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A Strategic Approach to Application Processing Times by IRCC: Improving Efficiency in Canada


December 28th, 2023 at 12:17 am

A Strategic Approach to Application Processing Times by IRCC: Improving Efficiency in Canada

The IRCC will imminently reassess the deadlines for processing applications for significant programs. The department has recently unveiled a new initiative called “An Immigration System for Canada’s Future.”

IRCC to re-evaluate application processing times soon

In order to achieve the goal of standardizing the standard processing durations for applications, this program has been developed. Candidates can avoid waiting for years by using this most recent method, which involves realigning the number of applications received with the number of seats that are available for admission. This is especially the case in the event that the demand for the programs is greater than the capacity that is available.

It is important to note that the reduction of wait periods for admissions intake will enable candidates and their support networks to better prepare for their arrival. The integration and settlement of these individuals in Canada will be facilitated as a consequence of this.

Exceeded application intake for specific programs

The Parents and Grandparents Program began its voyage of backlogs with the start of the pandemic, and it has now been almost three years.

Even during the pandemic, IRCC continued to accept applications for PGP. This was the time when the department faced border closures, travel restrictions, and a lack of capacity to handle applications due to the office shutdown. The situation persisted even when only a limited number of visas were provided under PGP each year.

According to reports, the IRCC has a PGP inventory of around 100,000 people. As of 2023, the agency is still working through the backlog of 2020 applications.

Individuals having Canadian citizenship and PR can use this program to sponsor their parents and grandparents so they can live in Canada.

Overall, IRCC will re-evaluate application processing timelines for essential programs shortly.

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2024-2026 immigration targets

IRCC typically announces its immigration targets for the next three years in its annual Immigration Levels Plan. On November 1, 2023, the current immigration levels plan officially revealed its targets for 2024–2026. The plan establishes the target number of permanent residents admitted to Canada. The objective is to receive 485,000 PRs in 2024, then 500,000 PRs each year in 2025 and 2026, according to the most recent plan.

According to Marc Miller, the current strategy is on track to strengthen Canada’s economy and labor force through sustainable population growth. This will be acknowledged in the application intake.

The majority of public relations schools have a cap on the number of applicants accepted. The Immigration Levels Plan can be used to calculate this. Such PR initiatives include the Provincial Nominee Program and the PGP.

Visitor visas and work or study permits are temporary residence programs with no limit on the number of applications accepted each year. This non-limitation frequently results in slower processing and an application backlog.

The immigration minister expressed his opposition to limiting the submission of applications for study permits. He made no attempt to curb the number of international students admitted to Canada.

OAG Report

Re-evaluating and realigning application intake is one of IRCC’s primary tactics for improving processing times. This action was taken when the Auditor General of Canada confirmed that processing times were unduly protracted. As a result, the report concluded by recommending that the agency implement speedier processing timeframes for PR programs.

Furthermore, it urged that the IRCC evaluate backlogged applications in order to identify processing bottlenecks and take aggressive action. This also implies that the department must quickly clear the previous application backlog.

The new plan confirmed the use of digital technologies, allowing cops to handle requests more efficiently.

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Workload changes in regional offices to account for performance, according to the OAG report, will also be required.

Finally, the IRCC Strategy indicates that, in order to avoid prejudice, sophisticated analytics will be used more frequently to automate some judgments in typical cases.

This component of the strategy is currently being implemented. In September, IRCC announced that it would employ advanced analytics to process work permit extensions and post-graduation work permits (PGWPs).

Furthermore, these technologies will consider clerical and repetitive duties, resulting in application prioritization. As a result, dealing with apps will be more convenient. Furthermore, these tools will give immigration officials more time to process urgent or complex applications.

Backlogs of existing applications

The IRCC’s primary objective has always been to provide its customers with an experience that is free of defects. Since its inception, it has been operating under the assumption that at least eighty percent of applications should be completed within the typical processing hours. The service standard, on the other hand, looks different depending on the application. In the case of Express Entry applications, for instance, the processing period is estimated to be six months. On the other hand, the waiting period for applications for family class sponsorship might be as long as a year.

According to the most recent data from the IRCC department, there have been nearly 2,194,900 applications since September 30th, with 928,000 of those applications falling into the backlog category. Based on this information, it appears that 928,000 applications were unable to be processed in accordance with the expectations of the service.

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On the other hand, this suggests that there was a little decline in the number of applications for inventory (2,198,000) around the end of August. As an additional point of interest, there were around 585,700 applications for temporary residence permits that were pending in September of this year. Visas for tourists, work permits, and study permits are all included in this category.

This is an 18% increase over August figures.

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