Evidence of meeting #29 for Human Resources, Skills and Social Development and the Status of Persons with Disabilities in the 41st Parliament, 1st Session. (The original version is on Parliament’s site, as are the minutes.) The winning word was labour.

A recording is available from Parliament.

On the agenda

MPs speaking

Also speaking

  • Tracey Leesti  Director, Labour Statistics, Statistics Canada
  • Marc Lachance  Assistant Director, Labour Statistics, Statistics Canada
  • Josée Bégin  Director, Centre for Education Statistics, Statistics Canada
  • Michael McCracken  Chair and Chief Operating Officer, Informetrica Limited
  • Marie Carter  Chief Operating Officer, Interim Chief Executive Officer, Engineers Canada
  • Alana Lavoie  Manager, Government Relations, Engineers Canada

4:05 p.m.

Conservative

Joe Daniel Don Valley East, ON

I mean in terms of where the biggest job vacancies are in Alberta versus Ontario.

4:05 p.m.

Director, Labour Statistics, Statistics Canada

Tracey Leesti

It's a fairly new data source, so we don't have a full year of data or trend data. But we could break down this chart for you by industry.

4:10 p.m.

Conservative

Joe Daniel Don Valley East, ON

A breakdown by skill set is what I was thinking of.

4:10 p.m.

Director, Labour Statistics, Statistics Canada

Tracey Leesti

We don't have it by skill set; we have it by industry.

4:10 p.m.

Conservative

Joe Daniel Don Valley East, ON

Do you also have a breakdown statistically to show by industry what skills are available in each province—in other words, people who are unemployed and have particular industry skills, by province?

4:10 p.m.

Assistant Director, Labour Statistics, Statistics Canada

Marc Lachance

When you look at the occupations chart, the one on unemployment, one thing StatsCan does have is that with these occupation classifications there's some kind of skill that applies. In each of those skills, there's a classification that says in this occupation there's an expectation of university requirements or a person with a degree.

This information is available, so we can collapse those. We can translate those occupations to some kind of skills definitions, within universities and by province.

4:10 p.m.

Conservative

Joe Daniel Don Valley East, ON

I was actually looking for...if there are 100 people unemployed in Ontario and you know their skills breakdowns, we could match it with other provinces to see why they can't move to get a job.

Do you understand what I'm saying?

4:10 p.m.

Director, Labour Statistics, Statistics Canada

Tracey Leesti

We have to look to see whether that could be somehow derived. It's not something that's readily available. We'd have to look to see if there's some way of deriving it based on the embedded skills set in the occupation classification system.

4:10 p.m.

Conservative

The Chair Ed Komarnicki

Thank you, Mr. Daniel. Your time is well up.

I think the point is well made. You have the contact for the clerk. If you're able to get charts to break it down by province, and/or skills set for each of the provinces, in whatever fashion you could do that it would be helpful to the committee. If you send it to the clerk, the clerk will distribute it to the members.

Ms. Crowder.

March 14th, 2012 / 4:10 p.m.

NDP

Jean Crowder Nanaimo—Cowichan, BC

Thank you, Mr. Chair.

I want to thank the witnesses.

It's interesting. Our study is about fixing the skills gap, addressing existing labour shortages in high-demand occupations, and low-demand as well. I think all committee members are probably very interested in avoiding what I call the “ready, fire, aim” method of decision-making, where we get the wrong order around how we gather information to make decisions.

Part of it is having an accurate assessment of where the projected labour shortages are. What I understand Stats Canada to be saying is that you're giving us what has been. You're not in the business of projection. Is that correct?

4:10 p.m.

Director, Labour Statistics, Statistics Canada

Tracey Leesti

Yes. We provide the information. There are occupational projection systems out there that are done by external analysts, government—HRSDC—but we don't necessarily do occupational projections. We have the data sources that feed into that.

4:10 p.m.

NDP

Jean Crowder Nanaimo—Cowichan, BC

I only have five minutes and I have tons of questions on the data sources, so I'm going to pick on one.

On the job vacancy survey, I've been looking at other papers that look at the demand side. You probably are aware of the questions we raised the other day on some of the problems with demand-side analysis.

On job vacancies, one of the problems that's been identified with the demand side is the fact that the signals are available via newspaper job listings, provincial and public employment agencies, social insurance services, and so on and so on, but they go to on to say there's a great deal of difficulty of accurately classifying jobs based on newspaper ads and the fact that many jobs go unposted.

With your job vacancy survey, very briefly, what kind of range of things do you look at?

4:10 p.m.

Director, Labour Statistics, Statistics Canada

Tracey Leesti

I'll maybe let Marc address it. It's not what we call a “help wanted index”, where we go to postings—online postings or newspaper postings. It's attached to one of our monthly employment surveys.

I'll let Marc explain it a bit more.

4:10 p.m.

NDP

Jean Crowder Nanaimo—Cowichan, BC

Is that the one that's distributed to employers?

4:10 p.m.

Assistant Director, Labour Statistics, Statistics Canada

Marc Lachance

Yes, that's right.