BC Chamber Labour Survey
From labour shortages to significant skills mismatches, British Columbians will ring in Labour Day against a backdrop of labour challenges — according to a recent BC Chamber MindReader™ survey done in partnership with the BC Government, which canvassed business leaders across BC.
Two-thirds of BC businesses had positions that were difficult-to-fill in the past year.
- majority of difficult-to-fill positions were for higher skilled or senior positions,
- Nearly one-quarter (24%) of businesses had middle or senior manager positions vacant for over six months,
There was a diversity of specific skills mismatches
- the most common gaps in job-specific technical skills (57%) and other direct on- the-job experience (46%)
- Customer service experience gaps were common for over one-third (37%) of respondents
- leadership skills mismatches were common for just under one-third (31%) of respondents.
More than half of respondents indicated they were increasing wages (56%) and/or benefits (52%) as a strategic tool to retain staff.
- working conditions and business culture: nearly two-thirds (63%) focusing on improving working conditions to retain staff.
3 clear and significant trends have emerged from this report:
- Severity of labour shortages: employers in most regions and industries of the province are challenged with recruiting and retaining quality staff due to the robust provincial economy and corresponding “tight” labour market;
- Significance of skills mismatches: with nearly three-quarters (72%) of employers indicating they routinely hire less-qualified employees and train them on-the-job, there is a clear need to improve the alignment of (skilled) labour demand and supply in B.C.
- Emphasis on local recruitment: considering the current severity of labour shortages, it is notable that most employees continue to focus recruitment efforts on the local/community labour market rather than recruiting more aggressively from other parts of B.C. and Canada.
Current BC Chamber policies to address labour challenges:
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