The I choose Montréal team held its first-ever Express Recruiting event, a job fair specifically for international students in Greater Montréal.
More than 400 students came out to meet with representatives from 24 organizations, including Bell, C2 Montréal, Google, Future Earth and OVH.
“A record number of participants attended this professional networking activity organized by our team since the launch of I choose Montréal in October 2016, and it really exceeded our expectations,” stated Mathieu Lefort, Director – International Student at Montréal International. “As many international students who signed up also showed up to meet with employers. This shows how interested the students were in the Montréal job market and the relevance of such an initiative.”
The event was held in a simple and friendly format that allowed companies and students to establish initial contact, an often difficult step for many foreign students who have not yet built a network in their adopted home. This recruiting session gave them the opportunity to show off their know-how and personality, and to better understand the reality of the job market in Greater Montréal.
“An event like this allows us to identify potential employers, chat with them in a less formal setting and show our determination,” mentioned Adel Zeineddine, electrical engineering graduate from Concordia University. “I earned my first contract thanks to an I choose Montréal activity in April 2017, and I came back because I know this event could help me find a permanent job and get my residency.”
Available pool of talent
As labour is becoming scarce, more and more Greater Montréal companies are turning to international students. There are thousands of these students and they are prime candidates to support a company’s growth. “These students speak French, for the most part, and graduate from our schools with a recognized degree or diploma and are already quite familiar with the Québec culture. Helping them find a job is therefore crucial,” added Mr. Lefort.
“It’s the first, but certainly not the last time we will be participating,” said Maud Leveugle, recruiter at Planaxis, a firm specializing in IT. “Not only does this job fair allow us to set ourselves apart from competing employers in the industry, but we were also able to find candidates who perfectly match the profile we were looking for, i.e., young resourceful people who just graduated from school and eager to learn.”
Since February 2017, some sixty employers have taken part in one of the many activities organized by the I choose Montréal team with the aim of helping foreign students find an internship or job, or simply develop their professional network.
Assystem, CGI, Desjardins, IBM and Morgan Stanley are but only a few of the private companies that, much like a good number of economic development agencies, have chosen to associate themselves with the project and to take advantage of this incredible pool of talent.
“In open economies such as that of Greater Montréal and Québec, driven by knowledge and high-tech sectors, the availability of talent is a major issue and a decisive factor for foreign investors,” said Hubert Bolduc, President and CEO of Montréal International. “Global competition is stronger than ever and we must keep working together to welcome and retain even more international students and thereby provide companies with a fertile business environment filled with a richer talent pool.”
In fall 2017, Greater Montréal welcomed 10.3% more students from abroad. And thanks to the efforts by the I choose Montréal team, more of these students will soon by settling, living and working in Montréal.
The Express Recruiting event was such huge hit that the I choose Montréal team plans to repeat the event next fall.
Go to www.ichoosemontreal.com to learn more or contact Mathieu Lefort at firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to take part in one of our activities or post a job opening, internship or volunteer opportunity.