To identify the best cities in Canada for engineering jobs, it’s important to conduct research. Because when you know what cities provide the best opportunities for your engineering background it can help you to secure a job faster.
And to help you begin your research, we’ll look at four key factors:
- What’s broadly happening in the engineering sector in Canada
- Provincial or territorial and regional (local) job prospects
- Labour market rating (Good, Fair, or Limited)
- Factors that influence the demand for engineers in Canada.
And when you look at Canadian cities within this context, you can assess which ones may be best for you and your engineering background.
Also, you may want to consider if you prefer to live in a large, fast-paced city, or a smaller city that may provide a slower pace of living. And many small cities in Canada want to attract newcomers to help grow their cities and economy.
In addition, small cities can provide an employment advantage because the job market may be less competitive. So let’s look at the four factors that we identified to help you to determine the best cities for engineering jobs in Canada.
1. What’s happening in the engineering sector in Canada
It’s helpful to research what’s happening in the engineering environment to gain a broader understanding of the job market in Canada. This knowledge will put you in a better position to achieve your career goals in Canada. For example, it’s important to know:
- The type of engineering projects that are taking place across Canada
- What provinces or territories are experiencing demand for engineers to complete projects
- The regions and cities within the province that are experiencing large things such as population growth and need for infrastructure development/renewal
And, with this information, you can begin to identify the best cities in Canada for engineering jobs that will provide you with job prospects before you arrive in Canada.
2. Provincial and regional job prospects
While engineers are in demand in Canada, you need to know the provincial and regional job market conditions. Regional differences will also contribute to varying job market conditions such as:
- Geography (for example coastal regions of Canada may be best for marine engineers)
- Industry (for example the oil and gas industry has a heavy presence in Alberta)
- Natural resources
However, with an aging workforce expected to retire within the next decade, Canadian employers will need to fill those positions in many provinces across Canada. And when you understand what engineering jobs are in demand at the provincial level, then you explore jobs in cities located within the province.
So with the right skills, designations, and experience, you’ll likely find great jobs in a number of Canadian cities. Or, you may benefit from an engineering bridging program in Canada. Bridging programs are a great way to transition your international experience and training to the Canadian workplace.
Labour market rating
You can find out what the labour market is like for a range of engineering jobs in Canada by looking at the Government of Canada’s Labour Market Information (LMI) site. Here you’ll find information for jobs based on the National Occupational Classification (NOC).
Employers use the NOC to identify the skills that are required for specific jobs in Canada. It can also be used to identify occupational shortages in Canada.
And you can research labour market information for various engineering titles by using either:
- A job title, or
- The four-digit NOC code (see examples below)
It’s important to use the NOC that best describes your professional background and work experience. Because the right NOC will help you to identify which cities are looking for your specific skills and knowledge.
To get started, here are a few engineering NOC Codes:
3. Know how the engineering job market is rated
The LMI rates the job outlook using a 3-star rating system. So you can determine if the job market is:
⭐⭐⭐ Good: compared to other occupations, the job outlook in the short- to medium-term is better than average in the region.
⭐⭐ Fair: the job outlook for the short- to medium-term is comparable to other professions. The demand for labour may be average or greater than average, and the supply of workers is similar to the labour demand.
⭐ Limited: the job outlook for the short- to medium-term is below average compared to other professions.
And when you conduct research, you can use the rating system to:
- Identify what provinces have fair or good job prospects for engineers.
- Learn what regions and cities within the province have a good outlook.
Explore job potential by province and region
It’s also important to look at labour market conditions at the provincial level first. And then you can assess the job outlook at the regional level. Using this approach, you’ll get a clear picture of the best cities in Canada for engineering jobs.
For example, you may find the provincial job outlook is fair or Limited. However, you may find regions within the province where the outlook is good. And that means you can find more job opportunities by looking at both the provincial and regional outlook.
So to better understand how to use the LMI, we’ll take a closer look at the labour market conditions for a Civil Engineer. You can click on the links to find information about the role and labour market needs.
Example: Job outlook for Civil Engineer (NOC: 2131)
Job Description and Summary: Civil Engineer
Opportunities across Canada: Varies (Good, Fair)
Based on this information, the job opportunities for a Civil Engineer vary from Fair to Good across Canada. And, even where the outlook is rated as fair, you need to dig deeper. You will likely find regions within the province that have a Good outlook.
However, a good approach would be to start with the provinces that have a Good outlook for Civil Engineers, such as the province of New Brunswick.
Provincial Labour Market Outlook: New Brunswick (Good)
There are also several regions within New Brunswick that have a Good outlook.
And when you dig deeper this research can give you an advantage in your job search. So it’s important to consider both the provincial and the regional outlook.
Regional Labour Market Outlook:
There are several cities within New Brunswick that have a Good job outlook including:
- Moncton, and
- St. John
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4. Factors that influence the job outlook for engineers in Canadian cities
Factors that contribute to the number of engineering jobs that are available in Canadian cities include the:
- Projected employment growth for the city or region
- Number of jobs that are available due to changing demographics (for example Canada’s aging population means engineers will be retiring from the workforce over the next decade).
- Number of people that are available to work
- Supply of available engineers with relevant designations and experience.
So it’s important to consider all of this information. Because with this information you’ll likely make your job search much easier when you arrive. And you can easily begin by using the information and links provided here to conduct further research. To learn more about engineering in Canada, be sure to download our free ebook for helpful resources and information.
- To identify the best cities in Canada for engineering jobs, you need to research what jobs are in demand.
- You can search for information about engineering labour needs by using the four digit NOC code for your engineering type. Find your NOC here.
- The Government of Canada provides important labour market information that will help you to understand job market conditions for engineering jobs. And, this is a great starting point to find out what provinces have a good, or fair job outlook. You can even check out Rentals for Newcomers to find housing and understand average rental prices in Canada. This will help you to measure if housing prices are aligned to labour market information including average wages.
With a rapidly aging population in Canada, job vacancies will likely increase in many great Canadian cities over the next decade. And, with the right skills, designations, and experience you can be on your way to building your engineering career in Canada.
For more information, tools, resources, and free webinars visit finding a job in Canada. Get the help you need to achieve your career goals in Canada!