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  • Suzette Tiempo

How to Integrate and Retain Internationally Trained Workers

Every year, Canadian employers welcome international talent from around the world. Creating an inclusive workplace, making your foreign workers feel at ease and taking care of their professional needs can go a long way in retaining foreign employees and increasing their productivity.

Hiring and retaining internationally trained workers can assist employers in meeting their labour needs along with helping them access international markets and increase the competitiveness of their organization globally.

Let's look at how you can make your organization a safe space to work in for ITWs.

Integrating and Retaining Internationally Trained Workers

As you bring in foreign employees, it can be beneficial for you to provide them with training and mentoring support to assist in their career development.

Providing training and mentoring can help greatly in increasing your employees' productivity and improving their hard and soft skills. This can also ensure that you retain your foreign employee by assisting them in maintaining or getting their licensure.


Employers can provide their ITWs with training courses or one-on-one training sessions in the workplace. The training can be provided in any area, including technical, language, academic, or other essential skills. For instance, you can provide your employee with a training course that teaches them how to work and communicate with others effectively, helping them hone their soft skills.


Apart from training, mentoring is a great way to integrate and retain foreign employees. Mentorship answers the questions your foreign workers may have about the workplace. It also helps in the career development of the workers beyond their current work and increases their awareness of the Canadian company culture.

Career Development Opportunities

Providing career development programs is essential for all employees of an organization. As an employer, you should include your international workers in leadership development programs and other coaching resources that can help them fine-tune their skills. Employers should also actively support employees seeking licensing or certification by providing paid time off to prepare for important exams or providing financial support. It is also imperative to give foreign workers leadership positions as they can bring a unique perspective and skillset to the role.

Creating a Welcoming Work Environment

The best way to integrate and retain foreign employees is by making them feel a part of the organization.

As an employer, you should aim to:

  • Create a welcoming climate around the workplace

  • Provide formal orientation to make the workers feel valued and appreciated

  • Connect newly arrived foreign workers with relevant community sources to help make a move easier for them and their families.

  • Provide diversity training to your existing staff

  • Celebrate the cultural diversity of your organization

  • Include ITWs in the decision-making and development process of your products and services

The Bottom Line

Foreign workers can be a valuable resource for any Canadian business. Their unique perspectives, coupled with their ability to bring something new to the table, can be an excellent incentive for employers to retain their ITWs. It is important to remember that an inclusive workplace benefits everyone involved and creates meaningful work.



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