Record Jobs Growth and Vacancies in Canada Call for Future-Forward Thinking: Could These Solutions Work?
Dominic Labrie, from our team, recently attended an event hosted by the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Quebec (CCIQ) which dove into emerging jobs market needs in Quebec. Below, he shares his key takeaways that are relevant not only in Quebec but in other provinces too.
On a national scale, the media including the CBC reported recently that Canada added 150,000 jobs in the last month alone. This figure was 10 times higher than what economists had predicted.
This trend is reflected in the Quebec market too. According to the Institute of Statistics Quebec, the number of jobs in Quebec increased by 129,700 in 2022, compared to 2021. Job vacancies also rose by a record 25 per cent, to 241,700 year-over-year.
In this context, let’s consider the fact that more than 85% of French-speaking Canadians live in Quebec. If we thought the Bilingual/French recruitment landscape was competitive before – imagine how these never-before-seen vacancies are putting added strain on clients trying to fill vacant Bilingual/French positions.
This means, organizations who want to serve all of Canada with Bilingual/French talent must innovate, re-imagine, and re-invigorate their recruitment strategies, now more than ever.
So what was on the minds of the CCIQ event’s speakers? The themes of the day covered everything from cultivating innovation, to artificial intelligence (AI), to tapping into immigrant populations. As I was mining for words of wisdom that could help all of us across the country, here is what I found:
- Transparency and trust keep employees in their jobs: During a panel on innovation, expert guests were discussing the need for organizations to prioritize modernization. Old school norms of need-to-know hierarchies for information dissemination, and keeping budget numbers and financials confidential among leadership, are harming many businesses. Employees today are weary of being loaded with more to-do focused responsibilities. Businesses need to evolve by treating their staff as more than employees. Do you see your team as associates who are considered valued and vital-to-the-business? Then prove it. Employees want to know exactly where their company is in terms of business or organizational performance. They don’t just want to work on the business, they want to be a part of the business.
- Re-framing business leaders’ views on cultivating innovation: This quote from the day’s discussions on AI really stood out: “People think innovation is about technology, but it’s about people.” Many workers today are not keen on embracing AI for fear that it will take human work hours (and the salaries that go with them) away. There is a need for better communications with today’s workforce (and organizational commitments) that if AI can reduce workload for employees, that “saved time” will be re-invested into employees to pursue new innovations for the employer, and then to fulfill new responsibilities – e.g. in sales growth, innovation, product or service development, etc.
- Engage employees anonymously when seeking innovation: One speaker emphasized how innovation can come from any one at any level of a business. Too often, the responsibility to cultivate innovation rests with management. The adage: “There are no bad ideas in a brainstorm” should be a norm in the workplace. However, wildly creative or far-reaching ideas (where seeds of innovation often lie) are often immediately discounted in social settings, where others have the opportunity to shoot down what doesn’t resonate with them, and where peers may be inclined to agree. Some companies today are giving employees a chance to share their insights, views, opinions and potential new solutions completely anonymously. This strategy can encourage introverts to share their thoughts too, which can be more difficult in open settings.
- More recruitment strategies are focusing in on selling through the promise of a better “quality of life” in local communities: The CCIQ’s special guest, Jonatan Julien, M.N.A. Minister of Infrastructure, and Minister responsible for the Capitale-Nationale region, shared how Quebec City is planning to entice immigrants to move to Quebec City. This is one of its strategies to tackle real local job market challenges. It is part of a growing trend we are seeing in recruitment that is taking a macro-approach to a local area’s job vacancies. It focuses on pitching not only job opportunities, but also the quality of life that prospective jobseekers and their families can enjoy. The minister also noted, this work zooms in on inclusion strategies too, promoting how friendly Quebec City residents are.
No matter how challenging Bilingual/French recruitment can appear, at BlueSky Personnel Solutions, we believe today’s disruptive times of change will yield great, positive gains for all Canadians soon enough. Our fullest potential for growth both in the workplace and as a society lies not in technology, AI, or finding innovation, it lies in how our human capital can harness these fantastic new tools.
This also means the recruitment industry will have a deeper impact in the coming years. As passionate recruiters, we’re excited and ready for it.
If you need exceptional Bilingual/French talent to grow your business, contact our team at BlueSky Personnel Solutions today. We are networked with the best talent in the marketplace from coast to coast and it would be our pleasure to serve you: (416) 236-3303, [email protected].