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Hire Immigrants Ottawa: Empowering employers like Shopify


The Ottawa region attracts the most highly skilled and educated immigrants in Canada, receiving about 3,100 immigrants with a post-secondary education each year. Yet, immigrants are frequently paid less than Canadian-born workers, and have higher rates of unemployment.

Hire Immigrants Ottawa (HIO), a United Way Ottawa community-wide initiative, is working to change this so the workforce can keep up with the diversity of Ottawa’s population. HIO brings together employers, immigrant agencies and other stakeholders to make sure employers have the capacity to access the talents of skilled immigrants, and that immigrants can find employment that matches their training and expertise.

Shopify is an example of a workplace that has benefited from working with HIO.

Shopify took home an Employer Excellence Award at Hire Immigrants Ottawa’s 2018 Employer Council of Champions Summit

For Shopify, it was an opportunity to really partner [with HIO] and understand the nuances and the different approaches we may want to take in engaging the newcomer community to make sure that both parties were successful.

By collaborating with HIO on its Android Bootcamp program that focused directly on supporting newcomers to Canada, Shopify learned how to bridge the gap with talent and provide relevant education and resources.

Shopify’s talent acquisition team has also taken a number of proactive measures to build a diverse and inclusive workplace, including participating in HIO’s cross-cultural competency training. In working with HIO, Shopify is able to hire the best talent and leverage their diverse thoughts and perspectives to make a strong team.

This opens doors in Canada for people like Dario Mungoi, a senior software developer from Mozambique:

With nearly 80 per cent of Ottawa’s population growth coming from newcomers, it’s important to recognize and engage the skills and education of newcomers in order for our city to flourish. Since its inception, HIO has helped employers hire 2,255 skilled immigrants, and has delivered cross-cultural workshops to over 1,894 participants.

Learn more about Hire Immigrants Ottawa.




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