Business Forum | Immigration bureaucracy is pushing our business to the limit

While a historic labor shortage is taking place in Quebec, our governments are pulling back on immigration. In a report entitled State of equilibrium in the labor market, recently published by the Ministry of Labour, Employment and Social Solidarity, it is expected that, by 2025, more than 50% of the professions will be in short supply. This is the first time that the number of jobs lacking workers will exceed the number of jobs in equilibrium.

Posted at 4pm.

Anne-Marie Deslauriers
Founder, DELAN

Here, it becomes important to put things in perspective. If it looks like the situation will be more “critical” in 2025, it doesn’t take a PhD in economics (or a ministerial report) to realize that shortages are indeed afoot, right now, and that’s across all industries. Furthermore, whether in hospitality, healthcare or even information technology (IT), the sector I work in, this phenomenon dates back long before the pandemic. Fifty years after the most important baby boom in the history of Quebec, was, in my opinion, a predictable challenge.

Even so, I commend the relevance of the study, which provides a clearer and more quantified picture of the potential damages of this shortage to our economy. What I regret is the lack of action by the government in the face of this situation, which we have seen for several years. I wonder what governments are waiting for to find solutions to this problem that is weakening our economy and threatening our SMEs. The solutions are not just on your shoulders. But don’t the many sectors currently affected by this shortage justify concrete action now? Will we have to wait for our companies to disappear one by one, for lack of succession, to act?

In an open letter published last December, I wrote that one of the most effective short-term solutions is to increase immigration limits and make the process easier for companies looking to hire employees abroad. What has changed since that day? Anything.

Governments continue to pass on responsibility, fueling a sterile debate over their respective immigration powers. It’s not the right fight. At the moment, thousands of companies, and SMEs in particular, are struggling to recruit. In addition, the Ministry of Economy and Innovation recently released its plan to increase the number of companies in Quebec, under the pretext that this number is decreasing and that our province has the fewest businesses in the country. . I ask myself: how are we going to convince people to undertake, if there is no one to work in the companies and if there is already a lack of succession?

Being an entrepreneur, moreover, in the field of IT recruitment, I am at the forefront of seeing the effects of labor shortages on my business, my clients and job-seeking workers. . DELAN, the company I founded in 1997, is a growing SME specializing in recruitment and placement in the information technology industry, an important sector of activity in Quebec, representing more than 3% of the labor market and 5% of GDP.

Last April, DELAN asked the Ministry to hire a qualified recruiter from abroad. Almost two months later, we are still waiting for the file to be processed. It’s been seven weeks and we haven’t even received an acknowledgment of receipt. It is regrettable not to be able to carry out this contract, as the worker in question needs a job and DELAN needs an employee. This is just one example of the situations we have seen in recent years.

DELAN is not the only victim of bureaucracy and low immigration limits: several colleagues from the IT industry, but also entrepreneurs, have told me about their recruitment challenges. We must at all costs open immigration valves, simplify and speed up order processing, if we are to save our business.

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