Edmonton

1 in 6 Edmonton employers plan to hire this spring, new survey suggests

The latest survey of employer's plans to increase or decrease their workforce anticipates a modest gain of employment in Edmonton and the country.

ManpowerGroup surveyed 1,900 Canadian employers to measure intentions to hire or fire employees

A recent survey of employers by the ManpowerGroup anticipates a 'mild hiring climate' over the next three months. (CBC)

A new quarterly survey suggests about 16 per cent of Edmonton employers intend to hire in the upcoming three months, while four per cent anticipate cutbacks.

Among employers surveyed, 79 per cent say they expect staffing levels to remain unchanged. One per cent said thyey were unsure of their hiring plans.

ManpowerGroup, a staffing firm that studies labour market and employment trends, released its latest Canadian employer survey of 1,900 employers on Monday. The survey is conducted every quarter to measure employer intentions to increase or decrease staff.

Edmonton can expect to see a "mild employment climate" over the next three months, which would put the city on pace with the national average. The results suggest the city may see modest gains in employment in the short term.

"It's right on mark with the Canadian outlook," said Ahmed Borhot, Manpower Alberta operations leader.

This Net Employment Outlook of 10 per cent for Edmonton is a one percentage point decrease when compared to the previous quarterly outlook. When compared to the results of last year's Edmonton outlook, it's a decrease of five percentage points.

Western Canada had the lowest job outlook at seven per cent compared to Ontario, Quebec and Eastern Canada. Quebec at 18 per cent has the highest outlook.

"Canadian job growth has picked up in the first quarter of 2019, and this appears to be reflected in the forecast for the second quarter of 2019, said Darlene Minatel, Country Manager for ManpowerGroup Canada, in a news release.

"With the private sector ramping up hiring efforts, 66,800 new jobs were created January, and this trend can be expected to continue in the second quarter of the year."

On Friday Statistics Canada released its monthly unemployment rates of 33 metropolitan areas. Edmonton ranked third highest with an unemployment rate of seven per cent, behind Calgary and St. John's. 

Statistics Canada cited an increase of 3,800 jobs across Alberta in February. Between those jobs and the latest Manpower survey, Borhot calls it a good scenario and says people are coming back into the workforce.

"Ultimately the biggest piece of insight I can give is for job seekers to understand the skills gap, understand that there is work out there, but understanding what you're skill set versus what's skill set that's needed and bridging that gap," Borhot said. "Right now there is a major talent shortage."

Travis.mcewan@cbc.ca

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