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Canadian Job Postings Through November 27: Hiring Appetite Steady

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Job postings held up in November.

This post is updated as of November 30, reflecting data through November 27. We will be regularly updating this data as we track how COVID-19 impacts the global labour market. 

Key points:

  • As of November 27, total job postings on Indeed Canada stood 6% below last year’s trend, a decent improvement from the week prior. 
  • The total posting gap has narrowed five percentage points in the past month, as job postings have held steady at a time when they’re typically falling. 
  • Job posting trends are quite strong in pandemic-insulated sectors like health care as well as loading and stocking.

Total job postings on Indeed Canada stood -6% below last year’s trend on November 27, up from -8% the prior Friday. The closing of the gap reflected a steady trend in this year’s numbers, combined with a dip at the same time last year, continuing a general pattern seen since the start of October. The result has been that the gap between trends has narrowed five percentage points over the past month.

Line graph titled “Canadian job postings continue to recover”. With a vertical axis of -60%-10%, the graph shows the Indeed Canada total job postings, 2020 vs 2019 % gap in trend through Nov. 27 (Indexed to Feb-01, 7-day avg.) The gap was at 0% on February 14, and started dropping in March. By the end of April and into May, the gap was -49%. The gap started to recover in May, reaching -6% by Nov. 27. Caption added post-publication. 

Helping narrow the total postings gap was ongoing momentum in new postings, which were 13% above last year’s trend, up from 11% above the week prior. The recent pace at which new jobs are being posted has been sufficient to keep total postings moving in the right direction. While the upswing in new COVID-19 across most of Canada puts this progress in jeopardy, so far, it hasn’t had much of an impact on overall hiring appetite.

Line graph titled “New job postings being added at a solid pace vs. last year’s trend.” With a vertical axis of -75% to 30%, the graph shows Indeed Canada new job postings, 2020 vs 2019 % gap in trend through Nov. 27 (Indexed to Feb-01, 7-day avg.) The gap was at 15% on February 14, and started dropping in March. By mid-April, the gap was -70%. The gap started to rise at the end of April, reaching +13% by Nov. 27. Caption added post-publication.

Progress continues in most provinces

Provincial-level postings trends are generally following the Canada-wide pattern. Despite

rising COVID-19 cases west of the Maritimes, and new restrictions in certain provinces, gaps in total posting trends continue to narrow across nearly all provinces, with Manitoba one exception. Quebec has broadly followed the Canada-wide path, despite restrictions on activities like indoor dining having hit employment, even as of October. Meanwhile, it might be too soon to assess  how new restrictions on retail activity in the Toronto area might have impacted Ontario-wide postings. 

Table titled “Posting gaps continue to close in most provinces.” The table compares the Indeed Canada new job postings: 2020 vs 2019 % gap in trend through Nov. 27 (7-day avg.) and the ppt. chg since Oct. 30, between 10 provinces. Canada’s total % gap in trend is -6% and +5% ppt. chg. The largest positive gap is P.E.I., with +38% and a +15% ppt. chg. The largest negative gap is Manitoba with -14% and a +1% ppt. chg. Caption added post-publication.

Pandemic-insulated sectors powering through

Over the past month, job postings have continued to improve compared to last year across most sectors. Job postings are now back to normal across a range of pandemic-insulated areas like IT Operations and Helpdesk, Software Engineering, and Banking and Finance. Meanwhile, certain areas that might see increases in demand during the public health crisis, like loading and stocking, as well as personal care and home health have postings now well above last year’s trend.

Table titled “Pandemic-exposed sectors lagging posting recoveries elsewhere.” The table shows the 2020 vs 2019 % gap in trend through Nov. 27 (7-day avg), comparing sectors with a smaller gap than average, gap similar to economy average, and wider gap than average. The sectors with a wider gap than average- the pandemic-exposed sectors- include Marketing (-15%), Food Preparation & Service (-33%), Hospitality & Tourism (-33%), and Sports (-47%). Caption added post-publication.

At the same, postings remain quite weak in several pandemic-exposed sectors like food preparation and service, which were a third less than their 2019 trend as of late November. The gap was actually somewhat smaller than a month earlier, but not because of a stronger hiring appetite this year. Rather, postings in the sector were falling at a faster pace over this time last year, albeit from a much higher level. Trends in hospitality and tourism, as well as sports are also depressed. 

Lastly, a range of sectors are following the economy-wide trend, gradually improving, though still yet to have fully recovered. Included in this group are several white collar and office-related areas like administrative assistance and management, and others like installation and maintenance and community and social service.

The public health situation and its economic spillovers continue to change on a daily basis. We’ll be regularly updating this data as conditions evolve.

Methodology

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.

Information based on publicly available information on the Indeed Canada website (and other countries named in the post), limited to Canada, is not a projection of future events, and includes both paid and unpaid job solicitations.