The Skills Shortage

Canada is beginning to feel the effects of a shortage of skilled tradespeople. While this may be a challenge for industry, it signals tremendous opportunity for Trades people. It also emphasizes the importance of career facilitators such as Electrician-jobs.ca and its numerous sister Trade sites. Matching skilled Trades people with available jobs across Canada is key to maximizing Canada’s workforce – getting the right people in the right jobs at the right time! Here’s some interesting information taken from the Canada’s Skilled Trades Website (www.careersintrades.ca):

  • Almost 50% of businesses surveyed in 2003 said a shortage of qualified labour was one of the most important issues facing them. Moreover, 56% of firms said they were forced to hire people even though they were not suitable and almost 30% said they had foregone business opportunities (Canadian Federation of Independent Business, 2003).
  • Canada is already short between 25,000 and 60,000 workers (Canadian Construction Association).
  • The Canadian Federation of Independent Business said the existing skills shortage among smaller businesses was already as high as 300,000 in 2001.
  • In the construction sector, the total labour force declined by about 12,000 or 1.4%
  • In the next two decades, 40% of new jobs will be in the skilled trades and technologies. In 1998, that number was less than 20%.
  • In Canada, the shortfall has been estimated at no fewer than 20,000 unfilled jobs, growing to 50,000 by the year 2010.
  • By 2020, it is estimated that Canada could be short about 1 million workers due to an ageing population and declining birth rates.
  • The percentage of workers aged between 55 and 64 years, who are nearing typical retirement ages, rose from 8.6 percent to 9.6 percent between 1991 and 2001.
  • The first baby-boomers are due to reach retirement age by 2012. In 2015, almost half the workforce (48%) will be between the ages of 45 to 64. By 2026, more than half the population will be over the age of 43.
  • In the steel industry, 45% of all tradespeople are expected to retire by 2006.
  • In the manufacturing sector, there is an estimated 400,000 workers required in the next 15 years due to retirement.
  • 50,000 skilled metal trades’ people will be needed in the next five years.
  • Between 18,000 and 19,000 new jobs will be created within the next 5 years in the collision industry.
  • Canada’s automotive industry will need 30,000 new skilled workers by 2005, due to retirement.
  • The Automotive Parts Manufacturers Association forecasts a 42% vacancy rate for skilled trades by 2007 — nearly 34,000 jobs but only 20,000 skilled workers will be available.