October 25, 2010

The National Occupational Classification (NOC)

The National Occupational Classification (NOC)

The National Occupational Classification (NOC) is the nationally accepted reference on occupations in Canada. It is the authoritative resource on occupational information in Canada. It is used daily by thousands of people to understand the jobs found throughout Canada's labour market.

There are two major attributes of jobs used as classification criteria in developing the NOC - skill level and skill type.

Skill level is defined generally as the amount and type of education and training required to enter and perform the duties of an occupation. In determining skill level, the experience required for entry, and the complexity and responsibilities typical of an occupation are also considered in relation to other occupations.

There are four skill levels identified in the NOC:

SKILL LEVEL A - requires University degree (bachelor’s, master’s or doctorate)

SKILL LEVEL B - requires two to three years of post-secondary education at community college, institute of technology or CÉGEP. Occupations with supervisory responsibilities are also assigned to skill level B. Occupations with significant health and safety responsibilities (e.g., fire fighters, police officers and licensed practical nurses) are assigned to skill level B.

SKILL LEVEL C - requires one to four years of secondary school education or up to two years of on-the-job training, training courses or specific work experience

SKILL LEVEL D - requires short work demonstration or on-the-job training. No formal educational requirements

Skill type is defined as the type of work performed, although other factors related to skill type are also reflected in the NOC. One of these factors is similarity with respect to the educational discipline or field of study required for entry into an occupation. Another factor is the industry of employment where experience within an internal job ladder or within a specific industry is usually a prerequisite for entry.

Ten broad occupational categories, based on skill type, are identified in the NOC.

0. Management Occupations
1. Business, Finance and Administration
2. Natural and Applied Sciences and Related Occupations
3. Health Occupations
4. Occupations in Social Science, Education, Government Service and Religion
5. Occupations in Art, Culture, Recreation and Sport
6. Sales and Service
7. Trades, Transport and Equipment Operators and Related Occupations
8. Occupations Unique to Primary Industry
9. Occupations Unique to Processing, Manufacturing and Utilities

For Federal Skilled Worker program, only NOC Levels O, A and B are eligible to apply. These are the occupations under NOC Skill Type 0 and Skill Levels A and B.

Currently, only the 29 high demand occupations may apply based on the 2nd Ministerial Instruction. If your occupation is not in the priority list but is included in the NOC Levels 0, A and B, you may still be eligible under the Federal Skilled worker program as long as you have an arranged employment.

For more information about the National Occupational Classification (NOC), visit http://www5.hrsdc.gc.ca.