Employment opportunities in Ontario

Canadian Job Market

As a postindustrial country, the majority of jobs in Canada are in the services sector which can be explained by factors such as technological advances, innovation, and population aging.

Employment Growth by Sector

During 2017, social assistance and healthcare experienced the highest payroll employment growth, followed by sectors such as food services and accommodation, and technical, scientific, and professional services. Technical, scientific, and professional services saw strong and steady employment growth in 2018, especially in Ontario, Quebec, and New Brunswick. Employment in secondary and elementary schools also rose, especially in provinces such as British Columbia, Quebec, and Ontario.

Other sectors that experienced growth include public administration, educational services, construction, and manufacturing. Some sectors faced negative growth, among which management of enterprises and companies, and lodging, forestry, and support activities.

Employment in gas and oil extraction and quarrying also rose in 2017, and about 50 percent of the gains were in Alberta. It is mainly driven by demand for workers such as testers, servicers, and gas and oil well drillers. In general, Ontario experienced the highest employment growth, followed by Quebec, British Columbia, and Alberta. Newfoundland and Labrador and Saskatchewan are the only province and territory to experience negative growth. In terms of unemployment, provinces such as Newfoundland and Labrador and Saskatchewan also saw average increased unemployment duration while Manitoba, Nova Scotia, and New Brunswick experiences little change.

The largest number of job vacancies is in the services and sales sectors, followed by transport and trades. Professions for which the number of vacancies is the smallest include material handlers and longshore workers and laborers and trades helpers.

In general, the number of employees in the private and public sectors grew but the public sector saw higher employment growth. Self-employed employees also grew in number.

High-Paying, In-Demand Jobs

Some of the highest-paying, in-demand jobs in Canada include software engineer, registered nurse, university professor, and account manager. Account managers, for example, are paid between $57,000 and $101,000 a year. The salary of software engineers is in the range of $48,000 – $153,000. Anesthesiologists are also in high demand across Canada and are paid between $109,000 and $580,000. The average salary is at about $298,800. Other well-paid occupations that are in high demand include business analyst, chartered professional accountant, IT project manager, and engineering project manager. Among the lowest paying jobs, on the other hand, are food counter attendant, waiter, bartender, dishwasher, and sewing machine operator. Bartenders, for example, are paid between around $20,090 and $42,830 a year while the salary of sewing machine operators is in the range of around $22,510 and $41,540.

In terms of increase in weekly earnings, sectors that saw the fastest growth include food services and accommodation, public administration, retail trade, and construction. Sectors that experienced the lowest growth include support and administrative services and educational services while manufacturing even experienced negative growth.

Major Employers

Some of the top employers in Canada are companies such as Air Canada, Brookfield Asset Management, and Magna International. In terms of profits, the largest Canadian public company is the Bank of Canada:, followed by banks such as Toronto-Dominion, Royal Bank, and Bank of Montreal. Other big companies by profit include Canadian Natural Resources, Canadian National Railway, and Suncor Energy. Companies and institutions recognized as some of the best employers include Pratt & Whitney, Avis Budget Group, University of Toronto, and Google. Employers doing the most for their workers and employees operate across sectors such as education, aerospace and defense, travel and leisure, and software, internet, and information technologies.

Employment Opportunities in Ontario

Residents and newcomers to Ontario have access to a diverse pool of employment opportunities due to its strong economy. Employers operate across different sectors such as machinery, mechanical equipment, motor vehicles, and pharmaceutical products.

Labor Market in Ontario and Figures

In 2018, the unemployment rate in Ontario was 5.9 percent, and 65 percent of people were looking for a job or were employed. Places such as Windsor and St. Catherines have higher-than-average unemployment rates (7.3 and 7.5 percent, respectively) while the rate in Guelph is lower (3.6 percent). During the first three quarters of 2018, some 75,300 persons were in the group of long-term unemployed, down by 15,700 compared to 2017.

Employment by Sector

The main employers in Ontario operate in sectors such as financial services (359,000 employees), environmental technologies and cleantech (65,000), food and beverage (97,000). Well-developed sectors also include information technology, chemical and biochemical, and automotive. Auto manufacturers such as Toyota, Honda, GM, Ford, and Chrysler have plants in Ontario while companies such as The Woodbridge Group, MIS Electronics, Magna, and ABC Group are headquartered in the province. Toyota and Hino have plants in Woodstock while Chrysler and Honda run plants in Windsor and Alliston, respectively. Some 20,000 information technology companies also operate in Ontario, among which Cisco, Siemens, Microsoft, IBM, HP. They operate across subsectors such as quantum technology, interactive digital media, and artificial intelligence. Food and beverage manufacturing is also a strong sector in Ontario, with companies specializing in packaging, processing, and specialized transportation and storage. Companies such as Saputo, Nestle, Mars, and Coca Cola are major employers. The chemical and biochemical sectors employ some 29,000 persons, with companies mainly operating in Eastern Ontario, Greater Toronto Area, and Sarnia-Lambton. Companies operate across subsectors such as petroleum refining, biobased materials and chemicals, specialty chemicals, and industrial gases. Major employers include companies such as Shell Canada, Suncor, Imperial Oil, and NOVA Chemicals. Finally, the financial services sector is a major employer in Toronto in light of the fact that 5 of the biggest Canadian banks operate in Toronto.

Big international financial institutions also operate in the province, including the Bank of Tokyo and Bank of China. The insurance sector employees 100,520 people, capital markets employ 86,160, and the banking sector offers employment to 172,320.

In-Demand Jobs

Employers in Ontario are hiring retail sales persons, food counter attendants, patient service associates, and nurse aides. Other in-demand jobs include administrative officer, educational counsellor. Jobs with expected positive growth by 2020 include business services professionals, editors, and cardiology technologists. Other professions with the most job growth are motor vehicle supervisor and motor vehicle tester, inspector, and assembler.

Sectors that experienced positive job growth between 2017 and 2018 include equipment operators, transport, trades, management, and administration, finance. Sectors that lost jobs include sports, recreation, culture, and art, sales and service, and health. In fact, the health services sector lost the most jobs (33,700), followed by the sales and service sector (17,200).

Highest-Paying Occupations

Commissioned police officers earn about $64 per hour while senior managers are paid about $53 per hour. The list of high-paying occupations also includes school administrators and principals (about $48), senior firefighting officers ($48,50), and information systems managers (about $47).