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

Industry News & Insights Employment outlook for Canada

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
Peter Harris on Twitter


  • http://about.me/davidalangay David Gay

    Focusing primarily on the numbers alone may make it a positive outlook, but the devil has always been in the details.

    First of all, the gains are part time jobs. These are not long-term sustainable jobs people enjoy doing but survival jobs. No doubt there is a lot of employment disparity as part of the figures. Employment disparity is a state of working at a job that differs greatly from your career path, like a programmer working as an office temporary (as is my case).

    There is still the continued shift of people westward to Alberta and other western provinces in search of jobs. Ontario continues to be a have-not province, and with people leaving that province, provincial tax revenues are falling. This in turn means less money for provincial infrastructure programs and social assistance services to help those less fortunate.

    While it’s good that young people are finding work, it’s not surprising the unemployment figure is falling since they need summer work to pay for post-secondary education.

    A final note:in Canada, the unemployment rate measures the number of people actively looking for a job as a percentage of the labour force. This does not mean they are actually employed. If people simply give up looking for work, or fall through the cracks and are homeless, those people are not tallied.

    There’s no reason to celebrate. A country as rich in natural resources and a diverse population chomping at the bit to work should not have an unemployment rate as high as 6.9%. All levels of government, the movers and shakers of the business world, and education and employment services must work closer together to deal with this very serious social issue of unemployment.

  • Mahmood Sarkar

    There are NO JOBS IN ONTARIO!