Hiring Slows in Canada: What Does This Mean for Employers and Candidates?

Employers and job seekers alike may have to take a new look at our nation’s job picture based on trends in the past few months relevant to jobs, domestic demand, and the labour market throughout the 10 provinces.

The Conference Board of Canada recently reported that job gains have slowed in 2013 and soft domestic demand further contributed to a more stagnant pace of hiring in the third quarter. The picture is nowhere near as grim as it was during the global recession in the latter part of this century’s first decade, but it does give candidates and hiring organizations reason to pause as 2014 operating and business plans unfold.

The Numbers Tell the Story

Consider these Conference Board stats:

  • Soft domestic demand has slowed the pace of hiring in recent months. This trend is projected to continue for the near term.
  • The Help-Wanted index has been declining since June. In July, it nosedived 7.9 percentage points, to 119.6.
  • The most current results show employment decline in six of 10 provinces. Based on July 2013 results, Saskatchewan and British Columbia saw indexes take the most severe falls, at 35.3 and 27.8 points, respectively.
  • The national labour market has softened. The ratio of number of unemployed Canadians to online job postings has increased from 1.96 to 2.05.
  • Employment gains are down. For the first seven months of 2013, employment gains totaled 42,000 versus 126,400 during the same period last year.
  • Unemployment stabilized this summer. Nationwide, unemployment remained steady at 7.2 percent in August. Keeping the national employment picture in perspective, this compares favorably to a peak unemployment rate of 8.7 percent in August 2009.

Consumer Spending Concerns

Canada’s current hiring slowdown threatens to hobble the increased consumer spending that has driven economic growth since the depths of the last decade’s recession.

“Everybody has been saying Canada is okay as long as job growth remains strong. The wheels seem to have fallen off in that sense, and that might position the housing and consumer market to face a little bit greater risk,” Scotiabank’s vice president of economics Derek Holt recently noted.

Canada, the world’s 11th largest economy, would have to add approximately 30,000 jobs a month for the remainder of 2013 to avoid the worst annual employment gain since 2001, with the exception of the 2008 and 2009 recession years.

What’s Job Seeker – or Employer – To Do?      

While job gains have slowed in Canada in 2013, the brightest and the best can still find employment. Even better: The job of our dreams is out there. You just may have to dig deeper and look harder, at least until the national job picture swings upward once again.

Contact the Ontario recruitment experts at Employment Professionals Canada to help you hold on and sustain the roller coaster ride that is today’s national and global economy. Buckle your seatbelt … the best is yet to come!