So, I landed on Jan 27th night at Edmonton with my family. After having dinner at Amit’s home we came back to our house and I felt relaxed one hand that we all finally moved to Canada and on the other hand I was a bit tensed because I did not hear back anything about my interview with the MNC. Anyway, it was weekend and I thought that I’ll contact the HR on Mon.

Now the next thing was to buy some warm clothes for my family. We called a cab next morning and headed to a nearby mall where we bought warm jackets and also some woolen stuff for my dogs. My wife and daughter teamed up with Amit’s wife to do the grocery shopping and also to buy some necessary stuff such as vacuum cleaner, printer and toaster etc. We also bought some clothes during the weekend.

Somehow weekend passed and it was Monday morning. I wrote an email to HR asking for the feedback about the interview. I received a reply within an hour saying that they are in the process of short-listing the candidates and that they’ll get back in about a week’s time. 

My wife and I thought that why not get my daughter join some school and continue in the 9th grade until June. Though my daughter completed 9th grade in India and she had to repeat same grade for next few months, it was worth because she would get some experience about the academic atmosphere in Canada and also will make a few friends. So we started the process and within a week my daughter joined a school. I have summarized My daughter’s schooling experience in Canada in a separate page.

By this time, I had a couple of documents such as my rental agreement, my bank statement and my mobile bill as my address proof. So I thought, to keep myself busy, it was a good time to start my application process for the driving license. It is a lengthy process and I have summarized The process of getting Driver’s License in Canada in a separate page.

Those days, the temperature in Edmonton used to be between -15 to -25 deg C. I travelled to Calgary from Edmonton by bus for the interview. It was for the Sr. QA position. It was a short interview of about 20 min with only one interviewer i.e. hiring manager. Though the interview went

fine, neither the interviewer looked impressed nor she asked any positive questions such as how soon I can join etc. I was even surprised to know that the interviewer did not know that I was coming down from Edmonton, which is a 3 hours journey just for this interview. After my interview, Julie’s colleague gave me a call to check how the interview went. I did not feel good after the interview and conveyed the same to Julie’s colleague.

I reached Edmonton around 9:30 PM and while I was on my way back from the bus stop to my home, I had a brief discussion with the cab driver who was from India. After knowing my status, he suggested me not to wait any longer and get a survival job as soon as possible. According to him, this was the biggest mistake people like us do and get depressed soon because of the continuous leakage in their savings.

By this time, I had got the driving license and I used to drop & pick-up my daughter to school. Other than that, I used to help my wife in daily chores and also used to apply everywhere.

One more week passed by after I went for the interview to Calgary and to my luck, it was Thursday, I received a call from Juliethat the employer liked me and wants to go ahead with me. Julie asked me to wait for about a week because she was waiting to get the purchase order for my services from the employer. It was a contract for about a year whereas the contract was supposed to get renewed every three months. The hourly rate was good and that made me feel good as well.

After one week, I got a call from Julie and she told me that some new software implementation is going on in the employer’s company and that is delaying in releasing the PO. But she also assured me that my job is confirmed and it is just a matter of time. After this, about 5-6 weeks passed by but there was no confirmation of start date. So it was a mixed feeling those days i.e. on one hand there was at least some hope but on the other hand the delays were making things worse. I forgot to tell that it was my ex-company where I worked for two and a half years when I was in Bangalore.

Then one fine evening, I get a whatsapp message “Congratulations” from my friend and ex-colleague who is still with this company. I am completely clueless and then asked him “What for?”. He says “For job”. Then I give him a call back in India and asked about the details. He said that my name shows up as a contract employee in company’s database and it is listed under the person who took my interview. Now I could believe the story of PO getting delayed which my friend also confirmed. I had to wait for two more weeks before I received a call from Julie in April mid that she has received the PO and that my joining date would be coming Monday.

This was the moment I was waiting for in the last more than four months. I joined the company and moved my family to Calgary. It was the most satisfying experience so far after moving to Canada.

15 thoughts on “My first few months in Canada and how I got my first job

  1. Would be great to let us know how did you manage to get your license so soon. Since i understand there are multiple levels of licenses and initial license requires you to travel with additional person (apologies if you have already talked about this in your other page…still to go through).
    Also could you let us know how did you manage your accommodation? Coud you manage that from India? Also how did you get your PR card after your short stay (did Amit mail it to you?)

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    1. If you bring your home country’s license along-with driving extract (required in Ontario but not in Alberta) and submit it here, you don’t have to go through the first level. In second level, you’ll have to clear written test and then take some driving classes to clear driving test. Once you clear driving test, you get your Class 5 GDL (in Alberta) and G2 (in Ontario) which makes you eligible to drive your car without having someone experienced driver seated next to you. I did exactly the same.

      Regarding accommodation, I stayed at my friend’s house for about a month and through his contacts, I got an apartment. Whereas my friend who moved to Toronto, booked a room through Airbnb while he was in India and then in one month’s time, he finalized an apartment.

      Yes, my friend Amit sent me the PR card through registered post. However, I would not suggest that to anyone because it is risky.

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  2. Thanks Alok for investing so much time in responding to every query. Appreciate your help.

    One last thing, what do you mean by driving extract?

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    1. Driving extract is a document issued by RTO that provides details of your driving license and whether your driving history is clean without any accidents etc.

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  3. Hi Alok

    We are in India and would be relocating in a couple of months. My wife has been offered by her current employer in India to work on a contract basis out of Canada once we relocate.My question is a) does she have a register her company before she can take up any contract work b) if yes then can this be done while we are in India c) would you know the process around this whether India or Canada and d) can I tag on to the same company once she registers in case I also end up getting a contract job later and e) how much we may shell out in this process.

    Sorry for too many questions.

    Thanks
    Yeshwant

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    1. a) If it is for Canadian employer and if she would be getting paid in Canadian Dollars in her Canadian account then yes, she needs to have a company registered.

      b, c & e) The registration of company has to be done while you are in Canada. It’ll take just 10-15 min and the charges in Alberta are about $450 to get that done through registries

      d) Yes, both you and your wife can be partners in the same company. This is what I have also done

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  4. Hi Alok

    I have some set of questions and apologies to put it on this page; however, I was hoping if you could create a page just for FAQ’s then that would be a more suitable page for all to put in their questions which are out of context to a particular blog

    I am landing in Ontario early next month; hence these questions

    1) I have created an online account with Scotiabank and was trying to understand the best way to transfer funds from my India SBI account to Scotiabank even before I travel (understand wire transfer exists but is funds transfer via netbanking possible?). Would be interested in knowing how you managed this

    2) If I don’t do this transfer now; then can I still do it once I am in Canada (i have not created any NRE account so far)

    3) For the proof of funds, I will get a letter from my bank; but I am not sure if the immigration expects this letter to be in a particular format?

    4) If I load funds in a FOREX card for my travel. Would I be able to transfer the balance funds to my Canada bank account? Basically trying to understand the best way to carry funds

    4) My wife would be carrying some of her jewellery. Since these are quite old and hence she may not have the bills. Will the immigration require the bills and is there any limit to the value of the jewellery that is permissible to carry or follow later?

    5) I will start looking out for a job once I land. I have all the standard employment letters. In addition, would the employers ask for anything specific which may not be available by default (any reference letters, India salary statements, etc)?

    6) Is there any kind of insurance (that I need to enrol in prior) mandated during and post-travel?

    Apologies Alok for too many questions, but your help is highly appreciated.

    Thanks
    Yeshwant

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  5. Thanks Yeshwant for your suggestion about FAQ section. I’ll think over it.

    1) I don’t think you can use netbanking to transfer money from your Indian account to Canadian account. I visited the branch in person and did the wire transfer. If you transfer more than 20K CAD, the SBI gives you better rates.
    2) I tried to call SBI Bangalore from Canada and they said it’s not possible to get the funds transfer while me sitting in Canada. I did not have any local SBI branch in Calgary. In Ontario, you’ll have SBI branch and they might help you with that.
    3) No particular format is required. They need to see the bank stamp on the official letter or bank statement.
    4) As you are moving permanently and not doing short landing, it is better to carry demand draft and / or some cash after transferring the funds from your Indian account to Scotia account.
    4) I don’t think you need any bill and there should be no limit as well. But whatever you are carrying, have it listed in a piece of paper and tentative value. You should declare that while arrival. There is a particular form for that which you can get at the immigration counter. Whatever cash / jewelry you are carrying, you need to declare that upon arrival
    5) Keep all official and reference letters but no need to worry much. No one has asked me so far about those. Companies will do your background check through some private agencies and they’ll find out all the details.
    6) It is not mandatory but buy one. Carry Immigration insurance from ICICI Lombard or Reliance (one is valid for 2 months and another is for 3 months). Select the one with validity of 3 months as in Ontario, you’ll not have health coverage for first 3 months. This should cover your travel insurance as well.

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  6. Hello Alok,

    I went through your blog and found it very helpful, especially for people who are aspiring to migrate to Canada. I just have a query regarding my career, I am Technical Writer with 7 years of experience and I was wondering if you have any idea about this job role in the Canadian market. I am planning to apply for PR but I am not sure whether my job role is in demand there.

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    1. There are relatively quite less number of jobs as a tech writer than other technical areas. In a few cases, there are requirements to be bilingual (English & French). You’ll need to broaden your skill sets and then start searching for the jobs.

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  7. Hi Alok,

    I and my family landed in Calgary and have completed the required formalities. Now I and my son are back in India while my husband is searching for a job in his field. He has got a basic job that covers his expenses and has also answered the required exams to get his security license.

    I have some questions. I am BE graduate in field of IT and have 7 + years of experience in automation. Do i need to get my education evaluated to canadian terms? Do we need reference letter from the last employer stating my work profile?

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    1. You don’t need to get any education evaluation done. It is required if you want to do some course. However, a few employers may get your background checked before offering you the job. Reference letters are also not required. You may have to provide the reference emails while applying. As part of background check the employer will most probably communicate the people whom references you have given. In most of the cases, you’ll be asked to provide the references of your previous managers and they won’t accept the references of your colleagues

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