Lost Opportunities: Measuring the Unrealized Value of Skill Vacancies in Canada

The Conference Board of Canada, 20 pages, March 2, 2022
Issue Briefing by ,
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This issue briefing looks at the economic cost to Canada of being unable to fill all the demand for skills.

Document Highlights

  • When an employer is looking to fill a vacant job, what they are really looking for is a set of skills to complete a series of tasks. The unrealized value of skill vacancies in the Canadian economy hit $25 billion in 2020. Measured as a share of the economy, this unrealized value equalled 1.33 per cent of GDP.
  • The six most highly valued skill vacancies are active listening, critical thinking, reading comprehension, speaking, monitoring, and coordination. Vacancies related to each of these skills currently cost the Canadian economy $1 billion or more annually in unrealized value owing to unfilled job vacancies.
  • Providing valuations of these costs among the occupations allows policy-makers and educators to prioritize investments.

Table of Contents

Key Findings
Valuing Skill Vacancies
Policies Should Focus on Skill “Sets”
Next Steps
Appendix A—Methodology
Appendix B—Bibliography

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