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Electricity in Demand

New evidence projected to 2028 highlights emerging human resource issues affecting Canada’s electricity sector. The study sets forth a road map and recommended strategies to harness the sector’s full potential and maximize its role in helping Canada achieve its carbon reduction objectives related to climate change impact. The objectives of this report are threefold:

To reveal the challenges, opportunities, trends, and key workforce issues confronting Canada’s electricity sector

 

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To provide labour market data, intelligence, and projections that enable stakeholders to make evidence-based workforce-related decisions;
To identify human resources solutions that augment the electricity sector’s ability to attract, develop, and retain the talent needed to support its goals and initiatives.

Key Findings

Building upon EHRC’s 2018 Workers in Motion report, today’s release of the Labour Market Intelligence (LMI) Study provides current and updated information as well as five-year projections of the labour outlook for the Canadian electricity sector to 2028.

Rapid growth leads to labour demand

  • Total employment in the sector has increased by over 12% in the past five years – equivalent to an average annual growth rate of 2.3%. Most of this growth is concentrated in the renewable energy space.
  • Close to 28,000 new employees will be needed by 2028, equivalent to 25% of the current labour force – 57% to replace retiring employees, 43% to meet expansion demand.

Electricity sector urgently needs a comprehensive human resource strategy

  • For the sector to achieve its economic and environmental objectives, the report offers a three-pronged human resources strategy and action plan that focuses on:
    • attracting and retaining workers to the sector (quantity of labour);
    • safeguarding full-time employment and ensuring workers have the right
      training and skills (quality of labour); and
    • matching workers with opportunities in the labour market (workforce
      partnerships).

What occupations are facing skills shortages, and will be most difficult to fill in 2028?

  • Nearly half of the sector’s 34 core occupations will face labour shortages at the
    economy-wide level.
  • Each of the four groups of occupations considered in the analysis, albeit to varying degrees, will be impacted: Managers & supervisors, Engineers & engineering technologists, Trades, and Information and Communications Technology (ICT).

New training programs for the sector are urgently needed

  • Technological advancements in the sector require updated and new courses and academic programs for workers. However, the development time required can be too long.
  • There is considerable scope for increased collaboration and coordination between educators and employers to ensure the provision of in-demand skills and improvement of training programs.

Read the report

Regional Snapshots

EHRC has just released these supplementary Regional Snapshot reports aimed at providing insights into the dynamics of the electricity sector specific to regional levels. These Regional Snapshots reports are designed to serve as essential resources for industry stakeholders, policymakers, and educators. By providing region-specific data, EHRC aims to facilitate informed decision-making, drive targeted strategies, and contribute to the overall advancement of the electricity and renewables sector. EHRC encourages all industry enthusiasts to explore these reports and leverage the insights to contribute to the sustainable growth of the electricity sector.

Acknowledgements

EHRC would like to express our sincere gratitude and appreciation to the organizations who participated on the National LMI Steering Committee.

  • ATCO Electric
  • British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT)
  • CanREA
  • Electrical Contractors Association of Ontario (ECAO)
  • Enercon
  • Georgian College
  • Hydro One
  • Hydro Ottawa
  • International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW)
  • Nova Scotia Power
  • Ontario Power Generation (OPG)
  • Power Workers’ Union (PWU)
  • Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (SAIT)
  • Saskatchewan Power
  • TransAlta
  • University of Waterloo

EHRC would also like to thank the many interview respondents – employers, educational institutions and additional organizations who participated in this study.

The five-year report Electricity in Demand: Labour Market Insights 2023-2028 has been funded in part by the Government of Canada’s Sectoral Workforce Solutions Program.

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