New Survey: Hiring in Canada Expected to Increase in Second Quarter of 2019

Businesses Expect Job Vacancies to Grow

Express Experts: More Job Openings than Workers Available

TORONTO, March 27, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- A new survey from Express Employment Professionals shows that hiring is expected to increase in the second quarter of 2019, with hiring particularly strong in the industrial sector.

In an Express survey of businesses, 80 per cent of respondents say they planned to hire in the second quarter. Thirty-nine per cent say they plan to hire general industrial labour and 33 per cent say they plan to hire skilled industrial labour, while 18 per cent plan to fill administrative or clerical jobs.

Taking a broader view, 41 per cent say the employment market is “trending up,” indicating hiring may still pick up further in some parts of the country. Almost half, 49 per cent, say the employment market is “staying the same.” Just 11 per cent say their market is “trending down.” In the previous Express survey, 53 per cent said “staying the same,” 38 per cent said “trending up,” and 9 per cent said “trending down.”

Express franchise owner Sarah Vitelli in Richmond Hill, Ontario, says she’s seeing more hiring.

“Since the beginning of this year, our employment market has increased year over year, for both for full time and part time positions,” she said. “We predict this trend will continue to increase in the upcoming months.”

In Halifax, Nova Scotia, Express franchise owner Shane DeCoste expects hiring to increase as well, but stresses that it is contingent on one important thing.

“We expect to see hiring increase if — and that’s a big if — business can actually find the skill sets that they require,” he said. “Companies have vacant roles that stay open for significantly longer than in the past.” 

On the other side of the country, in Edmonton, Alberta, Express franchise owner Jessica Culo also expects “hiring to increase in the coming months” and agrees that skills gaps are a big problem for employers.

All three Express owners agree that finding qualified workers is the biggest challenge facing employers, with labour shortages being the most acute in the skilled trades and industrial sector. Culo reports that there are significant labour shortages in semi-skilled jobs as well, with “roles like drivers and technicians are going unfilled longer than they did a year ago.” Other industries facing labour shortages include administration and accounting.

“The top challenge faced by employers in every market is the shortage of qualified people,” Vitelli said.  “Employers are posting on multiple job boards, hosting job fairs, providing better incentives to apply and refer people, using brand awareness to help attract talent, but it’s still a daily struggle for every employer and it’s getting harder and harder.”

“We are hearing from companies that they are struggling to find qualified talent to fill vacancies and new jobs created by growth of their business,” DeCoste added. “Companies are consistently telling us that applicant levels remain strong, but the proportion of qualified applicants is dropping steadily. Effort and resources invested in hiring is increasing, meanwhile open jobs continue to grow. Companies have made it clear that hiring and retaining qualified talent is often their biggest challenge restricting growth opportunity.”

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at

“The pace of hiring varies significantly by region, but the fact that hiring continues and so few businesses say their markets are ‘trending down’ is more encouraging news for the economy,” said Bill Stoller, CEO of Express. “It’s worth asking, how much stronger would our economy be if we could fill the more than half a million jobs that were open at last count?”

The survey of 491 businesses, which are current and former clients of Express Employment Professionals, was conducted in February 2019 to gauge respondents' expectations for the second quarter of 2019. 

If you would like to arrange for an interview to discuss this topic, please contact Ana Curic at (613) 858-2622 or email

About Bill Stoller
William H. "Bill" Stoller is chairman and chief executive officer of Express Employment Professionals. Headquartered in Oklahoma City, the international staffing company has more than 800 franchises in the U.S., Canada and South Africa. Since its inception, Express has put more than 7.7 million people to work worldwide.

About Express Employment Professionals
Express Employment Professionals puts people to work. It generated $3.56 billion in sales and employed a record 566,000 people in 2018. Its long-term goal is to put a million people to work annually. For more information, visit  

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