Overview for 2018-19 of career opportunities on PEI in 36 sectors/industries
During the past year The Employment Journey covered many articles on the following sectors/industries and gained valuable information about the employment opportunities that exist on PEI.
Read about all of the career options that exist in each Sector/Industry on PEI.
Aerospace, Defence, and Marine
There have been some changes in this sector over this past year, and opportunities still very much exist with the right training. The Employment Journey has been able to stay updated as a result of our relationship with the Atlantic Canada Aerospace and Defence Association.
“The economic importance of PEI’s Aerospace and Defence sector is huge,” says Allan Campbell, Provincial Director, Atlantic Canada Aerospace & Defence Association (ACADA). “Measured by the value of our exports, the sector ranks second, next to agriculture. Since its inception in 1992 at Slemon Park, it has been one of the fastest growing sectors on PEI. It employs about 1,200 people directly, and there are a lot of indirect jobs as well.
“PEI aerospace employers are recruiting for CNC Machinist, Technician, Engineer, Controller, specialty positions (PLC Programmer, PVD Engineer), Project Manager, and Management. One way to enter the aerospace field is to enroll in the Holland College Gas Turbine Engine Repair & Overhaul Technician program.
“Access to skilled labour can often be a challenge,” says Allan. “CNC Programmers and Machinists are probably the two aerospace occupations that companies are having the most difficulty staffing. Other positions requiring highly specialized skills can also be difficult to fill. Some employers have had to recruit off-Island.
“Labour challenges and labour shortages are not unique to PEI aerospace companies. We have an aging workforce, and there are more people exiting the workforce than entering it, which is creating labour shortages nationally.”
Hands-on mechanical skills, good hand-eye coordination, good knowledge base in mathematics, and a good grasp of technology are beneficial in this field. Soft skills such as attention to detail and analytical thinking are also important.
“We partner with Holland College and UPEI to make sure our efforts are aligned,” says Allan. “Our end goal is to point students in the right direction and give our educational partners the tools they need.”
Allan says that ACADA also plans to discuss with their partners the need for training programs for CNC operators on PEI. Currently, CNC Machinists go to Moncton for their second year of training.
For more information about this sector, click here.
With the Food Island Partnership and other events and initiatives of the Agriculture Sector Council, we had a great year of coverage. Farm labourers are in high demand and the Farm Technician Apprenticeship program is a great way to increase your skills and possibly your wages in this sector. We also try to help the Agriculture Sector Council promote their employment services to match employers with job seekers with a monthly listing in our Calendar of Events.
The Harvest & Prosper pilot program in 2017 provided farmers and agriculture companies with some much-needed staff. The project provided participants with temporary jobs, and some workers gained full-time year-round work.
“This project could lead to people being hired for long-term jobs with good wages and benefits,” says Laurie Loane of the PEI Agriculture Sector Council. “One of the biggest challenges in the agriculture industry is labour shortages, especially during harvest time,” says Laurie. “People who work in the industry struggle with transportation and child care because of the long hours and rural work locations.”
The Harvest & Prosper program addressed some of the human resource issues in agriculture. The program gave newcomers, social assistance recipients, and clients on disability support an opportunity to be exposed to this line of work. Coaches and mentors helped participants overcome barriers to employment. Prosper East and West is the new program name and commenced again in 2018.
For more information about the Agriculture sector, click here.
Auto Service & Small & Heavy Equipment Repair
We spoke with some companies that provided great insight into the many career opportunities in this field. Automobile and heavy equipment mechanics are in demand. As a result of the short supply of heavy equipment mechanics, some companies are willing to train on the job and apprentice those showing a strong interest and ability.
To read about companies who provide great careers in these trades, click here.
We continued to provide coverage about opportunities with car dealerships. A year ago, it was brought to our attention that there was a need to make people aware of the wide variety of job options that have good potential and provide year-round employment with advancement opportunities.
In 2015, there were 574 full-time and 22 part-time jobs in this sector. We wrote about the job choices and that it’s not only about selling and fixing cars – you can be a Chief Financial Officer or General Manager or work in marketing or human resources, for example – it’s big business.
To explore career options further, click here. .
Bioscience is known as a sector that provides employment for a wide range of qualifications from entry level to PhD.
PEI Bioscience companies focus on:
- Human health & nutrition
- Fish health
- Animal health & nutrition
- Human/animal health diagnostics
- Contract manufacturing services
- Medical devices
We follow announcements especially of new and expanding companies, and followed up on companies we covered in the year prior. We also keep a close eye on the activities of the PEI BioAlliance. We were able to profile the many careers and steps people take to advance in the industry.
Since 2005, the number of people working in the Biotechnology industry on PEI has more than tripled. Last year, the PEI BioAlliance announced an industry development strategy that expects revenues to double and 500 new jobs to be added by 2020.
We constantly receive new job postings from Vivian Beer, HR with BioAlliance, and we share this information through social media.
For more information about the bioscience sector, click here
Career Development Profession
Career Development Professionals work with people of all ages to help them to manage their learning, work, leisure, and transitions. The goal of career services is to help people to pursue learning and to find work which is personally meaningful and to learn how to manage transitions in today’s ever-evolving labour market, read more.
The EJ have been noticing a rising need for more people to enter this field. As a result of this rising trend we have been doing more articles.
On PEI, they are employed in settings such as:
- Employment Assistance Services
- Community Sector Network -organizations/agencies- Non-profit
- Labour Market Information Specialties
- Department of Workforce & Advanced Learning
- Service Canada
- Industry Sector Councils / Associations
- Department of Education, Early Learning & Culture
- Private Employers-Human Resources departments
- Post-Secondary Education & Training Institutions- Career Services
For more information about career options in this field on PEI, click here.
Construction- Residential/Commercial/ and Road & Bridge Building
Trades/Construction/Road Building received a high amount of coverage because of the demand for trades people. Most jobs are full-time, year-round with the exception of some of the crew who work in road and bridge construction.
Trades are starting to see retirement, and these employees need to be replaced immediately. Most recently, a news release from the provincial government really shed light on the great opportunities that exist in these trades. The Prince Edward Island construction sector has immediate needs for 500 to 750 workers.
“The aging of the population is affecting the number of construction workers required,” says Sam Sanderson, General Manager of the Construction Association of PEI (CAPEI). “The shortage of skilled tradespeople regionally and nationally is becoming a serious issue. Carpenters, Project Managers, Estimators, Site Supervisors, Electricians, and Floor Installers are in demand. Qualified Heavy Equipment Operators are also difficult position to fill.”
“There is a shortage in skilled labourers and heavy equipment operators,” says Melissa Paquet, Executive Director of the PEI Road Builders & Heavy Construction Association. “Qualified Heavy Equipment Operators and Mechanics are difficult positions to fill.
Melissa says there is also a shortage of Flaggers. “Flaggers need to first take a safety course, but they don’t necessarily need to have experience, because they could be trained on the job.
“Flagging is a tough job. They are standing all day in all kinds of weather, and there can be an element of danger dealing with traffic. This year, we had the Contractors change their signage – high intensity florescent orange.
“Anyone interested in working in this industry is welcome to contact our office. I can put people in touch with most of the road building companies in operation on PEI. Job seekers can send me a resumè, and I will forward it to our members.
“Job seekers can also contact company owners directly to ask what skills they are looking for and how to get into positions.”
To explore these trades further, visit
Areas in Culture/Creative:
- Crafts and Design
- Live Performing Arts
- Film, TV and Media Arts Production
- Interactive Media
- Visual Arts
- Music and Sound Recording
- Museums, Archives, Libraries, & Heritage
- Writing and Publishing
Jobs are seasonal or short term in nature and self-employment is high in this sector. Mark Sandiford, Executive Director of CreativePEI (formerly called Culture PEI) is a great contact for us as we promote opportunities in this sector. Mark loves to get out there and speak to groups about their options. There are also training programs taking place that we have been promoting as a great gateway for people to enter good careers, such as Theatre Production Mentorship training.
In 2017, the Government of PEI released Cultivating Growth – A Five Year Action Plan for the Culture and Creative Industries. Highlights of the report include renewed annual investment in the PEI Art Bank, a local Film Media Fund, and investing in public art, festivals, and events.
For more info about the Culture/Creative sector on PEI, click here
The Information and Communications Technology Council (ICTC) is the national centre of expertise for the digital/computing economy. A recent report from the ICTC called The Next Talent Wave: Navigating the Digital Shift – Outlook 2021 highlights an acute demand for people with expertise in this field.
ICTC’s labour market forecast describes an increasing demand for adaptable, innovative workers with information and communications technology skills. Employment is in steady and growing demand within major industries such as Manufacturing, Public Administration, Finance and Insurance, and Professional, Scientific and Technical Services.
Employment is in steady and growing demand within major industries such as Manufacturing, Public Administration, Finance and Insurance, and Professional, Scientific and Technical Services.
This industry has a strong impact on all industries, including Healthcare, Transportation, and Agriculture. Because of advancements in technology, the nature of the work is changing.
ICTC forecasts employment in this sector on PEI will grow steadily from 2,500 workers in 2017 to 2,900 in 2021.
The top five occupations experiencing labour shortages according to ICTC research area:
- Computer and Information Systems Managers
- Computer Engineers (expert Software Engineers and Designers)
- Database Analysts and Database Administrators
- Computer Programmers and Interactive Media Developers
- Graphic Arts Technicians
For more information about the Digital/computing industry, click here.
Early Childhood Education
Early Childhood Educators work in designated and non-designated early childhood centres, and in licensed centres in full-day or half-day programs, family resource centre programs, school-aged programs, and licensed family home care.
Jobs in Early Childhood Centres
Director or Supervisor
Early Childhood Educators
Special Needs Assistant/Inclusions Support Worker
Early Childhood Educator Assistants
Substitute Early Childhood Educators require a criminal record check and vulnerable sector check, must be 18 years of age or older, and have emergency first aid certification. They do not require Early Childhood Care and Education training, although some experience working with children is beneficial.
To further explore careers in Early Childhood Education, click here.
Finance, insurance, real estate, and leasing
This industry has so much promise and opportunity. We are seeing more opportunities with banks and investment agencies such as Invesco. When hiring, they seem to take into consideration transferable skills such as money management and customer service.
Some job titles
- Insurance adjuster
- Financial clerk
- Financial and investment analyst
For more information, click here.
Fisheries and Aquaculture
These two sectors need help to continually get the word out that jobs are available. Over the last two years, we also promoted the bursary programs offered to students working in these two sectors.
Working in fish processing plants across the Island has expanded to more months of work than what was available five years ago. They most often run from May until December, and mussel and oyster production is year-round and companies often offers benefits. Students can earn a good amount of money during the summer and during the school year because of the many hours of work available, and wages are increasing a bit each year.
For the second time, we did an interview with Fisheries and Ocean Canada, Catch Certification Program Operations Centre, Tignish. It was an indication of retirement starting to open positions within government. This opportunity was to create a casual list. Those working on a casual basis are able to apply for internal jobs. The background required to be on the casual list was not extensive. It could be basic administration skills, so again it’s a great way to get your foot in the door.
This sector has seen a lot of attention and funding support from the province.This sector ties in agriculture, aquaculture, and fisheries, which have been recruiting staff. It also saw some start-up businesses.
To explore the companies further, click here.
It has become the mission of The Employment Journey to provide awareness of the many opportunities in healthcare on PEI. There are endless choices in the private and public sectors.
A great way to explore is to visit the Guide of Health Professions – click here – The Health Career Guide provides key information on over 60 healthcare professions in the Province of Prince Edward Island. You may find information about salaries, high school academic and other requirements, and educational programs.
We were also able to have an excellent interview with PEI Public Service Commission who now steadily promotes their casual list as a way to start your career with the provincial government. “There is a need for everything from cooks, to service workers, RCWs to LPNs,” says Janet Horne, Staffing Consultant with PEIPSC. “It’s a constant intake. We often interview for these positions on a monthly or bimonthly basis.”
“For many, working as a casual employee helps them get started in their career,” says Janet Horne. “Working as a casual allows the employee to apply for internal job competitions.”
Some areas of employment include:
- Medical Laboratory Technicians
- Diagnostic Imaging
- Occupational Therapists
- Nursing (including Registered Nurses, Licensed Practical Nurses, Resident Care Workers)
- Service Workers (including environmental, laundry, dietary)
- Maintenance Workers (Carpenters, Power Engineers, Plumbers, Electricians)
- Addiction Workers
- Administrative Support
- Clerical Support
To explore the many career choices in Healthcare, click here.
Justice & Public Safety
As a result of interviewing a corrections officer, this sector was added to the EJ website. The interview was a very good insight into all the career choices and opportunities in this field on PEI. Kim Kempton was Warden/Manager of the Provincial Correctional Centre for seven years and is now retired. Her journey to this field started over 30 years ago. After high school, she took a gap year. “I did not know what I wanted to do as a career, and I needed time to work it out.”
She worked as a waitress for a year, and then went to a small college in Vermont, USA, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in Human Resource Management. “The four-year degree in HR management was a springboard to great careers,” says Kim.
“In 1999, a one-year opportunity came up at the Correctional Centre. I thought I would not want to stay more than a year, but I never left. My past experiences correlated with this work and it was a fit for me. Looking back, I had a great career.”
- Correctional Officer
- Youth Worker
- Counsellor – addictions, family, and more
- Management and Supervisory positions
- Human Resources
- Probation Officer
- Victim Services Management
For more information about the many career choices in the Justice and Public Safety sector,
Manufacturing continues to experience growth and we have been doing extensive coverage with companies such as Trout River Industries, Eastern Fabricators, MacDougal Steel, and others.
Most of our promotions are for Welder and CNC Machinist careers, although there are other jobs in demand such as Sheet Metal Workers and Iron Workers.
To explore the many companies, post-secondary options, and careers, click here.
Professional, Scientific & Technical Services on PEI
This sector covers a broad range of careers, including:
- Legal Services
- Tax Preparation
- Computer Systems
- Scientific Research and Development Services
- Computer Systems Design and Related Services
- Building Inspection Services
- Interior Design Services
- Research and Development in Physical, Engineering and Life Sciences
- Advertising Agencies
- Public Relations Services
- Market Research
- Translation and Interpretation Services
- Veterinary Services
Accounting services, computer systems services, marketing and sales, and translation services would all be considered in high demand.
To explore these professions further, click here.
On a year-to-date basis, retail/wholesale trade continues to be the largest employer on the Island, averaging 11,100.
Working in this industry has its challenges, with openings, some location moves, expansions, and closings. It is challenging for people to see this industry as a full-time career choice because of unpredictable hours, business vulnerabilities, and limited opportunities for full-time work.
For youth, this is very much a short-term occupation choice. The challenge is to attract youth and get them to successfully connect with employers, since the hiring process is mostly online. Also, many older people with low-level literacy skills work in this sector and face a daunting challenge of connecting with employers with the barriers of not being computer savvy.
Retail is a great starting point to gain experience in customer service, which is a sought after skill and ability that is transferrable to many other career choices.
This is an industry where we have done a number of self-employment articles.
To explore jobs and opportunities in this sector, click here.
We have put a heavy concentration on start-up information, self-employment initiatives, and small business community supports and resources by compiling a complete list of all the resources across PEI, click here.
We have covered a high number of self-employment initiatives in the last few years.
For more information about our coverage, visit www.employmentjourney.com/ and click Self Employment on the menu.
Jobs in tourism are many on PEI. The jobs are not just seasonal. Many are year-round. We write a lot of articles about opportunities in tourism because of the high need for companies to hire the right staff.
The industry provides 15,000 to 17,000 full-time, part-time, seasonal, and year-round jobs, which is equivalent to 7,700 full-time year-round jobs. Categories of work include:
- Accommodations: Housekeeping, front desk, general managers, and supervisors.
- Food & Beverage Services: Servers, bartenders, line cooks, chefs, kitchen staff, front end workers, supervisors and managers
- Travel Services: Visitor information counsellors and tour guides
- Transportation: Ferry boat captains, airport, taxi drivers, and motor coach drivers
- Recreation & Entertainment: Golf courses, bike rentals, outdoor adventures, and cultural events.
Tourism is the largest employer in rural PEI. As well, tourism is the biggest employer of youth on PEI. It’s often one of the first jobs for youth, which helps them develop essential skills for future careers. In addition, the seasonal aspect of the employment works well for them.
Housekeepers, line cooks, and prep cooks are all jobs that are in high demand. Transportation jobs tend to attract more mature workers. Many workers in transportation are due to retire soon, leading to more job opportunities. In addition, outdoor adventure tourism has the potential for a lot of growth, and could be a source for more jobs.
To explore further, click here
Brian Oulton, Executive Director of the PEI Trucking Sector Council, says there is such a demand for long-haul truck drivers and mechanics in this field, and as a result, trucks are left idle because the labour force is not in place.
Examples of careers in trucking:
- Truck Driver
- Heavy Equipment Mechanic
- Freight Broker
- Driver Trainer
- Parts Technician
- Safety and Compliance
- Human Resources
“Trucking is a growth industry,” says Brian. “The only thing stopping us from growing is people. Across Canada, there will be a need for 30,000 or more drivers and thousands more in private fleets in the next five to seven years.”
Brian is also very willing to visit employment groups in the communities to tell them more about the great opportunities in the trucking sector. As well, we promote their information sessions, which are held each month.
To explore further, click here.
To visit The Employment Journey Sector/Industry page, click here.
How to get started
To find services and programs to help you sort through all of the career options on PEI and to explore the ones that stand out for you, click here.
Getting a handle on the hiring trends across Canada and much more job news
Reports & Trends
The links below lead to reports, briefs and other types of trends documents of interest to those in career development. The content is divided into 25 thematic categories. A description of the type of material included in each category appears at the top of each directory page. Please note that, as some materials may touch upon several topics, content may appear in more than one category.
A description of the type of content that appears in each thematic category can be accessed by clicking on the link.
Canada's best jobs and employers 2018
What Canadian employers are looking for
Nine high paying jobs for career changers
by Elizabeth Bromstein, February 8, 2016
So, you’re 45, and you’re thinking “What am I going to do with my life?” It happens. The first career didn’t work out, or you just never got around to getting serious.
Second, and even third careers are going to become more common as the employment landscape continues to shift. Careers no longer follow the same linear trajectory they once did, so where we will all find ourselves in our 50s and 60s is anyone’s guess. Back in school or starting over? Why not.
If you’re thinking of making a midlife career shift, here are some good options. I chose jobs that do not require advanced degrees, most of which are projected to show a lot of growth* – so the jobs will be available. And they all pay, in the upper salary range, more than $90,000**. I hope you find your dream job here.
Salary: $35,360 – $106,995
Job prospects for accountants are good. Millions of people out there don’t want to do their own taxes. Depending on the job, you may need a membership in a professional association. You will also need a bachelor’s degree in accounting, accounting science or business administration, a university certificate in accounting or administration, or a diploma of collegial studies (DEC) in accounting and management technology.[Accounting and Finance jobs on Workopolis]
Market research analyst
Salary: $35,360 – $109,990
This job is showing big projected growth but it’s not an easier one to break into. You would have to work your way up to this position through other jobs in the market research sector but if you have a keen analytical mind this could be a great goal for you. You’ll need a minimum of a bachelor’s degree in business, mathematics, or the sciences.[Market research jobs on Workopolis]
Salary: $39,998 – $100,006
Software developer was named the best job in America for 2014 by News & World Report on its annual list of greatest jobs. According to that report, software developers made a median salary of $90,060 in 2012, and the highest-paid 10% made $138,880. They say you’ll need a bachelor’s degree in something like computer science, but the rare programming whiz out there won’t have to get one. The projected growth is much better than average.[Software developer jobs on Workopolis]
Salary: $30,617 – $85,800 – but I know writers who make six figures.
It’s not the easiest way to make money but demand for writers grows as demand for web content grows, and if you’re good, you will get paid and you will find an audience. Writers are no longer at the mercy of magazines and book publishers anymore. You can create your own platform and do your own marketing. You can become an expert in a field, or you can write for websites and, yes, magazines. It’s a hustle and it’s hard. But some people do very well.[Writing jobs on Workopolis]
Salary: $44,803 – $150,009
You need one of those mathematical minds for this one but if you’ve missed your calling, actuarial jobs pay very well and are seeing big growth. You’ll also need a bachelor’s degree in an area such as actuarial science, computer science, economics, or statistics, though beanactuary.com says, it is also “not unusual for candidates with degrees in liberal arts, education, or other disciplines to land a position provided they have proven ability to pass exams and good computer skills.”[Actuary jobs on Workopolis]
Salary: Listed at $38,903 – $82,286 – though chefs can reportedly make over $100,000
This one isn’t growing as fast as some of the others but the food world is so exciting right now. How can a devoted foodie resist? High school may be required, along with trade certification – required in every province – management training and lots of experience. I hear there is lots of yelling in kitchens and that chef is a surprisingly high-stress job that not everyone is cut out for.[Executive chef jobs on Workopolis]
Salary: $30,732 – $94,228
Job prospects for court reporters are good in Canada. You will need to attend a court reporting program, which takes approximately two years. Court reporters must be able to type at a speed of at least 225 words per minute with near 100% accuracy on a steno machine. There are only two court reporting schools in Canada that have been registered by the National Court Reporters Association: the CCVS, in Toronto, Ontario, and the Northern Alberta Institute of Technology, in Edmonton, Alberta.
Salary: $24,626 – $105,100 (but some good realtors make a lot more than that)
Realtor is such a common second career it’s a bit of a cliché, but you can do really well selling houses (thought the projected growth is only so so). According to the Economic Research Institute, realtors make an estimated average of $55,000 a year in Toronto, and $52,000 in Vancouver. “That seems low,” says the Globe and Mail, “but it’s because many agents are part-time.” Commercial agents may earn six figures selling one office tower a year. “Licensing requirements vary across Canada, but all provinces and territories require prospective salespeople and brokers to pass a written exam.”[Real estate jobs on Workopolis]
Salary: $45,718 – $90,667
Growth projections for this profession are very good. “Occupational therapists are university educated and complete a minimum of 1000 hours of supervised fieldwork experience (on-the-job training). The accreditation standards set by the Canadian Association of Occupational Therapists (CAOT) accepts the baccalaureate degree in occupational therapy as the minimal educational requirement for entry-level education in Canada.”[Occupational therapist jobs on Workopolis]
*Growth projections are from Service Canada and the Bureau of Labor Statistics
**Salary information is from both Service Canada and Payscale
Workopolis compiled a list of 12 part-time jobs that pay well.
Some examples include dog walker, fitness instructor and social media strategist.
Read more at www.careers.workopolis.com.
Career trends over the next five, 10 years
When it comes to landing a job, digital literacy is the new literacy, and eight jobs will always be in demand. These points come from a recent Thinkopolis report.
Read more at www.careers.workopolis.com.
As a career planner/job seeker you need to track Labour Market Information – see why…
Understanding Labour Market Information – Careers.nova scotia.ca has done a wonderful job of explaining the value of understanding what LMI is and how to track it and make it work for you.
LMI helps to make good decisions about your education, your career, your workplace, your community, and your life.
What is Labour Market Information (LMI)?
Labour Market Information includes facts about employers and people working or looking for work.
This information could be about jobs, occupations, trades, job skills required for various trades or occupations, industries, education and training programs, or apprenticeships. It could also include data from surveys conducted by various organizations, or research about trends in the job market.
Labour Market Information can tell you:
- Where the jobs are now;
- Where the jobs are likely going to be in the future;
- What skills are in demand; and
- Which occupations may present more, or fewer, opportunities for work in the future.
Employers create a demand for labour based on economic activity, consumer demand for their products, and other factors. The labour market also evolves over time. LMI can tell us what has happened in the past, what is happening now, and what is likely to happen in the years ahead.
For the complete guide, visit http://careers.novascotia.ca/sites/all/files/14-42520%20LMI%20Career%20Guides%20Eng%20FINAL-s.pdf.
The most in-demand tech skills in Canada job postings
by Peter Harris | November 12, 2015 12:08 pm
For our recent Thinkopolis report on the most sought-after skills by Canadian employers, the team here analyzed millions of job postings. You can read the full report here. One of the trends we noticed over the past year was a rapid increase in software and tech skills being requested in job ads.
This is true for opportunities across sectors, and not just in technology and digital media roles. Keeping up with the trends and technologies of how people communicate and share information is also essential for career success. Once upon a time, reading and writing were considered the basic skills for most jobs. Digital literacy has become the new literacy.
We can see a high level of demand for digital literacy and computer skills in Canadian job postings right now. This is particularly true in the areas of document production, filing and sharing. Among the top skills sought after in job postings are the following collection:
- Microsoft Office, Excel, Word, PowerPoint
- Microsoft Works
- Computer use
Digital literacy is evolving to include more advanced computer skills as well, as among the hottest of the up-and-coming skill requirements appearing in job postings are coding and social media savvy.
Social media skills are becoming essential for an increasingly wide range of roles beyond community managers, including Human Resources, Sales, Designers and Developers, and of course Marketing.
Other hot tech skills for rapidly rising demand:
- Social media platforms
- Big data
- Google Analytics
Specifically for jobs in the technology and digital media field, these are the ten most requested skills in current job descriptions.
- Shell scripting
- Operating systems
- HTML / CSS
- Extensible markup language (XML)
Acquiring some of the most sought-after tech skills can greatly increase the number of jobs you qualify for. But remember that while these credentials are important, employers across the board also say they’re looking for signs of soft skills— abilities that are more interpersonal than technical—for the stand-out candidates they need to hire. “Communications” is the single most sought-after skill in Canadian job postings.
On-The-Job Training: The solution to the skills shortage
Published September 28, 2015
As the economy begins to slowly bounces back, employers are struggling to fill open positions. But it isn’t because there are fewer workers looking for employment – it’s because those workers seeking jobs don’t necessarily have the right skills.
According to a new CareerBuilder.ca survey, half of employers feel there is a shortage of skilled workers in Canada. Due to this skills gap between what employers want and job seekers possess, positions are staying open for extended periods of time: 3 in 10 employers currently have positions in their organization that, on average, stay open for 12 weeks or longer.
With a 7 per cent unemployment rate in Canada, there are plenty of workers available – and willing – to fill open positions. Yet, employers believe that the jobseekers applying for their open vacancies don’t have the right mix of skills. Why? Fifty-two per cent don’t think there are enough workers graduating in in-demand fields, while 48 per cent believe there’s a lack of interest in required fields.
Other reasons employers offered as to what’s causing the skills shortage include: employers and candidates have different expectations (41 per cent), entry-level jobs are becoming more complex (37 per cent), a lack of funding in necessary training (36 per cent), and rapid changes in technology (34 per cent). Thirty-three per cent of employers do cite increased competition for candidates as the cause, showing that the improving economy may be to blame for some of the shortage.
According to the study, of those employers with extended job vacancies, 75 per cent say the openings have adversely affected their organization. Not only does it cost employers money when a position sits open for a long period of time, it can negatively impact the morale and productivity of their staff – and ultimately their bottom line. The top way employers say extended vacancies negatively affect their firm is that work does not get done (31 per cent). Twenty-six per cent cite lower morale due to employees bearing heavier workloads, while 24 per cent say it causes delays in delivery times.
In order to combat the skills shortage, employers have had to take matters into their own hands. Instead of waiting for the worker with the perfect combination of education, background and skills, they are seeing the potential in job seekers who may not be the right fit on paper, but with a little training, could be successful at their organization.
Forty-six per cent of employers say they have hired a low-skilled worker and trained him or her for a higher-skill job within their organizations in the last two years. And employers have reaped benefits from doing so. Some of the positive outcomes of on-the-job training include: increased employee motivation (50 per cent), improved employee loyalty (47 per cent), ability to be more competitive (46 per cent) and ability to meet department goals (41 per cent).
“Companies nationwide are feeling the effect of a skills gap, from lower morale to higher retention rates to a loss of revenue,” says Ryan Lazar, managing director of CareerBuilder Canada. “Our findings indicate, however, that taking proactive efforts to train and reskill workers can go a long way in overcoming these challenges. While we still have a long way to go, the more we can identify the root of these challenges, the more opportunities we will find to bridge this gap.”
Debra Auerbach researches and writes about job search strategy, career management, hiring trends and workplace issues for CareerBuilder.
Salary guide for 2018
Read the full salary guides for 2018 from Robert Half with details on over 500 positions at www.roberthalf.ca/salary-guides.
Transferable Skills in the workplace
When searching for work consider your transferable skills
by Stella Shepard
General skills are learned through previous employment, volunteering, community involvement, hobbies, interests, sports, and family life, and can be transferable to the workplace.
Job seekers can apply their skills in new jobs or when considering a career change. Employers value transferable skills.
Older workers transferable skills
“Having been in the workforce for many years, mature workers bring many transferable skills to new positions,” says Michael Gaudet, who works in program delivery of the Passport to Employment program.
“Most importantly, mature workers, because they have been in the workforce for a long time, are most aware of the importance of the essential skills necessary for employment. They have a better understanding of the importance of customer service, and are less prone to excuses.”
Michael says each and every job undertaken is an opportunity for learning, and many of these skills are transferable to other jobs. “For example, patience, listening, cooperation, and team work are transferable skills developed when learning a highly technical skill.”
For more information about the Passport to Employment program, contact Michael Gaudet at 902-620-3436 or email [email protected].
Youth transferable skills
“The first transferable skill that comes to mind in regard to youth is technical literacy,” says Scott Wilson, Program Coordinator at East Prince Youth Development Centre (EPYDC). “Most youth are comfortable with technology of various types, and they are also quick to catch on to new types of hardware and software.Youth should list this skill on their resumé.
“I also see time management and prioritizing skills in youth today. Many youth are juggling quite a load. In addition to school, they are involved in sports, part-time work, and have an active social life. Some do very well managing all their various activities.
Transferable skills employers look for
The following employers have listed the transferable skills that are important to their place of work:
Morely Annear Ltd., Scott Annear, General Manager
- Good verbal communication skills
- Good customer service skills
- Good literacy skills
Myers Industries Inc., Clinton Myers: Co-owner and Operational Manager
- Dependability and flexibility
- Previous employment in a physically demanding environment
- Having a good attitude within the workplace
- Being a team player. Don’t say it’s not my job
- Good verbal, written, comprehension and communication skills.
Dianne Taylor, Co-owner of Island Taylored Meats Corp.
“Last year, we hired a mature worker and it worked out great because of transferable skills they brought from their previous work experience,” says Dianne.
“Last year, we also hired a young man who had transferable skills from working in the blueberry industry that enabled him to meet the physical demands of working in production.”
Boomerswork.com expands to PEI
by Gloria Welton
Boomerswork.com specializes in matching retired professionals who are interested in part-time or short-term work with employers looking for top talent.
The company is based in Halifax and has now has expanded the service to PEI.“I am the poster child for this service on PEI, because I recently retired,” says Heather Tedford.
“While not looking to return to work full-time, I was interested in working part-time and willing to help a business expand to PEI by providing my years of experience.”
Heather has an extensive background in Sales and Marketing. “Over the years, my career included General Sales Manager for a radio group. Most recently, I was Director of Sales and Marketing for Transcontinental Media PEI and publisher of G Magazine.
“I had a great career and enjoyed it immensely. Now I am retired and enjoying that immensely, but I am very willing to participate in meaningful part-time projects with flexible schedules.
“With Boomerswork.com, not only am I involved in meaningful work, I am here to help companies fill their employment gaps by matching them with a person with the experience they need. We make sure that the right talent finds the right opportunity.”
For the job seeker
Work choices range from a few weeks to several months. The company matches experienced professionals with opportunities in the following fields:
- Accounting and Finance
- Human Resources
- Sales and Marketing
- Construction Management
- General Management
- Information Technology Management
The first step for the job seeker is to create a free Boomerswork account and profile. “We use the information to match the job seeker to relevant job opportunities that employers are looking to fill,” says Heather.
For the employer
“Our clients are employers who turn to us when they have a unique business challenge that would benefit from the experience of a seasoned professional, but does not require a full-time hire,” says Heather. “We find employees who have the experience to hit the ground running.”
Using this service means businesses can avoid the traditional approaches that often attract a number of applicants without the required skill sets. “We turn to our database and select candidates who match the criteria. The company then interviews and selects the candidate who best suits their needs.
“Businesses on PEI are already saying they are interested, so this is very encouraging. As a person who formally interviewed people to fill many positions over the years, I quickly recognized how valuable this service would be to businesses.”
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