Employment outlook for Canada

Employment Update: What’s trending in Canadian hiring in April 2014

Peter Harris|

Statistics Canada this morning released its Labour Force Survey for March. Job creation in Canada trounced expectations, showing the largest employment gains in the past seven months. Online job postings and other economic indicators also continue to point upwards.

Labour Force Survey Summary

The Canadian economy added 42,900 jobs in March which brought the national unemployment rate back down to 6.9%. These gains are nearly double the 22,000 jobs that most economists had been predicting for last month.

Provincially, British Columbia and New Brunswick saw the most growth in employment, while there were job declines in Nova Scotia. The province of Quebec also saw some slight job creation.

There were more people working in health care and social assistance, and in business, building and other support services last month. There were fewer jobs in agriculture.

There were also positive signs on the youth employment front. Employment for people aged 15 to 24 rose by 33,000 in March, however the unemployment rate for this demographic stayed at 13.6%. Traditionally more young people enter the job market in the spring as they begin to seek summer employment and post-graduation jobs.

See: The Top Twenty Student / Entry-Level Jobs Hiring Right Now (and What They pay)

Online Job postings

Nationally, online job postings are up by 12% over this time last year. Most of this growth is seen in Ontario and the Western provinces, which are up 19% and 20% respectively. By contrast, online job postings in Quebec are down by 7% year-over-year.

The industry that is seeing the most growth right now is the hospitality sector which has 31% more jobs posted online that one year earlier. The lion’s share of the increases in hospitality jobs are also in Ontario (+31%) and the West (+51%).

Solid gains were also made in the Skilled Trades and Transportation jobs (+23%), Arts, Culture, Sports and recreation jobs (+23%), and in Manufacturing, Utilities and natural Resources (+20%).

The only sector that has seen a decline in online job postings year-over-year is the white collar Engineering, Architecture, Science & Technology field (-3%). And the drop is quite small.

The most available jobs in online job postings nationally:

Online job postings have been decreasing by roughly 33% a month for the past 13 months for:

  • Insurance Agents and Brokers
  • Retail and Wholesale Buyers
  • Purchasing and Inventory Clerks
  • Property administrators
  • Industrial Designers

Looking ahead:

Online job postings and the other key economic indicators that we watch closely are all showing positive signs. Workopolis expects to see continued increases in employment throughout the month of April and into May.

See also: Canada’s highest and lowest paying jobs


Peter Harris
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