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Are you applying for Canada PR under the Express Entry Program or the Atlantic Immigration Pilot Program or any of the other Provincial Nominee Program (PNP)? If yes, then you may require to submit proof of your current or previous work experience.

The candidate must submit a letter to Immigration, Refugee, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) when the candidate is applying for Canada PR. The applicant must give a letter from the organization with all the specific information.

This letter is called an Employment Reference Letter. The blog provides an overview of how IRCC expects the letter to be and what one can do if their organization is not ready to give this letter.

Points to be included in your Employment Reference Letter

While applying for Canada PR, IRCC expects the letter to be in a proper format which includes the following points –

  • The letter should be printed on the organization’s letterhead and should consist of the organization’s contact information.
  • The contact information should include the organization’s email address, phone number, and complete address.
  • The letter should mention the candidate’s supervisor’s details, including its name, designation, and signature. If the supervisor is not available, the Human Resource manager of the organization can do the needful.
  • It is mandatory to mention the candidate’s name, the title of the job, list of duties, the start date of the job and the end date of the job (if applicable), total working hours per week, salary, and added benefits received every year from the organization.
  • According to the guidelines of IRCC, having the organization’s stamp is not essential.
  • The crucial part of the Employment Reference Letter is to mention the exact duties and responsibilities.
Employment reference letter

Receiving the Employment Reference Letter from the Organization

Being open-minded, IRCC considers specific scenarios.

If the candidate fails to provide the Employment Reference Letter as per the mentioned guidelines of IRCC, it does not mean that the candidate’s application will not be considered.

The candidate has to provide other necessary relevant documents and a Letter of Explanation (LoE), which specifies that the candidate could not give the Employment Reference Letter as per the requirement of IRCC. By doing this, the candidate’s application could be considered.

If the Human Resource manager refuses to give the Employment Reference Letter, the candidate can have a word with the reporting Manager.

Remember to keep proof by sending an email to the human resource manager. Suppose they refuse to give the Employment Reference Letter. In that case, the candidate will have proof of email, which he can add to the supporting documents mentioning it as proof of the company refusing to give the required Employment Reference Letter.

If this does not work, the candidate can ask his or her reporting manager to sign the Employment Reference Letter on behalf of your organization and even without using the organization’s letterhead.

Make sure you include all the necessary information in this letter. The candidate has to add a copy of the company card and have their signature notarized.

After the manager signs the Employment Reference Letter, the candidate should add copies of relevant documents, including a job contract, offer letter, payslips, salary certificate, promotion letters, and so on.

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How to use NOC to Draft the Employment Reference Letter?

It is essential to find the NOC (National Occupational Classification) code. Each NOC code mentions the list of responsibilities and duties. The candidate must search for the right NOC code, which matches their actual job duties and responsibilities.

It is one of the most critical parts of your immigration process. If you face any difficulty finding the right NOC code for your occupation, please consult a licensed Canadian immigration consultant. The candidate has to complete the majority of the job duties mentioned in the NOC code.

  • The candidate must write his duties by taking inspiration from the NOC code description.
  • One should not use the same order of the employment responsibilities and the same number of employment duties, as mentioned in the NOC code description.
  • It is advised that one should add two to three more tasks, which are not mentioned in the NOC code description.

Make sure you are not copying the NOC code page’s duties and paste them into your Employment Reference Letter.

IRCC will get to know the reliability and genuineness of your letter. Depending on the same, further investigation might consume time and extend the application process time and may end in rejecting the reference letter.

We have provided below a sample Employment Reference Letter to make the process easier for you:

Sample Employment Reference Letter

(Either organization’s letterhead mentioning organization’s email address, exact location address, and contact number OR name of the Manager and contact information which includes Manager’s Name, designation, organization’s email address, location address, contact number)



To whomsoever, it may concern,

I, (Manager’s Name), hereby certify, as the direct Manager of (Your Name), that (he/she) has been recruited by (Organisation’s Name) since (Date of recruitment) as an (Employment title), and works (full-time or part-time) for (number of work hours per week), and is still working at (Organisation’s Name) under my supervision (if mentioning about the previous employment, make use of the past tense and insert the last date of the job). (Candidate’s Name) annual income is (mention the salary in local currency) and receives benefits, which include (mention the benefits received).

The responsibilities and duties of (Candidate’s Name) as an (Employment title) are as mentioned below:

  1. (Duty/Responsibility)
  2. (Duty/Responsibility)
  3. (Duty/Responsibility)
  4. (Duty/Responsibility)
  5. (Duty/Responsibility)

(In case the Manager does not mention some IRCC required information, you can, for example, add « Not having the necessary authority, I cannot attest to the salary of (Candidate’s Name), nor use the letterhead of (Organisation’s Name) for this letter

Hoping to meet your expectations,

{Manager Title}
Manager Name

Since the Employment Reference Letters are an essential part of ascertaining the right NOC code for your occupation and hence the basis of your Canadian immigration process, it is pertinent to consult a licensed Canadian immigration consultant if you want to do it right the first time around without any negative impact on your application.

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