Build and refine the best Human Resources practices for managing your teams.

You need to understand the current business environment, but you also need to know what’s changing. Data from across Canadian industries and regions will help you see where you excel and where you can grow. We crunch the numbers for you, and provide digestible information so you can make quick decisions.

  • How do you compare with your peers and competitors?
  • How do you measure up?
  • What’s Canada up to?


Over 200 organizations across Canada gave us the following key highlights.


Voluntary (or employee-initiated) turnover in 2021.


Involuntary (or employer-initiated) turnover in 2021.


Average number of days/year an employee is absent.


Percentage of organizations offering flex time.


Percentage of workforce that are HR employees.


Average number of employees each leader supervises or manages.


Spent on training and development per employee.


Percentage of vacant roles.


Number of days it took to fill a vacant role.


Employees promoted in 2021 (6% were transferred).

Data pulled from our 2021 HR Metrics survey. Note: voluntary turnover rates varied greatly by industry, sector, and region.

Interested in a benchmarking report customized to your organization?

Recent and Upcoming Research

Watch for our updates on related HR topics. These monthly releases will break down information by region and industry:

Total Rewards (October 2022)

Compensation and total rewards are key to attracting and retaining high-quality talent. However, most organizations (89.9 per cent) that participated in this survey pay at the 50th percentile (p50) for base salary (89.9 per cent).

Online experience  |  8-min read
October 3, 2022

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Absenteeism (October 2022)

In 2021, the average employee absence rate (7.3 days) was lower than that in 2020 (9.9 days). This decrease may be a result of widespread vaccination efforts, reduced isolation requirements, and many workers’ ability to work from home even when unwell. Unlimited sick days were offered by 19 per cent of non-unionized organizations—an increase of 5 per cent over last year—and by 11 per cent of unionized organizations—consistent with the previous year—in fiscal 2021. Providing more paid time off may increase retention.

Online experience  |  8-min read
October 3, 2022

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Organizational Design (September 2022)

As companies adapt to changing business and employee demands, there is no one-size-fits-all approach to workplace practices across Canadian organizations. In fiscal 2021, organizations had a variety of standard workweeks, and 30 per cent had different standard workweeks for different levels or types of employees (e.g., front-line workers working shift work, office employees working eight-hour days).

Online experience  |  8-min read
September 1, 2022

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Learning & Development (August 2022)

Training and development rank as one of the most important employee considerations when choosing to accept a new position or stay with an organization. For instance, one study found that 94 per cent of employees would stay with a company longer if their company invested in their career development. Another study found that 37 per cent of employees would consider leaving their organization if training and development were not offered, while 79 per cent indicated that training opportunities are important when job searching.

Issue briefing  |  9-min read
August 18, 2022

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Health and Safety (July 2022)

Workplace safety incidents have increased since 2020. This rise may be due in part to more employees returning to in-person work, meaning greater chances of workplace exposure incidents that result in lost-time claims.

Online experience  |  8-min read
July 27, 2022

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Recruitment (July 2022)

Labour markets are extremely tight due to an increasing number of retirements, low levels of immigration, labour shortages, and historically low unemployment. This is creating intense competition for talent. Despite a decrease in overall turnover rates in the 2021 fiscal year, survey results show that certain industries are experiencing alarming rates of voluntary turnover, with drastic variation based on region, industry, and sector.

Issue briefing  |  9-min read
July 8, 2022

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Turnover (June 2022)

In 2021, average voluntary turnover decreased from previous years. However, voluntary turnover rates varied greatly by industry, sector, and region, ranging from 3 to 22 per cent. Select industries—particularly retail and scientific, professional, or technical industries—are experiencing the Great Attrition. In these industries, more than one in six employees changed roles.

Online experience  |  8-min read
June 7, 2022

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November 2022


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Month XX, 2022

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December 2022


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Month XX, 2022

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Further Insights

COVID-19 and lockdowns in 2020 provided volatile conditions for employees and employers. The COVID-19 pandemic caused a sharp contraction in economic activity in Canada. Roughly 3 million Canadians lost their employment in March and April 2020, and millions more worked reduced hours. The unemployment rate peaked at in May 2020 but recovered over the second half of that year as the economy tentatively reopened.

Data briefing  |  12-min read
January 14, 2022

Emerging Trends (May 2022)

The last two years have changed the way we work and has made us reconsider ways of working, both from an employer and an employee point-of-view. While we know things have changed, data on how this is impacting workplaces is still quite sparse. This episode we hear how the Conference Board of Canada’s Human Capital team is working to fill in the gaps in HR trends and metrics.

We explore: what’s really happening with Canada’s “great resignation”; how to approach employee engagement; why some companies are adjusting their engagement strategies to deal with current and future challenges; and how where you work (remote, onsite or hybrid) is impacting these key metrics. These trends provide critical insights into the workforce and workplace of the future.

Podcast  |  13-min listen
Lauren Florko—May 18, 2022

Health and Safety (April 2022)

Nearly one quarter of organizations do not have a short-term disability program in place for their employees. Culture plays a key role in the mental and physical well-being of employees. By promoting safety and demonstrating leadership, organizations are working minimize health and safety risks and encourage wellness.

Online experience  |  2-min read
April 6, 2022

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Absence (March 2022)

Larger organizations (5,000+ employees) had significantly higher absenteeism than smaller organizations. This may be a sign that employees in smaller organizations were striving to cover disruptions and may be languishing (the opposite of flourishing) or engaging in presenteeism.

Online experience  |  2-min read
March 1, 2022

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Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (February 2022)

Despite identifying diversity, equity, and inclusion as top priorities many organizations are still not tracking these metrics. Only 44 per cent of organizations surveyed tracked representation across equity-deserving groups, and only 30 per cent conducted pay equity analyses. Some organizations are expanding how they view and track diversity and considering ways to measure inclusion.

Online experience  |  2-min read
February 28, 2022

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Engagment (January 2022)

Most organizations measure employee engagement—and for good reason. An engaged workforce is a win-win for employees and employers. Engaged employees feel that they have a sense of purpose, enjoy their job and colleagues, and would recommend their organization to others. Engagement translates to increased sales, better customer satisfaction, greater productivity, and greater employee retention—leading to better financials overall.

Issue briefing  |  10-min read
January 27, 2022

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Turnover (December 2021)

In fiscal 2020, voluntary turnover was higher than expected, likely due to the unique stressors of COVID-19, early retirements, and talent shortages. The highest rates of voluntary turnover were seen at the management and professional job levels and in industries that provided scientific, professional, or technical services.

Online experience  |  3-min read
December 3, 2021

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Respondent Profiles

A total of 153 organizations participated in this survey. Discover more about them.

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