British Columbia held its first Tech Pilot draw this month on November 3.
A total of 76 invitations to apply for a provincial nomination for permanent residence went out to Express Entry BC and Skills Immigration candidates.
Under these streams, the British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program (BC PNP) divided the invitations between the Skilled Worker and International Graduate categories.
A minimum provincial score of 80 was required of candidates in all categories.
The BC PNP Tech Pilot is a fast-track immigration pathway for in-demand IT workers and international students. It operates through B.C.’s existing provincial immigration streams.
In order to be considered for immigration to B.C. through this program, candidates need to have a valid job offer in one of 29 eligible occupations.
Eligible occupations for the BC PNP Tech Pilot include computer and information systems managers, civil engineers, web designers and developers, translators as well as audio and video recording technicians, among many others.
In contrast to other BC PNP streams that require an offer of permanent employment, Tech Pilot job offers must have a minimum duration of one year. However, offers of employment that are more than one year in duration will still be eligible under the pilot. It is also required that the job offer be full-time and from an eligible employer in the province.
Invitations through the province’s tech pilot are sent out weekly to the top-scoring candidates who meet the eligibility requirements.
Candidates who are invited to apply for a provincial nomination have 30 days to submit a complete application. Once this is done, most tech applications will be processed within two to three months.
Those who wish to apply under the Skills Immigration or Express Entry BC categories must first create a profile through the BC PNP’s online portal and register under its Skills Immigration Registration System (SIRS).
The SIRS is a point system that allows the BC PNP to give priority to candidates who have the required skills to contribute to the province’s economic growth. Applicants are evaluated and issued a score based on factors such as level of education, work experience, proficiency in English and location of employment.
Express Entry candidates who receive a nomination from British Columbia will be given an additional 600 points toward their Express Entry Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) score and are effectively guaranteed an Invitation To Apply (ITA) in a future federal draw.