By Rania Mostafa
The challenges immigrant HR professionals face in finding jobs are not limited to the level of their knowledge, experiences and skills, or the value they bring to the labour market in Canada, but also include a laundry list of many obstacles that make job search journey a tough one.
The non-recognition of the professional work experience the immigrant HR professionals had previously acquired in their countries disqualifies their entry into HR jobs. This means that they have a very limited or no chance to get Canadian work experience in their field. The stress set by employers to have the Canadian work experience as a requirement for professional employment makes it difficult for them to be qualified for HR professional jobs available in the Canadian market, which makes it difficult to acquire the Canadian experience and creates a dilemma of which comes first, a job in the Canadian market or the Canadian experience.
Weak professional network
Immigrant HR professionals start their job search journey with no professional network, which means no access to the job hidden market in the field that includes 85% of the jobs available according to many settlement & employment services agencies.
The ‘Hidden Job Market’ includes those jobs offered without being announced or advertised through the organization’s website, newspapers or social media. Only employers, managers, supervisors and some employees at that organization know about available jobs and current recruitment needs. Most of those jobs are offered to referrals or to professionals who are in a close network of key employees at the organization, who had a chance to apply.
Building a strong professional network takes a relatively long time while being out of practice. This means that while building a professional network to get the leverage the immigrant HR professionals need to succeed, valuable time and effort are wasted creating voids in the resume and cutting the continuity in the career progress.Lack of trust:
Lack of trust
As new HR professional immigrants do not have Canadian work references, which is a necessity for getting a job in Canada, employers do not trust their capacity in undertaking the required job. It is important for employers to accept that immigrant HR professionals built their professional references lists outside of Canada and that their level of professionality outside Canada indicates how professional they are in general terms including their skills, behavior, and character. Therefore, many employers assume that the quality of work of Canadian HR professionals is always better than quality of work of immigrant HR professionalsCommunications and cultural barriers
Communications and cultural barriers
In some cases, the lack of the official language proficiency (English / French) will cause a difficulty in communication within the formal and informal channels in a work environment and will create a barrier between HR professional and employers, colleagues and their professional community.
The anticipated communication barriers drive employers to hire immigrant HR professionals for wages less than their counterpart Canadian professionals and resist working on their existing organizational culture or workplace environment to deal with such barriers.
Most of the Canadian employers, managers and supervisors are not trained for utilizing multicultural/ diverse workforce through the immigrants’ numbers are increasing in Canada. Such employers tend to avoid hiring immigrant professions as the optimal solution to minimize /eliminate the risk of failing due to the utilization of a diverse workforce.
Originally posted 2016-03-15 20:13:45.