Go West! To Waterloo…

Waterloo companies are looking for tech workers –

WATERLOO REGION, ON, April 13 /CNW/ – Some of Canada’s hottest tech companies will head to the nation’s capital to look for talent when Communitech, the organization representing 700 tech companies in Waterloo Region, holds a ‘Get a Life in Waterloo Region’ recruitment effort there on April 21. Waterloo Region companies continue to hire at a rapid pace, and the recruitment event will profile some of the outstanding 2,000 current tech job openings available in the Region.

“Waterloo Region continues to be a hot-spot for tech and despite economic challenges in other sectors, there are still many opportunities for skilled tech talent,” said Iain Klugman, CEO of Communitech. “The range of opportunity covers most technology areas from software and hardware to wireless and digital media.”

Klugman said Ottawa is a prime recruiting site because of the established reputation of the Ottawa tech community and the concentration of talented scientists, engineers and computer science professionals. Like Ottawa, Waterloo Region offers the best of both worlds: the opportunity to work for world-class companies in a community that’s a great place to live and raise a family, he added.

Companies participating in the recruiting event include big names like Research In Motion and Christie Digital Systems Canada Inc., as well as exciting up-and-comers such as social media analytics company PostRank. It will also feature some leading medical imaging firms including Agfa HealthCare, which is breaking new ground for its new building and has announced plans to increase its Ontario workforce by 140 new employees.

“PostRank and Agfa HealthCare are representative of the companies in Waterloo Region — innovative, passionate and ahead of the curve, and looking for the best and brightest talent. Availability of knowledge workers continues to be a key factor in the growth and competitiveness of tech firms in Waterloo Region,” Klugman said.

Communitech and a sampling of the Region’s hottest technology companies will be at the Brookstreet Hotel, 525 Legget Drive, Ottawa on Wednesday, April 21 from 5-7:30 p.m. to meet with tech professionals one-on-one. The full roster of companies participating in ‘Get a Life in Waterloo Region’ includes: PostRank; Agfa HealthCare; Christie Digital Systems Canada, Inc.; Research In Motion; Covarity; Sandvine; DALSA; and Nuvation. Visit www.waterlootechjobs.com for further information or to register.


Ottawa-Gatineau #9 in Small Business Growth

Ottawa-Gatineau is #9 in small business growth among Canadian CMA’s (Census Metropolitan Areas):


Some Interesting Statistics

  • Small businesses employed roughly five million people in 2008, comprising nearly half of the private-sector labour force.
  • Between 1998 and 2008, small businesses created more than one-third of all new private sector jobs. In 2008, they created roughly 70,000 jobs, almost 70% of the Canadian total.
  • About 25% of small businesses operate in the goods-producing sector and the remaining 75% are in service industries.
  • 64% of businesses in Canada have 6 or less employees:


  • Small businesses are highly represented in the following industries:
    • Construction
    • Non-institutional health care
    • Professional services
    • Retail
    • Accommodation & food services
    • Truck transportation
    • Forestry

ref:  Canada’s Small Business Juggernaut, BMO, October 2009

US at 17.5% Unemployed and Underemployed

The New York Times published  an article on November 6th that talked to the point that the “broader measure of unemployment stands at 17.5%“.

The 17.5% rate includes the officially unemployed, who have looked for work in the last four weeks. It also includes discouraged workers, who have looked in the past year, as well as millions of part-time workers who want to be working full time.

The actual rate of underemployment may be even higher since the official government definitions and measures of unemployment miss other underemployment cases.

According to wikipedia, in economics, the term underemployment has three different distinct meanings and applications. All meanings involve a situation in which a person is working, unlike unemployment, where a person who is searching for work cannot find a job.   Underemployment can mean:

  1. The employment of workers with high skill levels in low-wage jobs that do not require such abilities, for example a trained medical doctor who works as a taxi driver.
  2. “Involuntary part-time” workers — workers who could (and would like to) be working for a full work-week but can only find part-time work. By extension, the term is also used in regional planning to describe regions where economic activity rates are unusually low, due to a lack of job opportunities, training opportunities, or due to a lack of services such as childcare and public transportation.
  3. “Overstaffing” or “hidden unemployment”, the practice in which businesses or entire economies employ workers who are not fully occupied—for example, workers currently not being used to produce goods or services due to legal or social restrictions or because the work is highly seasonal.

Former U.S. labour secretary Robert Reich has said that he believes the Unofficial U.S. jobless rate could be as high as 20%.


Latest Employment Stats for October

Region Unemployment Rate
Ottawa 5.2%
Gatineau 5.9%
Ontario 9.3%
Canada 8.6%
U.S. 10.2% (26 year high) / 17.5% (including underemployed)

The Globe and Mail has this interactive webpage that gives numbers by city and province:


BMO publishes employment reports for the US and Canada.

Stats Canada Labour Force Survey Nov 6, 2009 provides some insights in the job types and associated impacts:

Employment by class of worker and industry (based on NAICS)
September 2009 October 2009 September to October 2009 October 2008 to October 2009
Seasonally adjusted
thousands % change
Class of worker
Employees 14,110.5 14,039.8 -0.5 -3.5
Self-employed 2,727.5 2,755.0 1.0 3.9
Public/private sector employees
Public 3,433.0 3,407.4 -0.7 -1.6
Private 10,677.5 10,632.3 -0.4 -4.1
All industries 16,838.0 16,794.8 -0.3 -2.3
Goods-producing sector 3,714.6 3,708.3 -0.2 -8.2
Agriculture 319.5 321.9 0.8 -1.3
Natural resources 313.0 301.7 -3.6 -11.0
Utilities 150.3 149.9 -0.3 0.9
Construction 1,166.8 1,178.0 1.0 -5.8
Manufacturing 1,765.0 1,756.8 -0.5 -11.0
Services-producing sector 13,123.4 13,086.4 -0.3 -0.5
Trade 2,662.9 2,632.1 -1.2 -1.7
Transportation and warehousing 797.7 819.9 2.8 -5.8
Finance, insurance, real estate and leasing 1,121.1 1,118.0 -0.3 4.4
Professional, scientific and technical services 1,199.8 1,196.9 -0.2 -0.6
Business, building and other support services 645.8 639.0 -1.1 -4.6
Educational services 1,188.4 1,196.5 0.7 -1.0
Health care and social assistance 1,946.8 1,955.1 0.4 1.7
Information, culture and recreation 791.5 785.1 -0.8 4.8
Accommodation and food services 1,032.0 1,034.5 0.2 -2.9
Other services 805.4 785.5 -2.5 2.5
Public administration 932.0 923.8 -0.9 -3.1