webinars, discussions, and coaching sessions. But let's challenge this narrative.

While networking is crucial, relying solely on it can be daunting for immigrants, newcomers, and underrepresented job seekers. Statements like "online applications don't work" or "hiring managers hire people they like" may inadvertently promote affinity bias, favouring those who share similar backgrounds and experiences. A biased statement like this takes away accountability from immigrants who are trying to settle. It makes it easier to finger-point the system than working on the skill gaps. Employers promoting Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, discouraging online applications in favour of networking may inadvertently perpetuate biases and discrimination. The hidden job market isn't as vast as claimed. Many jobs, especially in the public sector, must be posted for compliance reasons, and some never get posted due to confidentiality or internal moves. I am not questioning the hidden job market but the stats which are still being used from newspaper days. There is no one-size-fits-all to navigate career journey. Immigrants and newcomers to Canada need customized career strategies with the right tools and resources.

It's crucial to prioritize honesty and integrity in your job search, rather than resorting to tactics aimed at tricking Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) or manipulating your resume's formatting. While some may advocate for keyword stuffing or using white fonts to bypass ATS filters, such methods are ultimately futile and can be easily detected during the interview process. Instead of focusing on gaming the system, concentrate on presenting yourself authentically and showcasing your qualifications in the best possible light. The presentation, layout, and content of your resume play pivotal roles in capturing the attention of hiring managers and securing interview opportunities. Don't believe the myth about ATS-compliant resumes, or ATS-proof hacks

Moreover, it's essential to tailor your applications to the specific roles you're genuinely interested in and qualified for. Applying indiscriminately to numerous positions online without considering your suitability for each role is counterproductive and wastes both your time and the recruiters'.

Your qualifications, presentation, and suitability for the role should be your primary focus when seeking employment opportunities. Your resume is about matching the needs of future employers with your past experience, instead of an objective statement on the resume work on what value you could bring.

Many of our immigrant clients have successfully navigated the Canadian job market by investing in closing the skill gap rather than solely relying on connections or costly upgrades/ certifications. They have landed roles that align with their expertise and aspirations, debunking the notion that success is reserved for a privileged few. The majority of our clients applied online and landed 6-figures roles within a couple of months of working with us.

It's crucial to spotlight the stories of immigrants who have chosen to stay and thrive in Canada despite facing bias and discrimination. They have bravely confronted challenges such as the pay gap and the need for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging (DEIB) initiatives in the workplace.

These immigrants have refused to be defined by stereotypes or limited by systemic barriers. Instead, they have fought back against injustice, advocating for fair treatment and equal opportunities. Their resilience and determination serve as a beacon of hope for those navigating similar obstacles.

As a community, we must amplify these voices and conversations. We need to challenge myths, and misconceptions, dismantle barriers, and create a more inclusive and equitable society for all immigrants in Canada. As we continue to navigate the challenges of establishing ourselves in Canada, it's essential to address the myths that often cloud our perceptions of success. 

Take my client, Rajesh, a Finance Operations Manager, who got no interviews even through referral. He thought the rejection was related to no Canadian experience. He said on our first call " I regret moving to Canada". The same client landed a job within five weeks, approximately 5 hourly sessions, of working on his career and branding. He was featured in the news with the immigrant story. Not only did he secure a position, but he also received a six-figure salary and a bonus, far exceeding his expectations. His success serves as a testament to the power of investing in oneself and believing in the possibilities that lie ahead. Sometimes it is not about blaming the system but working around the strength you already have from back home to stand out.

Similarly, Rishi S, PMP a Project Manager, followed the guidance and secured offers and a six-figure role within the short time of moving to Canada. Rishi's dedication to implementing career and brand techniques paid off, turning his dream into a reality.  Success Stories | Teachndo Career Consultancy | Ontario

As we strive to build successful careers in Canada, it's crucial to address the persistent challenges related to salary gaps that disproportionately affect newcomers and immigrants. The impact of these disparities is significant and alarming, particularly in the private sector, where immigrants who have been in Canada for more than a decade are paid 8% less than Canadian-born workers. Similarly, in the public sector, newcomers are paid 3% less than Canadian-born workers in the private sector report is  here . The lack of salary transparency exacerbates this issue, especially for newcomers who may not have access to vital information or the confidence to negotiate fair compensation. Companies that enforce Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDAs) regarding salary only contribute to perpetuating the pay gap. Companies need to be transparent about salary ranges to ensure fairness and equity for all employees. 

But how does one navigate toward the top salary range? This question deserves attention and clarity. By understanding the factors that contribute to salary advancements, newcomers can better position themselves for success and fair compensation. How To Answer What Is Your Salary Expectations & Negotiate? ( . It's important to note that these gaps widen further for women and People of Color (POC). Data consistently show disparities in earnings between genders, with females earning approximately 87 cents per hour relative to their male counterparts in Ontario over the past decade.

Immigrants enrich the workforce and should be hired based on talent, not just cultural fit but a cultural add. Canada is a home of opportunity, but corporate mindsets must evolve to ensure fair competition. 

Free career services and newcomer bridging programs may be falling short.

In 2017, following a layoff, I availed myself of outplacement services provided in my severance package. After the expiration of these services, I sought to utilize taxpayer-funded employment services, eager to contribute back to the community by leading webinars and sharing insights gained from my experience as a hiring manager at award-winning companies.

However, my interactions with reputable non-profit employment agencies left me disheartened. While intending to leverage their free webinars to understand their job search strategies, I found the offerings lacking in depth and relevance. Instead of tailored support for highly skilled workers like myself, the programs seemed geared towards providing basic cultural orientation rather than practical workforce insights.

Despite attending numerous free training sessions for job seekers over the years, I've observed a widening gap in the quality of services. This disparity could stem from consultants' limited access to tools and resources, as well as their overwhelming caseloads, which compromise service delivery.

In essence, I've identified significant gaps in taxpayer-funded services, which ultimately impact all stakeholders. To foster the success of immigrants in the workforce, we must address these shortcomings. Immigrants bring valuable skills and qualifications but require personalized guidance and access to appropriate resources. Simply advising newcomers to pursue entry-level positions or "bridge jobs" as a means of gaining Canadian experience does not constitute a viable long-term career strategy.

I have a few clients who went through funded programs without results, one of my clients, who took free funded employment services, a bridging program bravely shared her experience, labelling it a 'waste of her time.'  She was bold enough to speak out because she was frustrated. Her story was also picked by CBC News. in Canada. Why Employment Services job search support lacks quality in Canada (

My client's dissatisfaction with the services provided highlights a systemic problem that needs urgent attention. It's imperative to address the root causes behind the lack of effectiveness in employment support programs. The perception of Canada might be damaged by ineffective bridging programs.

As immigrants, let's adapt, learn, and invest in our success before blaming the system which certainly has gaps. Let's share our stories, acknowledging the challenges while uplifting each other. You left home, not your skills behind. You've got this.

Together, let's break barriers and embrace our journey towards success in Canada. Leaving Canada might come with privileges at times. Let's celebrate immigrants who have stayed here in Canada despite all the odds.

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Sweta Regmi is a hiring manager from award-winning companies turned Founder and CEO at Teachndo, a Certified Career & Résumé Strategist and Personal Branding Strategist. Regmi was named Top Job Search Expert and Top Career Advisor to follow on LinkedIn. Her insights have been featured in Prime-time news such as CBC National, Global National Top Stories, CNBC, Wall Street Journal, HuffPost, City News, CTV, The Globe and Mail, Forbes, LinkedIn News, indeed, Career Conferences, and over 100+ top media. Regmi is also the Amazon Best Seller of 21 Resilient Women: Stories of Courage, Growth, and Transformation. The book has been recognized by libraries, ministers, and MPs in Canada. Her RBC Canadian Women Entrepreneur Awards nomination by Women of Influence in 2022 and 2023, CPC Awards of Excellence 2023, and Outstanding Career Professional: HONOURABLE MENTION further demonstrates her success as a recognized career expert in Canada.


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