Federal skilled worker Program (FSWP)


In 1967, the Canadian government launched the Federal skilled worker Program (FSWP). This program was created to eradicate the previous means of immigration based on the immigration officer’s judgement. With the new approach, immigrants can come into Canada based on objective criteria, which are: education, age, work experience, language skills and many others.

The benefits of the FSWP

The FSWP is currently being supervised by the Express Entry system, which is gradually moving towards having more than 110,000 immigrants at the end of 2024. According to research, the FSWP immigrants are doing well in Canada in their various fields.

Another benefit you will enjoy under this program is faster permanent residency. You can get your PR in under six months when you go through this program.

How FSWP processes the immigration process

The Express Entry system works with three different skilled worker programs, one of which is the FSWP. FSWP will be the best option if you are not a qualified professional or currently living in Canada. If you meet the FSWP requirement, then you can proceed to submit your Express Entry application. Once you have done that, a Comprehensive Ranking System (CRS) will be sent to you, graded based on several factors. Then, a draw will be pulled up to select applicants based on their high CRS scores. If you are invited to submit your permanent residence application, you would only need to wait for six months before getting your PR.

More elaborately, look through these steps to know what to do during the processing:


Check all the FSWP requirements and see if you meet them.


Using the Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), submit the Express entry profile that you have filled.


Wait for the IRCC to send you an Invitation to Apply (ITA). Note that the IRCC does a draw every two weeks, so keep checking your profile.


Submit the application form for your permanent residence if you got an ITA. If not, you may need to reapply.

Eligibility Criteria

There is a minimum requirement of 67 points out of 100, which every candidate must meet, and it cuts across education, language ability, and work experience. If they meet these requirements, then they can apply for the Federal Skilled Worker Program.

The minimum requirements are:

Eligibility Criteria

Selection Factors

The major FSWP selection factors are listed in bullets below.

Education – You need up to 25 points to be eligible

Language Skills requires about 28 points

Work Experience would only need about 15 points to qualify

Age is generally not more than 12 points

Arranged Employment and Adaptability share 10 points each


Some of the requirements you need to meet under this program are:

  • A validated language test that meets the benchmark of 7 for the two official Canadian languages (English and French)
  • Must have been a full-time worker for a year or be a worker under the National Occupation Classification skill in either type A, B or C.
  • Must have at least a degree, diploma or certificate from a Canadian institution or be in a foreign certificated backed up with an ECA report.
  • Must have enough funds to sustain Canada’s expenses.
  • Also, you must meet at least 67 points using the 100-grid using the selection factor listed above.

Another general requirement to meet is the security and criminality criteria. Whether you are the applicant or the dependent, you must meet all these before being granted a visa.

If you have submitted your profile to the Express Entry system, you need to wait for the IRCC to send an Invitation to Apply (ITA). If they don’t send it, you are not qualified to apply for permanent residence. But you can proceed to use it once you receive the invitation.

You don’t have to be in any particular occupation before being in the FSWP program. If you have a minimum of one year of work experience or have been in an occupation approved by the Canadian Occupational Classification, you can apply.

The following document should be attached when sending your application for permanent residency. Note that you should only send it when you have been invited to apply.

The documents are:

  • Canadian government processing fees according to the IRCC website;
  • Signed and completed application forms;
  • identity and civil status documents;
  • Proof of work experience;
  • travel documents and passports;
  • evidence of professional qualifications/educational training;
  • Canadian educational qualification assessment;
  • IELTS or CELPIP or TEF or TCF Canada results or;
  • Police certificates and clearances;
  • Proof of Arranged Employment (If this applies to you);
  • Evidence that shows financial stability.

You should also not forget to submit these documents provided you have received an invitation to apply:

  • Valid passport
  • Documents of work experience
  • Language test results
  • Police clearance certificate(s)
  • Medical report
  • Photographs of applicants, dependent children and other family members

Make sure you check if the Canadian immigration office has other specific documents that need to be submitted alongside so you can plan and be ready to apply without further delay.