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Posts from the ‘Industry News & Trends’ Category

The State of Canada’s Skills Gap

As the baby boomer generation reaches retirement and the technology sector continues to grow, the labour market is undergoing a dramatic transformation. The skills gap in the labour market created by these changes has made it clear that to remain globally competitive, we need to address the growing skills gap.

Although the unemployment rate has recently dropped to its lowest point in 40 years, candidates still lack the skills to meet changing labour demands, especially as automation revolutionizes the labour market by replacing much of the repetitive, manual work currently performed by humans, and as technology creates new jobs in completely new sectors. These joint developments point to an increasingly mismatched labour market, where the workers displaced by automation are unable to move into new jobs created by technological advancements because they don’t have the new skills required.

With one estimate of Ontario’s lost potential GDP at $24 billion (which is worth about 4% of that province’s total GDP), it’s clear that the costs of leaving the skills gap unaddressed are significant. So how do we work towards shrinking it?

Increased collaboration

One way is to start with the workers of tomorrow. In their 2016 report Strengthening Ontario’s Workforce for the Jobs of Tomorrow, the Human Resources Professionals Association (HRPA) points to the need for more comprehensive data collection and reporting on labour market trends to enable students to make better-informed decisions about their fields of study based on current and future in-demand occupations.

While many of HRPA’s recommendations require government action, the report highlights the role of collaboration between industry and educational institutions to help bridge the skills gap of the future. Through outreach programs and workforce development initiatives such as internships, co-op placements and apprenticeship programs, organizations can help guide students and young workers into occupations that are in-demand.

Retraining the workforce

When it comes to today’s workforce, it’s important to recognize the role that lifelong learning plays in maintaining competitiveness. As technological innovation changes the skills demanded — and as the emergence of freelancers and the gig economy puts pressure on traditional employment models — businesses will have to respond quickly to keep their workforces competitive.

One way is to consider free online courses or microlearning applications to make the most of your employees’ time and your budget. You might even consider partnering with a local educational institution to offer accredited training programs to train your most motivated employees with the specific skills your business needs. With so many training opportunities available for different needs at various price points, it’s both cost-effective and incredibly easy to introduce these options to your employees.

Culture shift

Underlying the above suggestions is the necessity of reorienting employee development as a competitive advantage. As shifts in technology rapidly change the skills employers require, continual skills upgrading becomes a necessity. As a result, a business that is seen to prioritize education can attract top talent who are intrinsically motivated to stay ahead of the curve.

Looking for some assistance filling those challenging positions? Let our recruitment consultants help! With access to some of the best talent in the country, combined with thousands of free training resources, let us provide you with the best candidate to complete your workforce!

Lēad Blog is part of Adecco and Roevin Canada. Hire your perfect team, or get more staffing advice from our experts.

 

The Rise of 3D Printing

3D printing is becoming increasingly common and revolutionizing the Canadian market. With this new industrial revolution, Canadians can expect to see some changes to the labour market as we rely less on outsourcing production to other countries.

Though 3D printing has been around for over 30 years, its progression has been slow. The concept was originated as a toy, developed into a prototype and only recently, considered a solution for cost effective production. 3D printing is finally set to revolutionize the way we produce, with implications on where, how and when we manufacture.

A shift in manufacturing roles

Although the emergence of 3D printing will potentially reduce the requirement for certain manufacturing roles, it will result in the creation of new technical and creative roles. 3D printing will lead to a multitude of new, skilled positions including technicians, engineers and creative/graphic designers — creating an even greater need for applicants in the STEM related fields. 

Production assistance

There are many positives that cannot be ignored, including reducing costs, increasing opportunities and encouraging innovation. With factories pairing 3D printing technology with traditional manufacturing processes to accommodate custom and on demand production, many industries have reaped the benefits, such as: healthcare, consumer goods, aerospace, architecture, automotive and government, military and academic institutions.

Inventory management

The evolution of 3D printing enables companies to only produce goods when needed. Businesses no longer need to keep a large inventory on hand to prepare for an order, instead, this technology now allows them to produce on demand — which helps to reduce inventory management costs and store the product digitally instead of physically. Not to mention, as 3D printing relies on additive manufacturing, layering thin layers of materials atop one another to create the final object, the waste generally associated to traditional production is virtually non-existent!

The rise of a new industry

With 3D printing evolving into an industrial staple, a new budding industry is on the rise. As with the conception of any new industry, there is a boost to the economy as new businesses fill specialized, as well as professional positions, furnish office spaces and set logistical contracts. Ultimately this process benefits the surrounding economy and applicable industries.

In 2013, President Obama referenced 3D printing in his State of the Union address as having the potential to revolutionize the way we make everything. As the reliance on this technology grows, so will the positive impact on our economy. With companies less likely to outsource production to countries with cheap labour, 3D printing has the potential to increase Canadian production and efficiencies, while contributing to a labour market growth.

 

Lēad Blog is part of Adecco and Roevin Canada. Hire your perfect team, or get more staffing advice from our experts.

 

Staffing Trends

Here at Adecco, we are focused on staying up-to-date with evolving staffing trends. Heavily influenced by technology and cost-saving efforts, the recruitment industry is always changing. To help you navigate this environment, keep reading for a roundup of some recent and relevant staffing trends in Canada.

Employer Branding

With increased competition to attract and retain top talent, employer branding can take companies to the next level. According to a recent LinkedIn report, talent acquisition leaders broadly agree that employer branding is an important factor in their recruitment efforts.[i] And because candidates can afford to be selective about which companies they choose, company culture messaging is essential in capturing a potential candidate’s attention.

Social Recruiting

Employers are leveraging online professional networking sites like LinkedIn to appeal to their target candidate demographics. These sites facilitate online recruitment efforts and provide effective ways of engaging potential candidates to evaluate fit prior to the interview stage. Social networking sites have also proven to be a successful component of an employer branding strategy, giving users the opportunity to market the organization, as well as open positions to candidate pools.

Candidate Screening

With evolving technology, employers can now rely on automated screening methods to facilitate the hiring process. Algorithms and artificial intelligence help recruiters filter candidates efficiently, ensuring that every candidate being interviewed is equipped with the skills required for the role. These tools allow employers to focus on the best fit for their corporate culture, while saving them the time and energy of manually sifting through numerous applications.

On-Demand Workforce

The growing trend of an on-demand workforce enables employers to scale their workforce up or down to flexibly meet the demands of short-term requirements or rapid business shifts. It’s expected that by 2020 almost half of Canada’s working population will be self-employed.[ii] This model offers benefits to both employees, who have the flexibility to set their own schedule and rates, and employers, who can save the added cost of benefits, paid vacation, pension and more.

Recruitment Process Outsourcing

Don’t have the resources to recruit internally? You’re not alone! Many companies with a small or non-existent HR department rely on outsourcing their recruitment process. This could be in the form of consulting a headhunter to tackle your hiring needs, or working with an employment agency to assist in recruitment efforts big or small.

Keeping up-to-date with current staffing trends can help ensure your recruitment efforts yield optimal results. At Adecco, recruiting is our business.  We can help you respond to these trends or fill those challenging roles, so contact your local Adecco branch today and speak to a qualified Recruitment Consultant.

To view more of our blogs and articles, visit our Employer resources page on our website.


[i] U.S and Canada Recruiting Trends 2017 – What you need to know about the state of talent acquisition. LinkedIn https://business.linkedin.com/content/dam/me/business/en-us/talent-solutions/resources/pdfs/us-and-canada-recruiting-trends-2017.pdf

[ii] Intuit says 45% of Canadians will be self-employed by 2020 releases new app to help with finances. Financial Post http://business.financialpost.com/technology/personal-tech/intuit-says-45-of-canadians-will-be-self-employed-by-2020-releases-new-app-to-help-with-finances

 

Cannabis and the Impact on Employee Health

With legislation set to pass and legalize cannabis, the intricacies of its usage may change. To keep health and safety at the forefront in the workplace, employers will need to set clear boundaries regarding its use.

Although consumption of cannabis during work hours for medical purposes is not a new phenomenon, recreational use has the potential to affect an employee’s health, and, the health and safety of a company’s workforce.

Use in the workplace

The Ontario Human Rights Code (OHRC) extends to allow disabled workers the use of medical cannabis when prescribed. Although under this act, employers must accommodate these workers, this code does not permit the worker to be impaired at work or endanger their safety or the safety of others.[i] Should a worker show signs of marijuana impairment, an employer must assign the individual tasks considered safe. For recreational users, employers still hold the right to set rules for the non-medical use of marijuana in the same manner they set alcohol consumption restrictions. Increasingly, employers will need to prioritize their workplace policies and clearly outline and communicate their policy regarding the recreational use of cannabis during work hours.

Employee health and safety

Similar to alcohol, the effects of cannabis will vary from person to person. The THC in marijuana can affect coordination, reaction time, focus, decision making abilities and perception.[ii] This means that there may be potential effects on an employee’s body, brain and overall mental state. For that reason, cannabis consumption in the workplace can be particularly dangerous for employees in fields like construction and manufacturing — or any position requiring the operation of a vehicle or heavy machinery. To prepare for its changing legal status, employers should revisit drug workplace policies to identify whether a change is required to reflect the change in legislation, in addition to outlining disciplinary action for substance abuse in the workplace.

Benefit plans

With more recognizable medical benefits and the normalization of cannabis as a treatment option for symptoms ranging from arthritis to cancer, the number of medical marijuana patients across Canada nearly doubled by the end of September 2017; reaching more than 235,000.[iii] As this number continues to grow, so does the pressure on benefit providers to include cannabis coverage in their health plans. Sun Life is the first provider to accommodate, providing members with the option to add medical cannabis coverage only for set conditions and symptoms. With the pending legalization, it is only a matter of time before other benefit providers follow suit and normalize cannabis coverage options.

The changing legal status of recreational cannabis use will undoubtedly impact the workplace in its early stages. With clear boundaries and rules in place surrounding the recreational use of cannabis, employers can mitigate any potential issues and maintain a happy, healthy workforce.

To view more of our blogs and articles, visit our Employer resources page on our website.


[i] https://www.pshsa.ca/cannabis-in-the-workplace/

[ii] https://www.canada.ca/content/dam/hc-sc/documents/services/campaigns/27-16-1808-Factsheet-Health-Effects-eng-web.pdf

[iii] http://business.financialpost.com/news/fp-street/sun-life-financial-to-add-medical-pot-option-to-group-benefits-plans

 

Cannabis – A Shift in Perception

With the legalization of cannabis only a couple months away, many Canadians still have reservations about its accessibility and the effects its consumption will have on the workplace.

In the past few years, Canadians have experienced a growing reliance on the use of cannabis for medicinal purposes. Its usage for treatment of pain, relief of cancer symptoms, and epilepsy has paved the way for the legalization of cannabis and has slowly altered the way the general public perceives the historically illegal substance.

Though studies show the majority of Canadians agree with its legalization[i], recreational use of cannabis still has its critics. Here, we examine three areas of concern related to the legalization of cannabis and its impact on the workplace.

Managing a “high” workplace

Though employers must accommodate employees who have prescriptions to use medicinal marijuana, the imminent legalization of cannabis brings up concerns about controlling recreational use at work. Employers have the right to set limitations on the consumption of cannabis on work property in line with a drug-free workplace policy. The policy should outline disciplinary action for offenders in attempts to prohibit impairment on the job.

Managing the credibility of employers and employees

Regardless of the pending legalization, or the use of cannabis for medicinal purposes, there is still a stigma surrounding the consumption of cannabis. Once legal, employers should make attempts to change policy vocabulary. For example,  the substance should no longer be defined as “illegal” to recognize the legislated reality and to help shift perceptions away from traditionally negative views of recreational consumption by employees.

Negotiating differences in perceptions across demographics

Cannabis purchases vary based on demographics, with 25-44 year-olds accounting for 40% of the purchases while the 45-64 year-old group accounts for only 23% of cannabis purchases.[ii] Though this number has grown, the large gap in consumption between the age groups indicates greater acceptance towards cannabis from the 25-44 year-old demographic. By instituting a drug-free workplace policy, employers can accommodate the varying perceptions of cannabis across your workforce.

Regardless of the varied perceptions, the legalization of cannabis is imminent, and with it, proposed preventative measures instituting proper control of substance distribution and consumption will be introduced that seek to allay negative perceptions of the legalization of cannabis. Employers can also respond to shifting perceptions with clear workplace policies for their employees.

To view more of our blogs and articles, visit our Employer resources page on our website.


For more information on how this budding industry will affect organizational policy and job opportunities, stay tuned to our series examining the legalization of cannabis in Canada.

[i] http://www.macleans.ca/society/majority-of-canadians-support-marijuana-legalization-says-survey/

[ii] http://business.financialpost.com/commodities/agriculture/canadians-spent-c5-7-billion-on-cannabis-in-2017-statistics-canada

 

2017 Trends and the Impact on Workforce Compensation

Staying up-to-date with current marketplace and compensation trends has become increasingly important in light of many of the labour market changes that have occurred, and are still ahead.

This year brought a rise in Canadian employment. According to Statistics Canada’s October 2017 Labour Force Survey, on a year-over-year basis, total employment rose by 308,000 (+1.7%), with full-time work increasing by 397,000 (+2.7%) and the number of people working part time declining by 89,000 (-2.5%). On a year-over-year basis, total hours worked were up 2.7%.

It is undeniable that 2017 has brought much change to Canada’s labour market. From increasing pressure to raise minimum wage, the evolution of Bill 148 in Ontario, developments in globalization, potential changes in NAFTA, and the rise of virtual workers- the intricacies related to the manner in which we work, and are compensated have been impacted.

Change in Minimum Wage
October 1, 2017 marked the fourth consecutive year of minimum wage increases. Minimum wage now ranges from $10.35 to $13.60 across Canada. With continuing pressure to increase the minimum wage as high as $15/hour by 2019, as an employer, it’s essential to assess your current staffing levels and create a compensation strategy that works with the inevitable labour cost increases.

Bill 148 – Fair Workplaces Better Jobs Act

Bill 148 has now passed third reading which means that it is in the final stages of being enacted into law.  It will cause substantial changes to compensation and staffing requirements in Ontario. The impetus for this change is the influx of economic change within society has put an economic strain on Ontario households.[1]

Amongst the list of items, this bill will:

  • Increase the minimum wage to $15/hour by 2019
  • Require equal pay for full-time, part-time, contract, temporary and seasonal labour
  • Provide for scheduling, vacation and personal emergency leave entitlements

Economists predict a minimum wage increase to $15/hour will create a ripple effect for employees who already earn wages in that bracket. Also, the increase in wage means employers will pay more for items calculated as a percentage of pay, such as, payroll, taxes, CPP, EI, benefits and company pension attributions.

Globalization

Globalization is a trend that has influenced the Canadian Manufacturing sector for many years. Tariff Reductions, Free Trade Agreements and, reductions in transportation and communication costs, have fueled the growth of this trend.[2] Manufacturing industries within Canada have faced intense international competition, especially from imports from low-wage developing countries. The 2017 increase in minimum wage, and the potential minimum wage increase only widens this gap in competition – making it difficult for Canadian manufacturing companies to compete.

In addition, the internet, technology and computer networking facilitates the outsourcing of other employment sectors such as Business, IT and Customer Service. As an example, it isn’t uncommon to contact a Canadian company’s help desk and be assisted by a representative in another country.

The increase in these globalization trends continues to affect the Canadian marketplace, and inevitably, the workforce’s compensation in these sectors.

The Re-Negotiation of NAFTA

The 2017 administration change in the United States brought the imminent re-negotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement. A result that has brought the possibility of increased border taxes on goods imported to the United States. This pending change would have a huge impact on how Canadians trade, forcing us to consider trade options with Europe and Asia, and, putting Canadian Businesses in direct competition with American business.[3]

The Rise of Virtual Workers

One growing trend in the 2017 Canadian labour market is the rise of virtual workers. The global digital marketplace for workers, with online platforms such as Freelancer.com and UpWork, allow candidates from all over the world to create profiles, advertise their skills and bid on work. This trend is causing the dissemination of a variety of traditional labour positions such as administrative assistants, copywriters and marketing assistants. Employers are now able to source out projects to these sites where the cost of labour is cheaper – ultimately increasing their bottom line and affecting compensation.

Need help building a compensation plan that considers trends? Not a problem, we’ve done it for you! Adecco’s 2018 Compensation Guide provides insights into Canadian compensation data that’s segmented by role, province and company size.

Contact your local Adecco branch to receive your complimentary copy of our 2018 Compensation guide. Stay tuned for the digital version coming out in early December.

For more information and articles, visit our Employer resources page on our website.


Sources:

[1] Bill 148: Fair Workplaces, Better Jobs Act, 2017, September 2017

http://www.occ.ca/wp-content/uploads/2013/05/Proposed-Changes-to-Ontarios-Employment-and-Labour-Laws-CANCEA-Final-September-2017.pdf

[2] The Changing Workplaces Review – Final Report – Chapter 3, May 2017

https://www.ontario.ca/document/changing-workplaces-review-final-report/chapter-3-changing-pressures-and-trends

[3] Labour Force Survey, October 2017
https://www.statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/171103/dq171103a-eng.htm?HPA=1