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Hiring Process

Applying for a position with the government is a major commitment and can often take up to two years to be successful. It can be a discouraging process because governments can go for long periods of time without hiring at all. Conversely, depending on budgets, government agencies can hire a bulk of people all at once. When applying you will encounter the following three stages. For Border Services you generally take the tests before being interviewed.

1) Applying for the Job
- Once they receive your application, it can take approximately one month for a response.

2) Invited to Interview
- If successful you will be required to take tests relevant to the position to which you have applied.

3) Invited to Take a Test
- Tests may include Language Tests, Situational Judgment Tests, Written Communication Proficiency Tests, as well as others.


Applying for the Job

Every year the Public Service Commission receives thousands of applicants for positions. There are two areas you should be familiar with on the PSC website:

All Jobs Open to the Public (Click Here)

This contains a list of currently available jobs, which are broken down by category or region. You are required to provide information, create a cover letter and build a resume specific to the job to which you are applying.

It is also possible to create a Job Alert in this area. You need to provide the information for a position you would like to have, and you will be alerted by email when this position becomes available. At this point you would have to apply to it.

Post Secondary Recruitment (Click Here)

A second area you should monitor, provided you have the qualifications, is the Post Secondary Recruitment area. This area contains job listings that are different than those in the “Jobs Open to the Public” area. To access these jobs, create a “Job File” containing the following information:

- Personal Information
- Address Information
- Education
- Work Locations
- Languages
- Employment Equity
- Resume
- Completed Courses
- Employment Tenure
- Job Categories and Salary

You will be able to match your profile to jobs that are currently available in the public service. Once you have selected a currently available job, you should complete all of the requirements prior to the closing date. Please note that you can only post one resume on this system, and therefore can’t tailor it toward specific postings.

Key Information

There is standard information that must be input into the applications. The screening tools used to filter job applicants are very specific. Often they perform word search filters to determine if applicants possess the requisites for the job. When applying for positions, make sure you use the specific words for which they ask in their job descriptions. Being overly creative could cause your application to be overlooked.

For example, if the position for which you are applying requires accounting experience, state very clearly that you have “Accounting Experience”. Adding detail is fine, but make sure you don’t obscure the key requisites for which they are searching.

First you have to select the job for which you are interested in applying. It is important to make sure you have the relevant experience and education. You can post your information, resume, cover letter and career objective online. Once you have officially applied for a position, it normally takes a month until you are notified. If you have the relevant experience and are selected, you will be invited for an interview. If you are successful at this stage you will then be invited to perform the relevant test.

Contract Work

Term or contract work is another strategy you can use to secure a position with the government. The difference with these jobs is that they are not permanent, and they are not union positions. They are often a foot in the door and a chance to prove your abilities in a government position. These jobs are not intended to lead to permanent positions, but the experience and contacts that you can develop with them can often lead to permanent positions.

Careers.ca (Click Here)

Careers.ca is a resource that you should use to be notified of government positions as they become available. There are four searchable criteria that you can use for finding out information on these jobs.

1) Government Jobs
2) Contract / permanent positions
3) Non-Profit / Companies working with the government
4) All hiring agencies

Canadian Border Services (Click Here)

Canadian Border Services has an employment section that can be found through the above link. You will find a great deal of information on the process as well as information on positions they are trying to fill.


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