Working Canadians take the long view on the labour market

Amid news of layoffs and a declining national employment rate, Canadians are taking the long view on the job market, according to a new Workopolis poll. Asked to specify when they expect the labour market to improve in light of recent gloomy economic forecasts, 65 per cent of working Canadians said they expect the skies to have cleared in a year or more.

Two-in-ten (22 per cent) Canadians expect a brighter outlook within the next six to twelve months and eight per cent anticipate positive change in the next three to six months. Quebecers and those in the prairies are more likely than the rest of Canadians to believe that things will be looking up in less than a year.

“Canadians have been through recessions before, and we understand that this too shall pass,” said Patrick Sullivan, president of Workopolis, in releasing the survey findings. “If you are in the market for a new opportunity, keep in mind there are still jobs out there, but you may have to be more strategic and focused about your search, and position yourself accordingly.”

Career planning a bigger focus for 2009
A quarter of Canadians are contemplating a New Year’s resolution related to their careers. This has taken on greater significance compared to a similar study in 2006, when only 13 per cent of Canadians said they planned to make work-related resolutions. However, many Canadians still prioritize other aspects of their lives when the countdown starts on New Year’s Eve. Quality time with friends and family is tops for 56 per cent of Canadians, followed by exercise (53 per cent), diet (45 per cent) and quitting smoking (11 per cent).

“Your job satisfaction and career planning are part of the big picture when it comes to your overall happiness and well-being,” says Sullivan.

New career strategies for a new year
Driven by concerns about the economy and their own financial well-being in the coming year, Canadians are thinking proactively about their careers and their marketability for future job opportunities. Four-in-ten (41 per cent) said they would be more likely to seek out increased compensation in 2009.

“If you’re looking for a raise or to move to a job with more salary this year, be sure to do your homework and be realistic,” advises Sullivan. “Prepare a strong case for yourself including being able to demonstrate your achievements.”

Other strategies include:
  • Pursuing additional job training or skill development, with 40 per cent of respondents indicating they would be more likely to consider this next year;
  • A quarter (23 per cent) said that concerns would make them more likely to consider a job change; and
  • Taking an additional job or considering part-time work is more likely in 2009 for a quarter of Canadians (23 per cent).

Albertans are more likely than other Canadians to manage their financial concerns by considering a second or part-time job. More than one-third (34 per cent) are likely to look for additional work, compared to the national average of just under a quarter (23 per cent). is a leading Canadian online career-solutions provider with over 3.3 million unique visitors monthly in Canada. Headquartered in Toronto, Workopolis is the exclusive official supplier of online recruitment services for the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.

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