TN vs J1 - are there any "delays" / "wait times" to TN?

Hi, I will have a job offer as a postdoc at a university and I am looking down the barrel at the prospect of applying for a J1 in these times, which I'm told could mean a 5 mo wait and appointments are really thin on the ground (the US embassy near me actually doesn't do non-emergency appts these days). I am a Canadian citizen and through my own research it seems I could apply for a TN, I am not sure how common it is to apply for a TN for a postdoc researcher (science) though.

Forgive the noob question but I have seen you can do appts or walk-ins. But is there any in theory "wait" / application processing time, or could I start any time I wanted?

It seems like a difference of having to wait around for 5++ months, or starting whenever suited me rather than going through months of visa delay agony. Any help?

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