The Canadian workforce is getting older and more diverse, according to the latest data released from the 2011 National Household Survey.
Over the past five decades the demographics of Canada’s labour force have changed drastically according to the work of the late economist and statistician Sylvia Ostry, whose census figures from 1961 show that men used to make up the vast majority of the workforce.
Additionally, the vast majority of those men worked in blue-collar professions such as manufacturing. Women were mostly employed in white-collar professions including teaching, nursing and clerical work.
Thirty years later, in 1981 the picture had already changed significantly. Over half of the women in Canada were working and two-thirds of all Canadians were working in the service industry. Furthermore, population growth had stalled at just one percent per year, down from three percent in 1951.
Today’s survey data shows that the trends noted in 1981 have continued – population growth has stalled while women now make up almost half of the workforce. In fact, women are now more educated than their male counterparts, particularly in terms of young men and women.
Though this may come as good news to many, experts have noted some troubling trends in the latest data, including the continued aging of the Canadian workforce as well as continued attraction to service-sector jobs at the cost of manufacturing industries.
This means that in the coming years it is likely that Canadian employers, particularly those located in the economically booming provinces out West, are increasingly going to have to look elsewhere, such as the immigration system, to fill their labour needs. This is already being done in places like Saskatchewan, which has welcomed record numbers of immigrants in recent years.
Source: Ottawa Citizen