Job search site Grand Erie Jobs had a busy first year, with 26,000 jobs listed from 5,000 businesses.
The region’s job market saw many ups and downs due to the pandemic during Grand Erie Jobs’ first year, July 1, 2020 to June 30, 2021, but local businesses were on the lookout for employees throughout the year.
July 2020 saw about 1,700 postings on the job search site, with increased numbers in the following months until postings dipped to 1,200 in December. Things rebounded steadily in 2021, with June setting a new monthly high for job postings with 2,900. July has maintained that high.
The ups and down show COVID-19’s impact: businesses opening, closing, reopening, re-closing for short stints.
About 5,000 businesses and organizations of all sizes and types in Brantford, Six Nations, New Credit, and the counties of Haldimand, Norfolk and Brant, advertised job openings during Grand Erie Jobs’ first year.
Grand Erie Jobs has become the largest, most comprehensive job search site in the area, and that benefits job seekers and employers.
Top Skills Requested
Many of the top skills employers were looking for involved the ability to work with people and deal with problems: customer service, attention to detail, organization, interpersonal skills, problem solving and time management. Many employers were also looking for management and sales related experience.
Job applicants could improve their hiring chances by demonstrating that they have these skills and experience.
Top jobs advertised by job title on Grand Erie Jobs: Material Handler, General Labourer, General Farm Labourer, Customer Service Representative, Personal Support Worker, Forklift Operator and Sales Associate.
But there were hundreds of different occupations listed, everything from Sales Manager to Pharmacist, University Lecturer, Carpenter, Dental Assistant, Transport Truck Driver and Tax Arrears Collector.
Employers in every sector of the economy, from Construction to Health Care to Manufacturing, were looking to hire at some point.
Top Companies Hiring
The Brant County Healthcare System, which operates Brantford General Hospital and The Willett Urgent Care Centre in Paris, was the No. 1 advertiser of jobs that appeared on Grand Erie Jobs. The hospital system employs more than 2,000 people.
Other top public-sector employers included: Grand Erie District School Board, Brant Haldimand Norfolk Catholic District School Board, Norfolk County, Six Nations of the Grand River Elected Band Council, Norfolk General Hospital and Wilfrid Laurier University.
Top private-sectors employers included Lowe’s, VON Canada, Aspire Bakeries (formerly known as ARYZTA), VG Meats and DHL Supply Chain.
Job openings in certain fields were particularly hard to fill. This was true for jobs in agriculture, in industrial and construction trades, and for home support workers.
The large majority of jobs advertised over the last year on Grand Erie Jobs, 86% or better, were full-time, permanent positions. This dispels a commonly heard complaint that employers only want to hire people part-time or on short-term contracts.
There are reports from across Canada that there’s a labour shortage as businesses struggle to find people to fill positions.
There are some signs of that in the Grand Erie region. There are also signs that fewer people are using free employment services offered by Employment Ontario agencies.
Some workers are sitting on the sidelines and taking a wait-and-see approach to the job market, due to uncertainty over the pandemic.
In some cases, people are taking a pause while they consider their next moves: Do they want to go back to the same job? Do they want to switch careers? Do they want to go into training or back to school?
Employment Ontario agencies can help people answer these questions.
It is expected that more people will get back into the job market in the Fall, after school resumes. Some residents may be hesitant to commit to a job until they know with more certainty that in-class learning will be available for their children.
When people are ready to get back into the job market, the Grand Erie Jobs will be an essential tool they can use.