Employment outlook survey findings for the fourth quarter of 2012

According to the Flash-Emploi CRHA newsletter, published by the Ordre des conseillers en ressources humaines agréés, the employment outlook for Quebec appears to be relatively stable for the final quarter of 2012.

This quarterly survey, conducted in collaboration with AppEco Analytics, analysis, strategy and communication consultants, indicates how HR professionals expect the Quebec job market to develop in the near future. For this quarter, 255 respondents representing a total of 98,496 employees completed the survey. 

Organizations still seeking new employees

As in the previous quarter, employment prospects (at +23.2%) are expected to continue to grow over the next three months. What’s more, 30.0% of respondents anticipate they’ll have to step up their hirings from now to the end of 2012. From a regional perspective, figures for the Montreal (+31.3%) and Quebec City (+36.3%) areas are optimistic, while those for Montérégie (+6.0%, versus +31.7% in the preceding quarter) and the other regions in Quebec (+3.4% compared to +18.8% three months earlier) tend to be more pessimistic. At the same time, the net difference in expectations respecting hours worked amounts to +12.3%, representing a drop of 4.3 percentage points over the previous quarter.   

The end of the summer vacation period has definitely put more pressure on businesses to recruit new applicants. In fact, 56.7% of HR professionals plan to increase their recruitment efforts, versus 36.0% in the third quarter. Recruiting problems are more severe in the Montreal (+65.0%) and Quebec City (60.6%) regions.  

“As the Bank of Canada indicated in its latest survey, business development is currently cautious. In this context, the indices provided in the latest edition of the Flash-Emploi-CRHA newsletter are fairly encouraging. Quebec companies are maintaining their production pace and a number of them plan to hire even more employees to enable them to do so,” explained Florent Francoeur, CHRP, Ordre President and CEO.  

Salary increases in line with inflation

For the last quarter of 2012, most respondents (59%) expect salary increases to be comparable to inflation ‒ which was pegged at 1.9% at the time of the study ‒ while 29% anticipate raises will remain below inflation for a net difference of -17.1 percentage points. The outlook is somewhat more positive in large organizations (-12%), particularly in the public and parapublic sector (+26%). 

“It will be interesting to track this index in upcoming newsletters. The most recent salary rise forecasts indicate increased buying power for Quebec workers in 2013. We’ll just have to wait and see what organizations decide in this respect,” concluded Francoeur. 

Click here for the Flash-Emploi CRHA newsletter (in French only).

For an interview with Florent Francoeur, please contact Justine Delisle. 

Methodology
The indices presented in this quarterly newsletter are based on responses to a survey conducted from September 18 to October 7, 2012 among a random sample of members of the Ordre des conseillers en ressources humaines agréés (CRHA). In all, 255 respondents participated in this survey, representing a margin of error of 6.1%, 19 times out of 20. In the case of organizations with a number of Ordre members, only the response of the main HR manager was retained. The responses were weighted according to the size of the organization and were not seasonally adjusted. The total percentages may not always equal 100% due to rounding of values. The survey analysis was performed by AppEco Analytics, analysis, strategy and communication consultants. (www.appeco.ca).