Changes to NOC System

In November
NOC System

Canada uses NOC 2016 to evaluate its immigrants’ profile. However, starting November 2022, the government of Canada, along with Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), will be using NOC 2021. With that, the ways in which the profile of immigrant applicants will be evaluated will change along with the new NOC system.

The National Occupational Classification System (NOC) is used to systemize occupations. Your occupation is classified using the National Occupation Code (NOC) code system. Canada’s immigration uses NOC to find out if a certain job or even work experience type meets their eligibility criteria. With that, it determines whether the job is skilled, semi-skilled, or unskilled. NOC codes are essential when applying for Canada’s immigration programs, since they determine which programs you will be eligible for. These occupations are grouped based on the applicants’ duties in their job and what work they do.

Major Changes in the NOC System

1. Replacement of Skill Levels with TEER Categories

In the NOC 2021, not only are skills assessed, but also the level of training, of formal education, and of job experience needed to get into each occupation, as well as the responsibilities associated with each occupation.

TEER stands for:

T – raining


E – xperience

R – esponsibilities

2. Number of TEER Categories

In NOC 2021, a new six-category framework has replaced the NOC’s present four-category “skill level” framework, describing the number of fields of training, education, experience, and responsibilities (TEER) required before entering each occupation.

As of 2021, there are no longer four skill types (i.e., NOC A, B, C, and D), but six TEER categories: 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5.

NOC system

3. NOC Becomes a 5-Tiered Classification System

On the NOC 2016, codes only have four digits. In NOC 2021, codes are five digits.


NOC 2016

NOC 2021

3012 – Registered nurses and registered psychiatric nurses

31301 – Registered nurses and registered psychiatric nurses

Starting November 2022, Canada will use the five-digit code. Every digit represents a meaning.

1st Digit – Represents broad and occupational category

2nd Digit – Represents TEER category

1st 2 Digits – Represent Major Groups Together

1st 3 Digits – Represent Sub-Major Group

1st 4 Digits – Represent Minor Group

Full 5 Digits – Represent the Unit / Occupation

4. Additional Occupations in the Classification System

Several changes have been made to occupations in the new NOC 2021. To keep up with the evolution of the labour market, these changes to occupations are being made. There are 516 occupations included in the new NOC 2021, compared with 500 in the previous NOC 2016.

Here is the list of the 16 newly added occupations, which will be eligible under Express Entry in 2022:

  • Payroll administrators
  • Dental assistants and dental laboratory assistants
  • Nurse aides, orderlies and patient service associates
  • Pharmacy technical assistants and pharmacy assistants
  • Elementary and secondary school teacher assistants
  • Sheriffs and bailiffs
  • Correctional service officers
  • Bylaw enforcement and other regulatory officers
  • Estheticians, electrologists and related occupations
  • Residential and commercial installers and servicers
  • Pest controllers and fumigators
  • Other repairers and servicers
  • Transport truck drivers
  • Bus drivers, subway operators and other transit operators
  • Heavy equipment operators
  • Aircraft assemblers and aircraft assembly inspectors.

5. Ineligible Occupations

Meanwhile, here is the list of the ineligible occupations for Express Entry in November 2022:

  • Other performers
  • Program leaders and instructors in recreation, sport and fitness
  • Tailors, dressmakers, furriers
  • Milliners

However, these occupations will still be eligible under other immigration programs, such as the Provincial Nomination Program (PNP).

NOC 2021’s Impact on Express Entry

NOCs help IRCC determine whether a candidate qualifies for Express Entry. As of now, candidates can only submit an Express Entry profile if they possess NOC skill types A, B, or 0. With the new NOC system, occupations in TEERs 0, 1, 2, and 3 will be eligible for Express Entry.

Want to Find Your NOC Code Before the New NOC System Start in November?

Find Your NOC Code Here. Knowing your NOC code is as important as your application. It is a key part of your application process that can help you apply for special immigration programs in Canada. It is an essential part of your application and should be confirmed with a professional before you submit it. It can often be tricky to select your NOC Code, and selecting the wrong one may result in missed opportunities. Book a consultation with us or give us a call at +1-604-484-9474 and we will assist you in finding your NOC code to increase the chance of your immigration program approval.


Please note that none of the information on this website should be construed as being legal advice. As well, you should not rely on any of the information contained in this website when determining whether and how to apply to a given program.
Canadian immigration law is constantly changing, and the information above may be outdated.
If you have a question about the contents of this blog, or any question about Canadian immigration law, please contact the Author. Please book a consultation if you would like to get answers to general immigration questions and advice specific to your situation.

About Chitra & Associates

Chitra & Associates Immigration Consultants Inc. is an Immigration Consulting company specialising in Canadian Immigration and Visa Services. We provide services in the area of Economic Immigration, permanent residency for Canada for Individuals, Business Immigration, work permits, visitor visas, study permits, and much more.

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