26 November 2020
Ocean recruits internationally
Like many companies in Quebec, the recruitment of qualified labour for certain trades is a real issue. At Ocean Group, this is particularly true for welder-fitter positions, where candidates are becoming increasingly rare. In addition, the geographic location of our shipyard in Isle-aux-Coudres, in the Charlevoix region, adds challenges with a limited labour market. In order to meet this recruitment need, our teams have had to turn to new outreach activities.
In June 2019, a team from the Ocean Industries Inc. shipyard began a recruitment process abroad with the help of Québec International and the financial support of Emploi-Québec. Morocco and Tunisia had been chosen for this mission since these two countries have a pool of qualified workers in welding and assembly. In addition, French is a fluently spoken language and all potential workers had to have functional French. Nearly one hundred interviews were conducted in order to select the candidates according to Ocean Industries’ standards. Successful applicants participated in a welding test in their respective countries. Following the results of the tests, some of them went through a second virtual interview with the team members dedicated to this project. As a result, three Tunisians and six Moroccans were hired to live the immigration experience with Ocean Industries Inc.
After several months of procedures, we are happy to finally welcome these new workers in the beautiful Charlevoix region. A total of nine people will join our existing teams. In the current context, all newcomers will have to submit to a 14-day quarantine before starting work, as required by our governments. Housing will be provided to them during this period.
In order to facilitate their integration, and given that many will be accompanied by their families, integration measures have been put in place such as registering children on a waiting list for daycare, registering them for school, helping them find housing, informing them about nearby services, etc. A collection of winter clothing and accessories is also organized so that they all would be warm upon their arrival. We would like to sincerely thank the employees who have made the effort to give their new colleagues a proper welcome.
In addition, newcomers will be paired with site workers who wish to participate not only in their integration within the company but also within the community. In this sense, the Isle-aux-Coudres shipyard has set up the VOIL program (Vivre (Live) – Océan – Interculturel – Local) in order to accompany these new employees in their professional and social development.
On October 25, the first worker from this international recruitment mission arrived among us and the integration process began. The other eight workers will arrive progressively over the next few months and we are looking forward to welcoming them into our large professional family.