New Canadian employer survey reveals weakest job outlook since 2011

A new survey of Canadian employers reveals where the employment growth is expected to be – and which areas are lagging behind – for the coming months.

Last week Stats Can reported that the national unemployment rate had fallen to 6.9 per cent. That is its lowest level in several years. This morning however, a new survey of Canadian employers throws some cold water on that positive employment news. Canadian employers say that they are planning to hire fewer workers in the coming months. The Manpower Group has just released its Employment Outlook report for the third quarter of 2016. This regular survey of hiring intentions predicts the slowest employment growth of the past five years.

In this national survey of over 1,900 employers, only 16 per cent say that they plan to hire increased staff. The majority, 78 per cent indicate that they plan to maintain their current workforce, and 1 per cent are uncertain of their plans. The remaining 5 per cent of employers said that they plan to cut staff in the coming months.

While this report indicates the slowest hiring climate since 2011, the news is better for certain regions and industries than others. Amongst the employers surveyed, those in Public Administration were expecting the healthiest hiring climate. Mining companies predict the least hiring of the ten industries surveyed.

Industries predicting the most hiring for Q3 of 2016

  • Public Administration
  • Manufacturing – Durables
  • Services

Industries predicting the least hiring

  • Mining
  • Wholesale and Retail Trade
  • Manufacturing Non-Durables

“Nationally, employment gains are expected to be modest in the third quarter,” said Darlene
Minatel, Vice President, Manpower Canada Operations & Strategic Accounts. “However, we are seeing some bright spots. The Canadian dollar’s prolonged low has been good news for the manufacturing industry. Increased demand for Canadian exports is a big reason the manufacturing ­ durables sector is expecting the largest quarterly employment growth of any sector for Q3.”

Regions expecting to see increased hiring in Q3 of 2016

  • Victoria, BC
  • Eastern Townships, QC
  • Laval, QC
  • Moncton, NB
  • Burnaby, BC
  • Kitchener, ON

Regions expecting to see the least hiring in Q3 of 2016

  • Welland, ON
  • Cornwall, ON
  • Calgary, AB
  • St. John’s, NL
  • Saskatoon, SK
  • Saint John, NB

The results are summarized in the infographic below. Click the image to view a larger version (opens as a PDF). You can also read the full report and view the data tables at