Job vacancies in Canada hit record high in 2022

Canada Jobs
  • June 28, 2022

According to Statistics Canada, the number of job vacancies in Canada climbed to 957,500 in the first quarter, the highest quarterly number ever.

Comparatively, there are more than 401,900 vacancies compared to the first quarter of 2020, an increase of more than 72%. Nearly 3% more job vacancies occurred in Q1 2022 as compared to Q4 2021, which represented 24,900 more vacant positions.

Here is a list of sector-wise vacancies growth in 2022

  • With 136,800 vacancies, the health care and social assistance sector reached another all-time high. Labour shortages in this sector were high before the pandemic, but COVID-19 pushed up demand even further. A 91% increase in vacancies (65,100 positions) was recorded in the first quarter of 2022 over the first quarter of 2020.
  • Vacancies in the construction sector are also at a record high. In Q1, Canadian construction employers were seeking to fill 81,500 vacant positions. Construction employment rose by over 7% (5,400 positions) in Q4 2021 compared to Q4 2021.
  • Manufacturing and retail trade continue to see an increase in job vacancies. The number of manufacturing job openings peaked at 87,400 last quarter, while retail trade employers sought 114,600 positions.
  • In terms of professional, scientific, and technical services, little has changed. The number of jobs in this sector was 68,800, little changed from the record high achieved last quarter.
  • A total of 133,800 positions were vacant in the accommodation and food services sector in the first quarter. Although the number was large, it had actually declined by about 12% from the previous quarter.

Canadian provinces have different ratios of unemployment to job vacancies. Québec and British Columbia had fewer than one unemployed person for every job opening, while Newfoundland and Labrador had more than four unemployed people for every vacancy. A lower ratio indicates a tighter labour market and possible labour shortages.

There are significant challenges facing Canadian employers when it comes to hiring. Nearly 34 new employees were hired for every 100 job vacancies in the first quarter. Compared to the first quarter of last year, there were 48 new hires per 100 vacancies, and 82 in the first quarter of 2016, when comparable data became available.

According to industry statistics, employers hired about 23 new employees for every 100 vacancies in the accommodation and food services sector. The health care and social assistance sectors also hired 23. The professional, scientific, and technical services sectors employed about 50.

According to the Canadian Survey on Business Conditions from January 4 to February 7, recruiting skilled employees was expected to be an obstacle for nearly two-fifths of businesses, and retaining employees was expected to be an obstacle for about 30%.

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