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Access training for new employees with the Canada-Ontario job grant

Employers can receive up to 100 per cent funding from the government

Investing in training is always a worthwhile venture for every business owner. Funding is available to Ontario employers who are looking to invest in their workforce, with assistance from the Government.

The Canada Ontario Job Grant program is funded by The Ministry of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development for employers who are looking for financial support to purchase training for employees and new hires.

Running a business is expensive and finding extra money in your budget to train your staff can seem like an impossible undertaking. The Canada Ontario Job Grant Program provides opportunities for Ontario employers to invest in their workforce by hiring external trainers to train existing staff and new hires.

What better way to attract new staff members or retain existing employees by offering free training?

If you are an employer under 100 employees, you can receive up to 100 per cent funding for new hires who are unemployed.

Eligibility for this requires the new hire to be currently unemployed, and not yet on the new employers’ payroll. For more information, please contact Agilec.

Sue MacMillan is a Canada Ontario Job Grant Facilitator and says that Ontario employers can gain the competitive edge in filling open positions by accessing the grant program.

“We’ve seen industries who are in dire need of staff to fill open positions,” MacMillan said. “With the Canada Ontario Job Grant program, this allows employers to fill those gaps by offering a training incentive for those open positions. This has allowed employers to become very competitive in being a desired company for job seekers.”

Employers can receive up to $10,000 for existing staff members and up to $15,000 for new hires to cover training costs. The training needs to be delivered in Ontario or remotely and by an eligible, third-party trainer.

Employers with 100 or more employees need to contribute half of the training costs. Small employers with less than 100 employees need to contribute 17 per cent of training costs for existing employees.

In addition to offering the grant program, Sue MacMillan also discussed that Agilec offers employment services through Employment Ontario.

This is a government-funded free service that can help employers find employees to fill open positions.

“We have Employment Coaches that work with unemployed individuals to get job ready and Employer Liaisons that can work directly with employers to match those candidates to vacant positions,” MacMillan said.

Trish Holloway is the operations manager of The Lighthouse Orillia and knows first-hand about the benefits of the Canada Ontario Job Grant Program. Agilec walked her through the application process to access subsidized training funding for her staff.

Whether you run a non-profit business like The Lighthouse or a small business in Orillia, funding for workplace development might not always be readily accessible. This opens the door of opportunity for those looking to increase the skill set of their new or existing employees.

Applying for government programs on your own can be daunting, but Agilec not only assists with the application process, they also act as an intermediary between the employer and training vendor. Having that local contact in your corner can be a big help.

“Sometimes grants can be pretty much you and the internet,” Holloway said. “Having that liaison of a person who was the community expert for that specific grant made me have the confidence that I was clicking the right boxes and not necessarily signing up for something that we couldn’t support. Because they were there to answer all my questions, I felt really confident.”

Thanks to programs like these, now every business has access to funding to help their staff, who can then support the community even better. Whether you have 10, 100, or 1,000 employees, workplace development is incredibly valuable for everyone involved.

“Definitely go for it,” Holloway said. “I not only enjoyed it, but I’d constantly recommend it to any other business. No matter what type of training you need, this program supports small businesses. Which then supports their team, which then supports their community or product. To me, it’s a no-brainer.”

To learn more about the Canada Ontario Job Grant Program, you can find additional information at the official COJG website Canada-Ontario Job Grant (

Agilec has 8 offices throughout Ontario, with Canada Ontario Job Grant funding available. To speak with an Agilec COJG representative, please contact 705-325-1203 extension 3008.