2020 Business Council of Canada Skills Survey: Investing in a resilient Canadian workforce

Date: August 11, 2020

Publication Type: Reports

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Publications Archives: Reports

New technologies, demographic shifts and global volatility are just a few of the forces affecting workplaces around the globe.  

Canadian employers are responding to the rapid pace of change by looking for ways to build a more resilient workforce, with a focus on talent that can easily adapt to changing conditions and demonstrate a mix of skills.  

Completed in partnership with Morneau Shepell and the Business + Higher Education Roundtable and based on a survey of our members, the fourth biennial skills survey explores the Canadian talent market through the eyes of human resources executives at some of Canada’s largest employers.  

This report is not a definitive look at Canada’s changing labour market; instead, it explores how employers are responding to rapid change and attempting to prepare for an uncertain future

Five key takeaways: 

  1. Employers are optimistic about workforce growth in the coming years, but they worry about a shortage of technical skills and a gap in human skills like collaboration and problem solving. 
  2. While employers are expecting more from new graduates when it comes to productivity, resiliency, technical and human skills; candidates have greater expectations around work-life balance, flexibility, empowerment, and meaningful work. 
  3. Employers are uncertain about how many (and which) jobs will be affected by technological change. 
  4. Employee training continues to be an important investment for employers in this survey, with 71 per cent expecting to increase this spending in the next three years. 
  5. Survey respondents are interested in forging stronger relationships with colleges and universities, both to improve talent pools and to understand and prepare for the future needs of the workplace. 


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