We released a new report today that measures the impact of economic slowdown on hiring demand in Ontario’s 905-communities surrounding the city of Toronto, and looks into what may be in store for the future.
The 26-page report is a detailed analysis of the impact that the ongoing economic slowdown has had on hiring demand in GTA’s suburban communities of Durham, Halton, Peel, and York regions. It was produced after analyzing almost 200,000 postings for job openings in the 905-area published in the time between January 2008 and March 2009 on major online job boards, community newspaper web sites, and specialized job boards.
The full report can be downloaded from the following link:
We found that hiring demand in the suburban GTA was down 30.7% in the first quarter of 2009 compared to the same period of 2008. The bulk of the decline, however, occurred in the last quarter of 2008, and hiring demand in the first quarter of 2009 stabilized along the same seasonal patterns as in previous years.
We also looked into individual trends affecting each of the four regions, and in selected towns and cities. We found that the decline did not affect all communities and occupation types equally. For example, while hiring demand for managers was down by less than 15%, there were 40% less postings in the first quarter of 2009 vs. 2008 for lower paying jobs that typically require less education – such as general help and non-managerial administrative positions. The economic slowdown also seems to have concentrated hiring demand into major suburban economic centres even more than before. Most notably, Mississauga’s share of suburban GTA’s hiring demand grew to 29% in the first quarter of 2009 from 21% a year ago.
Why are these findings important? We believe that the trends uncovered by the report hint at some of the challenges that may lay ahead for suburban GTA communities when the economy starts recovering. If demand for jobs requiring less education does not return to its earlier levels fairly soon, we may encounter higher structural unemployment down the road. And, as far as the regional concentration of job opportunities is concerned, it could cause even more people to commute longer distances to and from work, as residents of some communities may find it even more difficult to find work close to their homes.