Last week, we wrote about growing reports of a skills mismatch in Canada between job seekers and employers.
On Monday, CIBC deputy chief economist Benjamin Tal added details on just which occupations he is seeing the greatest amount of skills shortages and surpluses.
The study comes amid debate in the United States over the degree to which its labour market is facing structural unemployment (or joblessness sparked by shifts in demand that cause skills mismatches). Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago president Charles Evans told The Globe last week there’s “not a lot of evidence” of structural unemployment, though some skills in areas such as engineering may be a little harder to find.
In Canada, more companies, particularly in Alberta, are reporting skills shortages.
Across the country, traditional occupations “like butchers, bakers, tailors, labourers in manufacturing, office managers and clerks are showing signs of labour surplus,” along with elementary and secondary school teachers, the CIBC analysis shows.
Meantime, job areas that are showing signs of skills shortages include “many positions in traditional health care roles, such as doctors, nurses and dentists,” along with optometrists and chiropractors. Other areas include mining, engineering and science.
Mr. Tal produced the list of shortages by looking at the occupations that are seeing both rapidly rising wages and low or falling jobless rates. These occupations comprise 21 per cent of employment in Canada. He produced the list of jobs with surpluses by examining occupations that have decelerating wage growth and high or rising jobless rates. This pool accounts for 16 per cent of total unemployment.
A report last week by Hays Canada found skills shortages in the country are not acute. By its measure – which looks at wage pressures and labour market flexibility -- Canada scores 5.6 on a 10-point scale. A score above the mid-point of 5 suggests employers are having difficulties finding the key skills they need, while a score below 5 shows a slack labour market in which there are no major constraints on the supply of skilled labour.
Here is CIBC’s full list of 25 occupations showing signs of a skills shortage:
Managers in engineering, architecture, science & info systems
Managers in health, education, social and community services
Managers in construction and transportation
Auditors, accountants and investment professionals
Human resources and business service professionals
Professional occupations in natural and applied sciences
Physical science professionals
Life science professionals
Civil, mechanical, electrical and chemical Engineers
Professional occupations in health
Physicians, dentists and veterinarians
Optometrists, chiropractors and other health diagnosing and treating professionals
Pharmacists, dietitians and nutritionists
Therapy and assessment professionals
Nurse supervisors and registered nurses
Technical and related occupations in health
Medical technologists and technicians (except dental health)
Technical occupations in dental health care
Other technical occupations in health care (except dental)
Psychologists, social workers, counsellors, clergy and probation officers
Supervisors, mining, oil and gas
Underground miners, oil and gas drillers and related workers
Supervisors in manufacturing
Supervisors, processing occupations
20 occupations showing signs of labour surplus
Managers in manufacturing and utilities
Clerical occupations, general office skills
Office equipment operators
Finance and insurance clerks
Mail and message distribution occupations
Secondary & elementary teachers and counsellors
Sales and service supervisors
Occupations in food and beverage services
Tour & recreational guides and amusement occupations
Other attendants in travel, accommodation and recreation
Technical occupations in personal service
Other occupations in personal service
Butchers & bakers
Upholsterers, Tailors, Shoe Repairers, Jewellers and Related
Fishing vessel masters and skippers and fishermen/women
Machine operators & related workers in metal and mineral products processing
Machine operators & related workers in pulp & paper production and wood processing