Let’s Not Forget Our Local Global Talent!

This week blog edition is a commentary on The Globe and Mail article Five Ways Companies Can Address a Shortage of Skills by Gillian Livingston(The Globe and Mail, published Monday, Apr. 29 2013).

The Globe and Mail Article Summary

Recent research done by Accenture, a consulting services firm, shows that 59 per cent of Canadian executives are concerned about the availability of skilled labour their organizations will need over the next two years.  Michael Denham, managing director for Accenture in Canada pointed out in a recent speech to the Toronto Board of Trade that more than 500,000 unskilled workers “won’t be able to find work in the next decade – even as 1.5 million job vacancies go unfilled”. The survey’s results echo the findings of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce that the skills crisis is the main barrier to Canada’s competitiveness. Mr. Denham outlined five strategies companies can deploy to address the skills gap and ensure they have the required staff.

  • Reinvent: rethink traditional patterns in finding workers.
  • Re-evaluate: track and measure skills within the company.
  • Recruit: train new hires to acquire or strengthen the skills they need for the job.
  • Realign: redeploy existing employees into new roles and relocate existing workers to new locations.
  • Collaborate: work with other industry players and educational institutions to build a pool of skilled workers and to share the costs and risks of establishing training programs.

Let’s Not Forget Our Local Global Talent!

The Wave: The Globe and Mail Article Commentary

We applaud the author for bringing attention to a widely discussed and very important issue lately: the shortage of skilled workers in Canada and the struggle of Canadian employers to find solutions to improve this situation.

Mr. Denham’s study is timely in that it ‘brings to light’ some possible solutions and strategies to address some of the labour market shortage issues. It may have been implied but from an ERIEC perspective we would remind employers that a part of the solution may include the maximization of the global talent that exists right here in the City and in the Province.  For example, how about an internationally trained journeyman from a country with similar standards in welding, pipefitting, etc.?  The new immigration policy is and will be focused on the trades in the months and years to come. Another suggestion that could expedite recruitment of certain skills would be to evaluate, assess, test and certify those trades people prior to arrival into Canada. It could be both an effective and low-cost way to address at least a part of the problem.

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