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75,000 jobs in five years

A study released Wednesday by the Central Okanagan Economic Development Commission indicated as many as 75,000 people will be hired by businesses in the Okanagan over the next five years.

Conducted for the Regional District of Central Okanagan the study,"Growing in the Okanagan 2020 Labour Market Outlook," assesses the nature and extent of the labour market and demand and supply of skills training and skilled labour in the Okanagan.

“The project was motivated by changing economic climates in British Columbia and the unique opportunities and challenges faced by the Okanagan Region," says Corie Griffiths, Businesses Development Officer for the COEDC.

"The 2020 Okanagan Labour Market Outlook provides comprehensive data from multiple primary and secondary sources which provides detailed information about the future workforce needs throughout the Region.  This information can be used by various industry, training and policy stakeholders to ensure the Okanagan is poised for growth.”

A total of 629 Okanagan employers fully completed the survey. Results have a margin of error of +/- 3.2% 95 times out of 100.

The survey produced 10 points about the Okanagan labour market.

These include:

  1. Over 2/3 of Okanagan employers report that they anticipate a period of growth over
    the next five years.
  2. Construction is the fastest growing Managerial Occupations in the Okanagan.
  3. A large number of new hires will require post-secondary education.
  4. The top five identified employment gaps by industry sector: Retail Trade,
    Manufacturing, Finance & Insurance, Accommodation & Food Service and
    Professional, Scientific & Technical Services
  5. Occupations in the technology sector reported difficulties in sourcing 56 different
    occupations, 31 of which require a post-secondary education.
  6. Close to 1/3 of the top occupations can expect to earn the same or almost the same
    median wage as communities in the Lower Mainland but less than those in Edmonton
    and Calgary.
  7. An estimated 15,522 persons are expected to retire from the Region’s workforce
    within the next five years.
  8. Employers predominately (93%) offer their employees on-the-job training.
  9. 103,501 migrants moved to the Okanagan Region from 2006-2012 (primarily from other
    places in BC). However, over the same period 80,974 people migrated out of the region, resulting in a net in-migration of 22,527.
  10. Employers project to hire over 75,000 people within the next five years.
    This projection is based on current vacancies, the projected retirement rate, projected turnover
    rate, and the projected growth rate.

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