What is a bioscience company?
Answer: A company engaged in the research, development, and commercialization of bioactive-based human, animal, and fish health and nutrition products.
On PEI, about 58 bioscience companies work in some of the following areas: human, animal, fish health, or medical and diagnostic services.
Over 1,700 people are employed in careers such as scientist, quality control/assurance, engineering, production, and business administration.
“We are now seeing other industries overlapping into the bioscience economy, such as medical cannabis, digital health and artificial intelligence, and bioremediation,” says Rob Henderson, President and CEO, BioTalent Canada, based in Ottawa.
“Employment opportunities are increasing across the country. BioTalent Canada’s key mission is to work with private and public-sector partners to identify and address skills gaps.
“We promote innovation and human resources best practices to make the bio-economy a career of choice for job seekers and a driver of the Canadian economy.”
A recent national survey reported the following statistics:
- 76 percent of employers look for new hires with interpersonal and communication skills
- 50-plus percent of companies report finding skills deficiencies in current staff
- 40 percent of those companies say these skills shortages have a major impact on current business operations.
Rob says as a result of their research, the focus for this year will be on the development of essential skills training, national labour market intelligence, National Occupational Standards, and a student work placement project.
In particular, it has been indicated that graduates in this sector need support with technical skills such as:
- General lab experience
- Report writing
- Basic statistics
- Health & Safety
In addition, graduates and employees need support with softs skills such as:
- Writing and communicating
- Task and time management
To address essential skills issues, BioTalent Canada plans to provide online training modules in English and French. “Our team will also go across the country, offering training to smaller bioscience companies to help support their staff. We believe this need for skills development is not unique to this sector. Every sector suffers from the lack of various essential skills.”
The organization produces a national compensation guide as well as The PetriDish™, Canada’s only national bilingual biotechnology job board, where PEI BioAlliance members each receive five free postings.
For more information, visit www.biotalent.ca/the-petridish.
“We are also working with the federal government on youth unemployment. About 16 to 18 percent of new college and university graduates are unemployed. We want to take every opportunity to see that employers and potential candidates find their match.
“Over the next few years, BioTalent Canada plans to conduct a widespread study of bioscience companies across Canada to look into details such as hiring needs, the supply of talent, and emerging human resources trends in the industry.
“Our overarching mission is to work with partners in each province to ensure bioscience companies have employees who are job-ready.”
For more information about BioTalent Canada, visit www.biotalent.ca.
For more information about the Bioscience sector on PEI, call 902-367-4400.