We're always seeking skilled people for jobs in BC.

The Foreign Skilled Workers BC program (FSWBC) was created in early 2012 as a response to the growing need for skilled and experienced tradespeople for construction projects around British Columbia. Large numbers of experienced tradespeople and managers exiting the workforce due to retirement – combined with a large number of current and upcoming projects and ongoing investment into infrastructure – have led to major shortages of experienced, specialized workers in a number of trades and locations.

Our focus is on hiring and training British Columbians and Canadians for BC jobs first, and supporting BC employers by connecting international workers for the specialized skilled work which employers have been unable to fill with local workers.

FSWBC was created as a service to British Columbia Construction Association members, many of whom are already experiencing project delays due to a lack of specialized workers. These employers need people today with the experience and specialized certifications to ensure the projects are completed on time, to expected standard, and with the heightened level of safety that extensive on-the-job experience offers. FSWBC's goal is to provide an avenue for these BC employers to access the skilled, experienced workers which the employers have not been able to find locally throughout the usual job posting and hiring process. Foreign workers may ONLY be hired if the Canadian employer has been unable to find someone with the certifications, skills and experience in their area to match a position which they have publicly advertised. In many cases, those employers have been searching for five months or more (18+ months has been reported). The employer is required to show proof of their extensive search during the immigration application process. In addition, BC apprentices can only complete their apprenticeships to become journeypersons if there are the skilled, experienced journeypersons to train them. This is a vital element in the trades training system, and all parts must be in place for the system/cycle to continue – bringing in experienced tradespersons provides that support.

What does FSWBC do?
Our FSWBC team continually screens candidate CVs/résumés, compiling information to build a comprehensive database of skilled workers as a resource when an employer requests a specific type of worker – then, FSWBC connects (and acts as intermediary between) employers and potential employees, as well as coaching members and new hires in the preparation of paperwork required to bring skilled workers into BC. Members of the BC Construction Association and other employers who wish to participate in the program are required to pay a fee for service for each skilled journeyperson placed with their organization via the FSWBC program. No fee is charged to the incoming worker. 

Where are the jobs?
Employers from all over the province continue to seek experienced, specialized workers, though the majority of new investment is in the North, which boasts more than 65% of the investment and work, but only a very small percentage of the workforce.

Do you accept CVs/résumés from all over the world?
Absolutely. While many of our events have been focused on Ireland due to an easy match between training/certification systems and language, we accept CVs from individuals in all countries. 


Email: FSWBC@bccassn.com
Call: (250) 475-1077

Abigail Fulton is the principal spokesperson for the program, which is operated out of the British Columbia Construction Association offices. As part of this initiative, the BCCA is continually compiling information for employers and foreign tradespeople, attending job fairs abroad, screening candidate CVs/résumés, acting as intermediary between employers and potential employees, and coaching members in the preparation of paperwork required to bring skilled workers into BC.