Labour Market Overview
The Calgary labour force has grown dramatically over the past decade, due to growth in Alberta’s energy sector and its spin-off effects.
Growth in the labour force has been driven by immigration, inter-provincial migration and increased labour force participation. However, in recent years, Calgary’s labour market has started to tighten, and employers are building recruitment strategies to attract new talent from locations across Canada and around the world.
Labour market facts
Among Canada's largest census metropolitan areas, Calgary:
- Tied with Edmonton for lowest unemployment rate in 2012 at 4.7 per cent
- Has had the highest wages and salaries per employee in Canada for the past 12 years ($66,844 per employee in 2012)
- Had the highest labour force productivity in Canada in 2012 at $97,607 in real GDP per worker
- Has had the country's highest labour force participation rate at 74.7 per cent (2012)
- Had the highest employment-to-population ratio in Canada at 58.7 per cent (2006 Census)
- Has 48.8 per cent of its population within the core working age group of 25 to 54 (2012)
- Has had the highest total labour force growth over the past 10 years (2003-2012) in Canada (27.0 per cent)
- Has the second youngest population with a median age of just 36.0 (2012)
Calgary has a number of post-secondary institutions that provide world-class training and position new graduates for successful careers in their chosen field. Canada’s labour force has one of the highest levels of educational attainment in the world and Calgary’s levels of post-secondary completion are among the highest in Canada. This is reflected in the fact that Calgary has one of the fastest-growing and largest concentrations of workers in the professional, scientific and technical services industry in North America.
Recruitment outside of Calgary
For employers looking for talent outside of the city, Calgary Economic Development released its 2012 Demand and Labour Supply Study. The study looked at 25 in-demand occupations for Calgary, and the top cities for employers to recruit from in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom and Ireland. The study also identified the top 500 in-demand occupations for Calgary in the coming years. To learn more about the study, contact the sector specialist.
To view the full 2012 Demand and Labour Supply Study, click here.
Employers additionally have two government programs to support the hiring of temporary foreign workers. To learn more about hiring temporary foreign workers, visit Hiring Foreign Workers.