The labor shortage has grown unparalleled in Quebec, especially in the health sector, over the past two years, according to a study by the Quebec Institute unveiled on Tuesday.
The number of job vacancies jumped 38.2% between the first quarter of 2019 and the second quarter of the year, an increase of 53,725, according to Statistics Canada figures.
For the province of Quebec, the rate was 5.3% after an increase of 1.5% over the same period, the highest rate after British Columbia.
But the situation in the health and social services sector is getting worse, as the number of vacancies increased by 69.3% in two years, a jump of 7,990 to stand at 20,630, while wage employment varied only by 11.9%.
The professional nursing staff is suffering the most with 6,905 vacancies, an increase of 3,985, not far from the 4,000 nursing positions the Legault government is seeking to fill.
The phenomenon of labor scarcity is particularly visible in the health and social assistance sector.[…] This very discouraging data suggests that employers will find it difficult to hire qualified workers to meet the growing health needs.”
The increase in job vacancies particularly affected four industries, according to the Institut de Québec.
The manufacturing sector has 25,330 vacancies after an increase of 5,935 jobs in two years, the construction sector has seen the vacancy rate drop from 4.4% to 5.6% to stand at 12,700, while wholesale and retail companies are looking to fill 9,600 and 22,715 jobs, respectively.
Professional, scientific and technical services were particularly affected by an increase of 53.4% during the same period, as it moved from 10,615 to 16,285 vacancies.
“The number of workers available is limited, particularly in this sector of activity, which will make government commitments to create jobs in the health professions a real challenge,” said Ms. Homsi.
With the economic recovery in the third quarter, one would expect companies to post more job vacancies in the coming months.
A survey by Statistics Canada revealed that 11.1% of Quebec companies expect an increase in job vacancies.
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