In January 2015, CIC launched a new electronic system called Express Entry to manage applications for permanent residence under the following existing immigration programs:
Individuals applying through the Express Entry who meet the criteria of one of these programs will be placed into a pool of candidates.
To be eligible to enter the pool, candidates must have skilled work experience in a National Occupational Code (NOC) O, A or B occupation. Candidates must also meet the minimum language requirements of one of the programs. In addition, if applying under the Federal Skilled Worker Program you must submit an Educational Credential Assessment, confirming that your credentials are equal to the standard s set for Canadian workers.
Candidates are awarded points for:
Candidates with the highest scores in the pool will be issued an Invitation to Apply (ITA). Rounds of invitations will be made from the Express Entry pool on a regular basis, with instructions posted on CIC’s website.
CIC states that most applicants who are invited to apply under the Express Entry system will see their electronic permanent residence applications processed within six months or less.
There is no limit to how many people may apply into the Express Entry pool. But there will be annual immigration quota setting out broad admission ranges for the immigration programs that are part of Express Entry.
There is no fee to submit an Express Entry profile. If you are invited to apply for permanent residence and submit an application you will have to pay the current application processing fee and a Right of Permanent Residence Fee if you are approved and decide to become a permanent residence.