Canada’s best (and worst) cities and towns for finding a job right now

Among the best career advice you will ever receive is to be flexible, to change with the market. Update your skills and go where the opportunities are. You greatly increase your chances of career success by moving from an area of high unemployment to one of labour shortage.

Like all good advice that isn’t just useless platitudes such as ‘believe in yourself’ and ‘follow your dreams,’ it’s not easy to implement. Success takes hard work. So, if you’re looking to make a career move, and you’ve got freedom of mobility, here are the best (and worst) cities and towns in Canada for finding employment according to a new report from BMO.

Oshawa, Ontario continues to top the nation for hiring markets. Which is good news. Just a few years ago the Durham region near Oshawa was considered such a negative area for jobs that the Workopolis crew and I went out there to offer resume writing services and career advice to townhalls. This was as part of the Million Dollar Neighbourhood show on the Oprah Winfrey Network. There’s been a turnaround in the job market since.

Here’s us on the OWN back in the day.

Canada’s top ten towns for employment right now

    10. St. John’s, NL
    9. Windsor, ON
    8. Toronto, ON
    7. Edmonton, AB
    6. Regina, SK
    5. Victoria, BC
    4. Kitchener, ON
    3. Halifax, NS
    2. Vancouver, BC
    1. Oshawa, ON

Calgary is the largest major city to make the list of worst job markets right now, a direct result of the downturn in the energy sector. While finding work might be a struggle in some of the harder hit communities, on the bright side, the Canadian national unemployment rate is 6.8%, which is the lowest it has been in over 16 years.

The ten worst place for finding a job in Canada

    10. Trois-Rivieres, QC
    9. Calgary, AB
    8. London, ON
    7. Abbotsford, BC
    6. Thunder Bay, ON
    5. Kelowna, BC
    4. Saint John, NB
    3. St. Catharines, ON
    2. Sudbury, ON
    1. Saguenay, QC

Read the full report from BMO. [Opens as a PDF]

Here’s a look at what the average job in Canada actually pays right now.