Canada lacks skilled workers and there are numerous immigration programs to welcome these employees to the country. Software engineers are among the most in-demand job positions by the government, entrepreneurs, and companies.

This article is a full guide to immigrating to Canada as a software engineer.

Table of Contents

What immigration methods a software engineer can move to Canada?

First, you need to know that software engineers in Canada are hugely in demand, and employers are always looking for them. Entrepreneurs and startup owners try to hire them and bring them to the country.

The Federal government is aware of this fact, so they have added the software engineer to the NOC list. It is the National Occupation Code List. The jobs on this list are qualified to apply and move to Canada as skilled workers.

The main NOC job groups are:

  • Skill Type 0 (zero)
  • Skill Level A
  • Skill Level B
  • Skill Level C
  • Skill Level D

What is the NOC code for software engineers?

Before you know the NOC code, you would better know about the express entry program.

It is one of the many Canadian immigration programs that enable the skilled workforce to move to the country permanently and get a Permanent residency or PR directly. The program works on a ranking score and is highly competitive. It invites candidates with the highest scores to apply for PR.

Express Entry has three subcategories that applicants apply through one of them:

Canadian Experience Class (CEC)

The eligibility principle for CEC is:

Language proficiency

  • TEF Canada
  • TCF Canada

Education requirements 

There are no education requirements for CEC, but you can increase your score with it. In case you have studied abroad, you need to show that your certificate is equal to a completed certificate, diploma, or degree from a Canadian school, university, or college.

Have one year of work experience

Being admissible to enter Canada.

Federal Skilled Worker Program

The requirements for a Federal skilled worker program are as follows;

  • Have a job offer from a Canadian employer
  • Have enough funds to cover your expenses
  • Have work experience
  • Be eligible to work in Canada
  • Age
  • English/French language proficiency

Federal Skilled Trades Program

The requirements for FSTP are as follows;

  • Have two years of full-time work experience
  • Have related work experience
  • Have a job offer from a Canadian employer
  • Proof to have enough funds to cover your expenses

The NOC code for software engineers is 2173 is the express entry program.

So, software engineers have a great opportunity to move to Canada. An international student has to live and work for one year after graduation to be eligible for Express Entry.

However, a software engineer can apply directly for the PR as save lots of time and money.

Job Titles to Immigrate to Canada as a Software Engineer.

The Atlantic Immigration Pilot program

There are four Atlantic provinces in Canada and they may attract the skilled workforce they need through the Atlantic Immigration Pilot program. The four provinces are as follows:

  • New Newfoundland and Labrador
  • New Brunswick
  • Nova Scotia
  • Prince Edward Island

There is no point-based system with the AIP program, but applicants need to have a job offer from an employer in one of these provinces. Of course, there are other requirements as well.

Temporary Foreign Worker Program

International skilled workers can also move to Canada through the Temporary Foreign Worker Program and of course, software engineers.

Applicants need to get a job offer from a Canadian employer. Then the applicant must receive a certificate called LMIA (Labor Market Impact Assessment). You may not move to Canada without getting the LMIA, and it is the employer’s responsibility to apply for it.

LMIA costs the employer a few thousand dollars and requires going through the red tape.

So it is a bit complicated and difficult, so employers rather not choose this immigration option. It is a bit risky, costly, and might take a lot of time.

Infographic immigration software engineer can move to Canada

What is Canada software engineer visa sponsorship?

Sponsorship means that an employer is willing to apply for a work permit who lives abroad.

You need sponsorship in the Temporary Foreign Worker Program. The employer needs to apply for an LMIA certificate, pay the fees and go through the application process.

When the LMIA is issued, the applicant can apply for a work visa and move to Canada.

When you look for a job or negotiate over the terms, determine if the employer is willing to apply for sponsorship or not.

Also, some employers might mention in the job vacancy that the employee should have a work permit and they do not go through the sponsorship procedures.

What is the CRC calculator system?

IRCC or Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada website have a free tool to evaluate candidates. The factors they consider for applicants are as follows:

Work experience

  • French ability
  • Language skills
  • Qualifications
  • Age
  • Enough funds
  • Married or single
  • Having a Canadian degree

When you fill in the forms by your conditions, the system will tell you your score. You know how possible is it to get accepted into the pool of express entry.

In case your score is low, you can work on your conditions to get a better score and improve your chance. Express entry works like a lottery, but the chance is higher for applicants with better scores.

Also, you can work on your conditions to improve the scores and get a higher possibility.

Can you move to Canada as a software engineer without a job offer?

The answer is yes. You may move to Canada as a software engineer without having a job offer from a Canadian employer. However, you need to apply through the express entry program and have a high CRS score.

Having a job offer will increase your score in the CRS to a great extent, and you are likely to get accepted. But not having one will not cause a problem, and you can work on other factors.

What job titles can you work in Canada as a software engineer?

Software engineers do thousands of tasks if not millions, in today’s job market. If you are searching for the future job market and want to know how it will be in the future, know that they are one of the pillars of our future.

Software engineers perform lots of tasks in various positions, but some of the things they do are like:

  • Evaluating people or users’ requirements
  • Testing and designing new software for computer systems
  • Develop and upgrade working and maintenance procedures of systems and apps.
  • Guide and manage teams of professionals in AI and software.

When you move to Canada as a software engineer, you may work in the following job opportunities:

  • software designer
  • software systems designer
  • software design verification engineer
  • Full stack developer
  • software design supervisor
  • software design engineer
  • software architect
  • simulation software design engineer
  • computer telecommunications software specialist
  • computer applications engineer
  • cloud engineer
  • cloud architect
  • artificial intelligence (AI) designer
  • telecommunications software engineer
  • systems architect
  • systems applications engineer
  • software testing engineer
  • software technical architect
  • Data analyst
  • software systems integration engineer
  • Data scientist

Software Engineers salary and income in Canada 2022

Your income as a software engineer who has immigrated to Canada is up to different factors:

  • Education
  • Work experience
  • Skills
  • The company that hires you
  • The province you stay in
  • Work experience in Canada
  • Negotiation skills
  • Language proficiency
  • The project you have completed.

According to indeed, which is a website to find jobs almost anywhere globally, the average income of a Software Engineer in Canada is $83,320per year.

However, according to the payscale website, the average base salary of a software engineer in Canada is C$78,555.

This is the list of perks, bonuses, and other options.

Base SalaryC$57k – C$104k
BonusC$2k – C$12k
Profit SharingC$805 – C$15k
Total PayC$54k – C$111k

The above table can help you make better decisions if you want to move to Canada as a software engineer.

In case you are wondering about the popular skills of a software engineer in Canada, look at the below table:

C# Programming LanguageC$74,056

The Indeed website has provided a list of incomes for some famous companies in Canada

  • Amazon $135.854
  • NASDAQ, $128,315
  • S&P Global, $124, 510
  • Electronic Arts $117,883
  • Animal logic, $115,711

The average income of a software engineer in some of the Canadian cities are as follows:

  • Vancouver, BC 94, 834
  • Ottawa, ON 93, 523
  • Toronto, ON 92,901
  • Montreal, QC 83,403
  • Mississauga, ON 81,983
  • Calgary AB 81, 188
  • Edmonton, AB 76, 876
  • Burnaby, 76, 288

The following job titles are also some of the in-demand job titles in Canada that are related to the software engineer field. Their salary is also impressive and you might be interested in them;

Full Stack Developer$86, 462
Application Developer,$71,830
Front End Developer,$84,391
Back End Developer,$87,304
Web Developer,$70,988

Best provinces in Canada for software engineer

The best Canadian provinces you can find a software engineer jobs are as follows, and you can find the cost as well.

The cost of living in Canada is up to the city you live in and your lifestyle. It depends on various elements. However, you can see how much cost in average living in the following Canadian cities:


The above cost does not include rent and is for a single person.

What skills improve a software engineer in Canada?

Today’s world insists on having one or two other skills besides the main one you have today. This is what I learned deep down from the book named Range by David Epstein.

The same is true with the software engineers who move to Canada and will be working in startups and great companies. Having critical thinking and problems solving skills are two of the requirements that if you have in your arsenal, you will perform better at your job.

The followings are some of the skills that could affect your future career as a software engineer in a good way;

  • Telecommunications
  • Google Cloud Platform (GCP)
  • Artificial Intelligence (AI)
  • iOS
  • Go (Golang) Programming Language
  • Continuous Integration (CI)
  • Apache Kafka
  • Kotlin Programming Language
  • Red Hat Enterprise Linux (RHEL)
  • Swift Programming Language

What is the language requirements to move to Canada as a software engineer?

The two common languages in Canada are English and French. The late one is more common and spoken in the French part of the country, Quebec.

If you want to move to Canada as a software engineer, practicing and learning English is a good investment. You will have better and more options. Also, you would better work from now and take language proficiency tests such as IELTS and TOFEL.

If you are considering Duolingo, you would better know that it was a test for the Covid-19 pandemic. The international students and university applicants were able to take the tests from home and get the results ASAP.

However, at the moment, universities are reconsidering and removing Duolingo as an approved test. You would better pick IELTS or TOEFL as they have scored in the express entry too.

Also, if you have the time and interest, you can work on your French-speaking ability and develop it. You might not want to work in French-speaking parts but in the world of remote working, you may get a project from this area. Don’t you want to miss it because you can not say “bonjour, cava, comment va tout”?

The last point to remember is that you need more than to introduce yourself to Canadian employers. So you have to work on your listening-speaking skills and improve them day by day.

These two skills will slow down if you do not practice daily, and you will not be able to speak when it’s time. Also, you have no idea when the meeting with the employer is about to be. So start from today, this moment, and work on your language proficiency skills.

Is IELTS a requirement to immigrate to Canada as a software engineer?

The answer depends on different elements. First, you need a language proficiency test result to immigrate to Canada. IELTS is the approved test by IRCC for the Express Entry program. If you intend to apply through it, you are likely to need an IELTS test result.

What if you want to immigrate to Canada and study at a university with developing majors. Well, in this case, your options become a bit wider. You can take TOEFL, PTE, and Duolingo tests.

You would better visit the university’s website and find out what test is approved and the approved score.

With so many available resources to study and practice, there can not be much concern about IELTS.

The point is, if you take the IELTS and get a good score, your immigration options as a software engineer become wider. You will have less trouble.

What qualifications do you need to work as a software engineer in Canada?

Your education is considered eligible if you have a degree in one of the following items to work as a software engineer in Canada:

  • computer science,
  • computer systems engineering,
  • software engineering
  • mathematics

In case you have completed a course in college, your educational certificate is qualified you to work in Canada.

Are there any specific requirements for software engineers moving to Canada?

No. there is no particular requirement for software engineers to immigrate to Canada. In case the applicant has studied abroad, he/she needs a Canadian equivalency assessment.

The government tries to attract as many software engineers as possible. So they have eased the conditions and paved the way.

You just need to apply through an appropriate immigration program and meet the requirements.

Can you use the High Potential Tech Visa to move to Canada as a software engineer?

What the heck is this program that you have never heard about? Well, it’s a new Canadian immigration program. It works like a German job seeker visa and allows highly skilled foreign workers such as software engineers, data scientists, and developers to move to Canada and look for a job.

Skilled workers can move to Canada without having a job offer and they do not have to wait in the long tedious process of the express entry program.

The government wants to ease the immigration of skilled workers, particularly software engineers, so they introduced the High Potential Tech visa.

Canadian companies will be able to pick the best engineers and developers that are inside the country. A face-to-face meeting and evaluation will provide a better option for recruiting the right employee for the tasks and projects.

Further information about the High Potential Tech Visa will be announced but for now, you can work on your skills and language proficiency.

Where can you get a job opportune as a software engineer in Canada?

Software engineering is a highly demanding job in Canada, and you might find a job opportunity everywhere. But it is more common in large and most important cities. These are the cities that Canadian startups are located, and they desire to attract software engineers.

Also, you have the option to work remotely from anywhere in the country and get freelance projects if you have a profound resume.

  • Toronto
  • Montreal
  • Calgary
  • Ottawa
  • Edmonton
  • Winnipeg
  • Mississauga
  • Vancouver
  • Brampton
  • Hamilton

Before you decide which city to move to, you would better do research and find a job position. There are various websites you can use to find a job opportunity related to your work experience.

Websites to find software engineer job opportunities in Canada

The following websites are some of the ones where you can look for a job as a software engineer who wants to immigrate to Canada.

They are fun to find jobs in different positions and categories.

But the point to remember is that companies and startups prefer referrals and word of mouth higher. It means that they ask friends and co-workers if they know a software engineer or not. People recommend a skilled and well-qualified worker. It has proved that the system works and people find a job sooner and easier.

However, do not get disappointed and apply for the positions. There is a first time for everything and you need to start from a place.

  • Monster.ca
  • Ziprecruiter.ca
  • Eluta.ca
  • Jobbank.gc.ca
  • Careerbuilder.ca
  • Ca.indeed.com
  • Hotjobscanada.ca
  • Simplyhired.ca
  • Jobs.ca
  • Indeed.com

What are the benefits of moving to Canada as a software engineer?

When it comes to immigration and improving your conditions, the first option that comes into mind is Canada. With one of the highest living standards with safety, advanced tech and innovation, and so many job opportunities, there is nothing left to stay.

The followings are some of the benefits of immigrating to Canada as a software engineer:

A liberal country 

Canada is one of the most liberal countries where people have the right to live and work for different parts of the world in peace.

A high population of immigrants 

More than 21% of the country’s population is made of immigrants. Canada is welcoming 400.000 immigrants everywhere from various countries in the world. So the cultural diversity is great, and there is less racism and cultural shock.

Robust economy 

The economy is developing really fast, and the startups are leading it. There is so much revenue and income from the startups and entrepreneur companies that the government is constantly attracting skilled workers.

Every year, the officials introduce a new immigration program or ease the rules of the previous pens to attract skilled employees around the globe.

Reasonably priced application 

The many ways of Canada’s immigration plans are reasonable compared to other countries. There is a high chance that you get accepted by them.

For instance, if you get a high score in the express entry, you have a high chance of getting accepted and applying for PR compared with the US green card that is based on pure lock.

 Family can immigrate 

The family of the applicant may move to the country if they meet the requirements. For instance, the super visa allows the parents or grandparents of the sponsor living in Canada to stay in the country for two years.

The officials have understood the importance of family for the workforce, so they have paved the way for family joining as well.

Various immigration programs 

There are over 70 immigration programs for people from all around the world. You can find an appropriate immigration way to move to the country.

This is something you can not find in every country.

High standard education system 

Canada is the third-best country in terms of education globally. The authorities have understood that a well-educated nation can build the country’s economy and provide revenue.

Also, they have a good income from attracting international students who pay tuition or receive funds and are the best of the best.

The government has created plans to keep the international students in the country, so they promote the country.

Free healthcare for citizens and PR holders 

You will get free access to the healthcare system as soon as you become PR citizens. In the express entry, you become PR citizens directly. Also, you may apply for a PR after one year of working in the country after graduation.

Citizenship after three years 

After living in Canada for three years under the PR, you may apply for citizenship. It is the least citizenship duration of stay requirement in the world.

The door to public office and high-security jobs will be open for you after citizenship.

Benefits of immigrating to Canada as a python developer

In general, developers earn a good salary in Canada. S it is with the Python developers. They have highly required in

  • Data science
  • Back end
  • AI
  • Big data
  • Website development

The above areas are highly in demand in Canada.

You can excerpt to earn $50.000 to $80.000 as a python developer in Canada.

Canadian employers are fine with remote working, and you can save a lot of time working from home. Also, there are a lot of training programs and courses you can take to develop your skills.

The one benefit is that Canada has a startup atmosphere. There are various startups in different fields that require developers. It’s a brilliant opportunity to develop your skills and get work experience. A startup is a place you can challenge yourself and learn as much as you can.

Problem-solving skill is one of the skills you can get in these small companies. Job opportunities are mainly by referrals. Friends and co-workers introduce the people they know to others. You can create a great community in Canada and expect referrals from them for a better job opportunity.

Benefits of immigrating to Canada as a front-end developer

Having a well-designed website with effective UX and UI is essential for a company or business. Front-end developers are in demand to develop websites and solve the problem. So it’s a highly required job position with a great salary. You can expect to earn $49,336 and $66,120 a year as a front-end developer.

Vancouver and Toronto are the two most expensive cities in Canada. But your earnings are almost enough to live in these two cities. In fact, Vancouver and Toronto are the cities that require a developer more than others.

If you are ambitious and want to work in huge companies, Canada can be a springboard to Silicon Valley and US companies.

Benefits of immigrating to Canada as a back-end developer

No matter what area you work in. Just have a developer in your job title and hold the required work experience. Then Canada welcomes you, and the companies and startups are waiting for you.

At the moment, back-end developers are in demand more than other ones, and you can expect a higher salary.

You can expect to work with a Canadian company or startup in the long term. Job security? Well, you won’t have any worries as the rules are in your favor. If you do not like this company, a better job is available most of the time or after short research.

However, the job market is highly competitive, and you have to compete with the best of the best.

Immigrating to Canada as a developer is available through Express Entry, and you can directly receive PR. It is the best benefit you can get.

Benefits of immigrating to Canada as an ASP.net developer

This category of developers also comes under the Express Entry system that you can apply through. It leads to permanent Residency, which has the below benefits:

  • Get social benefits like a Canadian citizen
  • Canadian citizenship after a short period of time
  • Free health coverage
  • Allow you to bring your family
  • Free education for children
  • Ability to work anywhere in Canada

The multicultural and diverse community allows you to get familiar with various types of people. You do not feel homesickness a lot, and the cultural sock is less likely.

Also, Canada is a great palace to get work experience as the culture is a lifetime learner.

As the job position is in demand, you can work in every city and even remotely with good earnings.

Let’s sum up…

Canada lacks software engineers and skilled workers, so they have various immigration programs to attract them to the country.

This article explained how software engineers could immigrate to Canada, the immigration programs available for them, salary, cost of living, etc.

In case you have questions regarding moving to Canada as a software engineer or any occupation, write your questions in the comment section. The Visa Library team will respond right away.

Frequently Asked Questions about moving to Canada as a software engineer?

Do I need an IELTS test result to immigrate to Canada as a software engineer?

It’s up to the immigration program you choose and the province you wish to move to.

Do I get a well-paid salary as an immigrated software engineer in Canada?

The amount you will get is up to your skills, experience, work experience, and other factors.

Is it easy to find a job as a software engineer in Canada?

It is one of the most in-demand job positions and is growing every day.

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