This sounds very strange to me. If the majority of your work experience is in office administration, then you absolutely should be scored 2 for occupational skills - depending on the type of work, it's either NOC B or NOC C. Having a bachelor's degree makes no difference to that score. However, you did say that you were an admin assistant for the last four years - you don't say whether in fact that's the majority of your experience. It's possible that your score could be 0 if you have MORE years in NOC A roles.MG742047 wrote: ↑Jun 26th, 2017 6:27 pmHi EmpCouns,
Wondering if you can help me. My SC application was sent in and I had 16 points on the suitability assessment template. I heard back from the Ministry that my application was denied because apparently my Service Provider should have scored me 0 in occupational skills (originally it was a 2), meaning now I'm 2 points shy of the minimum suitability.
I do have a B.A. Degree but my work experience for the past 4 years was administrative assistance. So, their argument is that I have enough skills being an admin assistant to find another job being an admin assistant. I applied to many and they were included in my job search forms, and still I was not successful in getting a job. The other component of that section is that there are few job opportunities for sustainable employment. Their argument here was that there are many admin assistant job postings...
As for job-searching, there may well be many postings, but there are also many people chasing those postings. If you have provided evidence to your counsellor of an effective job-search which has been unsuccessful, and your counsellor has described this well in the application, in my experience this is normally enough.
First of all, service providers are NOT Ministry employees. We work for non-profits or community colleges or (occasionally) for-profit agencies that receive some Employment Ontario funding. We're provided with the Second Career guidelines and any further clarificatory documents that come out from EO, and (in my area at least) there are local meetings where updates on guidance are passed on to us. The Ministry couldn't possibly be held responsible for a service provider getting it wrong. Yes, we're supposed to know the rules, but there are times when a service provider's interpretation may not be completely accurate - or a service provider is taking a long shot in the hope that the Ministry will approve - and in those cases an application can be rejected. It's rare, but it does happen.Now, I can come up with several reasons as to why I find this highly unreasonable but wanted your feedback. Depending on your response, I suppose my questions might be:
1. Do you think it's fair I am being rejected for my Service Provider scoring it incorrectly? Ultimately would it be the Ministry held responsible for communicating correct procedures to their employees? The entire time my Service Provider and I believed my score should be 16 and I'm not sure I would have even attempted the application had we not been certain (to her knowledge) it would be 16.
I'd have to have more information about your work experience as a whole. If the majority of your work experience is in the admin field, then the decision makes no sense to me. However, if you have spent more of your working life in NOC A roles, then 0 points is correct and your score would be 14. This is how that suitability criterion should be scored, according to the guidance we have been provided with by MAESD. If your score in that category is properly 0, in that case your only chance would be to have your service provider submit the application with an exception request - and those can be tricky. More below.2. Based on my situation as well as my experiences jumping through the SC hoops and runarounds, is there good reason to appeal the decision?
I've had one client appeal a denial (this was a denial of an exception request). The applicant - you - would write a letter explaining why you are appealing, and you can include supporting evidence. In my client's case, I also included a letter in support of her application. She also submitted extensive job-search records and a statement from an employer in her field about the poor state of the labour market in her specific occupation. The appeal was denied - quite patronisingly - with the observation that she and her service provider agency had not done enough to find her employment (despite all the evidence she had included to show the opposite).3. Are you able to explain how an appeal process typically works? I asked over the phone when I was initially declined, but the consultant refused to answer my questions and was, to be honest, quite rude in dismissing me. All I got was that I had to wait for a rejection letter in the mail and that letter explains the process (mentioning also that the letter could take a month to be delivered to me).
Do I think every appeal would be brushed aside so casually? No. In this case, we were appealing an exception denial, which is a discretionary decision anyway. If you believe that your suitability score should be 16 and can present evidence supporting this, then that's an absolutely valid ground on which to appeal.
The impact of post-secondary education (any post-secondary, from a college certificate all the way to a PhD) is that your suitability score for educational attainment is 1. Compare that to someone who only completed high school: their score on that category is 3. In most cases, existing post-secondary education does make it easier for someone to find work. In some cases, it does not: for example, is the education vocational in nature? (what can you do with a BA in social anthropology or linguistics without additional education? What about a community college diploma in photography?). Then there is education which is out of date - eg an IT qualification from 10 years ago where the person hasn't worked in the field. Or education from outside Canada where, even if it's evaluated as equivalent to Canadian, doesn't help the person find work because they're not able to obtain the required professional licence (eg an internationally-trained doctor or architect). In all those cases, I would argue that the education has little labour market value. In some cases, it can even count against the job-seeker because they may be seen as over-qualified where they're applying for positions that don't need their education.4. I guess similar to the appeal questions, I understand that there are sometimes exceptional circumstances for those who score 15 or less and are still able to be approved. I read a previous thread of yours which did mention how because someone with a BA degree scored higher in that section, but because BAs are generalized and not vocational it was not held against them. Do you remember these details and would you think I'd fall under that category too? What might be some other examples of exceptional circumstances?
I don't think I ever generalised about BA degrees by saying they're not vocational. Some are, clearly, but all Second Career applications are about the individual far more than the educational qualification. What has this person done since graduating, and what are her/his specific barriers?
Other rationales I've used for exception requests: if someone can no longer work in their previous occupation, for example due to health issues, there's clearly a strong case for the need for training even if they don't have 16 points. Or the person's occupation is subject to repeated seasonal layoffs and later rehires, and so they always get recalled before they make it to 16 points - there, you present a rationale as to why entering training makes more sense than returning to work (eg repeated recourse to EI). I'm sure there are other possible rationales that would present themselves in individual cases. Essentially, what an exception request is about is making the case that this person really needs retraining for a reason or reasons the suitability criteria aren't fully identifying.
One further observation: none of my clients have done this but I know it's not unheard of for people who aren't happy with the decision of a Ministry (or local service provider) to go to their MPP. That doesn't guarantee the result you want, of course, but if you appeal and the decision is not in your favour and you still believe that you should have been credited with 16 points it could be worth trying.