This post is updated as of April 21, reflecting data through April 16. We will be regularly updating these data as we track how COVID-19 impacts the global labour market. This post uses updated methodology from previous posting updates, meaning results are not directly comparable to versions before April 1.
The trend in total job postings on Indeed Canada continued to fall last week compared to 2019. The gap with last year’s path widened for a sixth consecutive week, although the pace of the decline in percentage points terms has eased since late March. As of April 16th, the trend stood 47% below 2019 levels. The April Labour Force Survey (LFS) numbers will reflect employment conditions between April 12 to 18. The trend in postings gives a sense of the state of employer hiring appetite at this time. By comparison, the posting trend was down just 9% from 2019 levels during the March LFS reference week.
The gap in new job postings also widened somewhat last week compared to 2019, falling to 70% below last year’s trend. New job postings were quicker to react to the COVID-19 crisis than total postings, potentially reflecting pre-existing hiring plans that carried over as conditions deteriorated. Their trend was down 27% compared to 2019 during the March LFS reference week.
Same story across provinces
Similar to the Canada-wide numbers, total job postings fell compared to 2019 levels across all provinces last week. The gap compared to last year’s trend is now at least 40% in all regions. Declines have been a tad less in some less-populous provinces like Manitoba, Nova Scotia, and Newfoundland, potentially reflecting their more rural populations. Meanwhile, Alberta continues to stand-out as showing the widest gap, where the economy is dealing with both the COVID-19 shock, and knock-on effects from the recent plunge in oil prices.
Personal services among the hardest hit, health care among the least
At the broad sectoral level, job posting trends are tracking below 2019 levels across the entire Canadian economy. With the economy-wide posting trend down 47% from 2019, the sectors doing “relatively well” are ones with gaps down less than 35% from last year’s path. Continuing patterns seen in recent weeks, these areas include parts of the healthcare sector, like personal care and home health, which employs support workers and healthcare aides, as well as the pharmacy sector. Job posting trends have also declined less than average in security and public safety (which includes security guards), as well as in software development.
On the flip-side, many of the sectors to see the largest drop-offs in posting trends are in personal services requiring face to face interaction. These include hospitality and tourism, food preparation and service, as well as beauty and wellness (which include massage therapists and hairstylists). Job postings in education and instruction are also down sharply compared to last year’s trend.
Lastly, posting trends have followed a similar path as the overall economy across a range of sectors. Banking and finance, production and manufacturing, mechanical engineering, as well as arts and entertainment (which includes artists and designers) have all seen comparable drop-offs in job posting trends relative to 2019 levels as economy-wide postings.
The public health situation and its economic spillovers continue to change on a daily basis. We’ll be regularly updating these data as conditions evolve.
To measure the trends in job postings, we calculated the 7-day moving average of the number of job postings on Indeed Canada. We index each day’s 7-day moving average to the start of February (Feb 1, 2020 = 100 for 2020 data, and so on).
We report how the trend in job postings this year differs from last year, in order to focus on the recent changes in labor market conditions due to COVID-19. For example: if job postings increased 30% from February 1, 2019, to April 10, 2019, but only 20% from February 1, 2020, to April 10, 2020, then the index would have risen from 100 to 130 in 2019 and 100 to 120 in 2020. The year-to-date trend in job postings would therefore be down 7.7% on April 10 (120 is 7.7% below 130) in 2020 relative to 2019.
For new postings, we calculate a similar metric but the underlying measure is the number of postings that have been on Indeed for seven days or less.
The number of job postings on Indeed.com, whether related to paid or unpaid job solicitations, is not indicative of potential revenue or earnings of Indeed, which comprises a significant percentage of the HR Technology segment of its parent company, Recruit Holdings Co., Ltd. Job posting numbers are provided for information purposes only and should not be viewed as an indicator of performance of Indeed or Recruit. Please refer to the Recruit Holdings investor relations website and regulatory filings in Japan for more detailed information on revenue generation by Recruit’s HR Technology segment.