RBC Royal Bank to help skilled immigrants navigate the BC job market

IEC-BC  |  April 24, 2012

On Tuesday April 24th, the Immigrant Employment Council of BC (IEC-BC) will launch a mentoring program with RBC Royal Bank (RBC). Eight management-level RBC employees will dedicate 24 hours, over the next four-months, to help skilled immigrants find jobs in BC, commensurate with their skills and education. RBC has partnered with IEC-BC and three local immigrant serving agencies to offer RBC staff a unique professional development opportunity that benefits their organization while helping skilled immigrants integrate into BC's labour market.

Participating mentors hold key positions in RBC, including VP, Enterprise Collaboration, Market Operations Manager, Capacity Optimization Manager and Manager of Western Canada Recruitment. The mentees, who have held prominent positions in their countries of origin, are having difficultly finding appropriate employment in BC, despite their strong credentials and years of experience.

Employers across the province are finding it increasingly difficult to find skilled workers to fill vacancies created by a retiring workforce and an expanding economy. Meanwhile, skilled immigrants struggle to find appropriate employment, despite a skills and labour shortage in the province. Employers that hire skilled immigrants in BC benefit from their talent, connections to global markets and international experience.

IEC-BC's mentoring program is part of a growing suite of employer-facing resources, designed as a cost effective bridge between skilled immigrants looking for work in BC and employers that need their skills. Through this program, mentors increase their global contacts and enhance leadership skills, while giving their mentees insight into the Canadian context of their professions and access to local networks.

Kelly Pollack, Executive Director, Immigrant Employment Council of BC

"Skilled immigrants represent a significant source of talent for BC, and mentoring has proven to be an effective tool for connecting employers with this unique talent pool. One of the biggest challenges for BC's economic future is ensuring labour supply meets labour demand, and employer-facing supports like IEC-BC's mentoring program are vital to the long-term economic growth of the province.

Suzanne Rutherford, Vice-President, Enterprise Collaboration, RBC

“While Canada has done a good job of attracting skilled immigrants, integrating this talent effectively into the job market has proven to be more of a challenge. RBC is committed to being part of the solution through building awareness and innovative employment programs, which aim to match immigrants to meaningful job opportunities based on their skills and education.”


Roley Chiu
Communications Manager
Immigrant Employment Council of BC


Twitter: @IEC_BC



Quick Facts

As of 2011, immigration accounts for 100 per cent of net labour force growth in BC.
Immigrants make up 27.3 per cent of the provincial labour force. (WelcomeBC)
According to the Canadian Federation of Independent Businesses (CFIB), more than half of members surveyed said they could not find the people they need to bring their products and services to market.
74 per cent of small businesses across Canada believe it's becoming harder to find employees that have the skills they require (AMEX small business monitor).
Immigrants are more likely to have a post-secondary education than Canadian-born workers.(StatCan)
BC accepts over 40,000 immigrants per year.

About IEC-BC

The Immigrant Employment Council of BC (IEC-BC) helps BC businesses gain a competitive edge by connecting employers with immigrant talent. IEC-BC collaborates with local government, employers, service providers and community organizations to develop and implement effective solutions that help employers find talent and ultimately strengthen BC's economy.

The Immigrant Employment Council of BC is hosted by the Vancouver Foundation and is funded in whole or part through the Canada-British Columbia Labour Market Development Agreement. www.tapintotalent.ca

About IEC-BC's Mentoring Program

IEC-BC's Mentoring Program uses the power of connections to mobilize immigrant talent, build sustainable communities and grow BC’s economy. Built on a successful national model, the Program connects employers with ‘job ready’ immigrant talent. It brings together skilled immigrants and established Canadian professionals in occupation-specific, one-on-one relationships. Skilled immigrants entering the program have the education, experience, and language skills to succeed in the Canadian labour market. However, they may not understand the Canadian context of their profession or the nature of the local job market. What they need to succeed are the local insights and access to professional networks that a one-on-one connection with a local mentor can offer. The program is delivered in collaboration with employers and local service providers. IECBC has developed mentoring programs with the City of Vancouver and several federal government departments including Canada Heritage, Canada Revenue Agency (CRA), Western Economic Diversification Canada (WD), Passport Canada, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) and Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA).

About RBC

Royal Bank of Canada (RY on TSX and NYSE) and its subsidiaries operate under the master brand name RBC. We are Canada’s largest bank as measured by assets and market capitalization, and are among the largest banks in the world, based on market capitalization. We are one of North America’s leading diversified financial services companies, and provide personal and commercial banking, wealth management services, insurance, corporate and investment banking and transaction processing services on a global basis. We employ approximately 74,000 full- and part-time employees who serve close to 16 million personal, business, public sector and institutional clients through offices in Canada, the U.S. and 51 other countries. For more information, please visit rbc.com.