SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Elizabeth White, Pat Romanski, Carmen Gonzalez, Liz McMillan, Kevin Jackson

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Canadian Workers Cautiously Optimistic About Job Market, Economy in 2014

Employers, employees to ask more of each other in the coming year to improve business results and job satisfaction

TORONTO, Jan. 23, 2014 /CNW Telbec/ - While 2013 ended on a down note, with the loss of 48,000 jobs across Canada in December, a new study conducted by Ipsos-Reid on behalf of Randstad Canada shows that Canadian workers are entering 2014 with a cautiously optimistic outlook for the job market and economy overall this year.

The Randstad Canada Labour Trends Study 2014, polling 2,076 Canadian employees and managers across the country on their expectations for the coming year, revealed that three-in-ten respondents (30%) said they feel more confident in the strength of the Canadian economy heading into 2014 than they were entering 2013, while another 50% said they felt about the same amount of confidence heading into this year as they did last. Those in Alberta (35%) and British Columbia (32%) were the most confident in the strength of the Canadian economy heading into 2014, while those in Quebec (27%) and Atlantic Canada (22%) were the least.

Canadians Split About Confidence in the Job Market
While nearly half (48%) of the 2,076 Canadians polled said they feel about the same amount of confidence in the job market in 2014 as they did in 2013, those that do feel differently than last year are decidedly split. While one-quarter (25%) of respondents felt more confident in the job market heading into this year, slightly more (27%) said they actually feel less confident this year than they did at the beginning of last year.

Respondents working in a managerial or executive position are significantly more confident (30.3%) than their below-manager counterparts (19.2%). Younger workers (under the age of 35) are also much more confident in the job market this year (30.5%) than those who are well into their careers (35-54 - 21.9%).

As with expectations for the strength of the economy, those living in Western Canada (British Columbia and Alberta) are substantially more confident in the job market this year (30.4% and 31.3% respectively) than those on the East Coast and in Quebec (18.1% and 23.3% respectively). In fact, those living in Atlantic Canada (33.8%) and Ontario (31.9%) are the most likely to feel less confident in the job market in 2014 than they were in 2013.

"While 2013 may not stand out in anyone's mind as a banner year for the Canadian job market or the economy overall, it is encouraging to see even cautious optimism from both employees and employers about this year's prospects on both fronts," says Tom Turpin, President, Randstad Canada.

One-Third of Canadians Will Look for a New Job in 2014
Of those polled, one-third (33%) said they expect it will be more difficult to find a new job in 2014 than it was in 2013, with only one-in-five (20%) expecting it be an easier task than last year. Even so, three-in-ten (31%) currently employed Canadians say they are likely to personally look for a new job in 2014.

Women in particular are more concerned with ease of mobility between jobs this year - while nearly half feel that their prospects of finding a new job will be about the same as 2013, almost two-in-five (38%) feel it will be more difficult for job seekers to find a new job this year than it was last.

Regionally, Albertans are the most confident when it comes to finding new jobs, with one-third feeling it will be easier to do so in 2014 than it was in 2013. Ontarians are the most pessimistic in Canada, with more than 40% anticipating finding a new job in 2014 will be more difficult than last year.

Younger workers (under 35) are much more likely to look for a new job in 2014 - nearly half (46.5%) intend to look this year, compared to three-in-ten (31%) overall. Workers in Ontario (35%), Alberta (33%) and BC (33%) are the most likely to look for a new job in 2014, while those in Quebec (24%) are the least likely.

A Better Bottom-Line Expected in 2014 - for Companies and Employees Alike
Canadians are especially optimistic when it comes to their organizations' performance in the coming year. Nearly nine-in-ten (89%) of those polled expect their company/employer to perform better (37%) or about the same (52%) financially this year when compared to 2013, with only 11% anticipating a worse year financially in 2014. Those in managerial and executive positions (45%) are much more likely to expect their organization's to perform better financially in 2014 than employees (29%).

As Canadians expect their companies to perform better, they also expect to receive a bigger paycheck themselves. More than half (51%) of those polled said they expect to receive a raise in 2014, with those in Quebec (58%) and Alberta (57%) feeling much more confident in receiving a salary increase than those in Ontario (46%) or British Columbia (48%).

Both employers and employees expect to ask more of each other in 2014
Canadian employers (managers and executives) say that, in order for them to contribute to their organization's success in 2014, their employees need to expect greater demands on productivity (65%), greater expectations for better results with budgets similar to or below 2013 levels (64%) and greater expectations for new tasks as a part of their everyday roles (61%). Those in Atlantic Canada (77%) and Alberta (72%) especially expect increased productivity by their employees to be in greater demand in the coming year.

While managers and executives will expect more from their employees in 2014, workers are also expecting employers to bring more to the table this year. Those polled said that, in order to contribute to their employees' job satisfaction, employers will need to provide better performance incentives and financial rewards (45%), better work-life balance (42%), and better training and development opportunities for employees (39%) in 2014.

''What these results tell us is that both employees and managers keep a watchful eye on the market's progress this year, and how it will contribute to better their professional and personal lives," says Turpin. "Given the opportunities and challenges they perceive, it will be critical for job seekers, employees, and employers to set clear expectations on their needs and requirements in order to foster productivity, growth and engagement in Canadian workplaces.''

Survey Methodology: These are the results of a survey conducted by Ipsos-Reid Public Affairs on behalf of Randstad Canada. A total sample of 2,076 employed Canadians was interviewed via Ipsos' online panel, including n= 800 managers/employers and n= 1,276 generally employed Canadians. The survey was conducted between December 20th and 29th, 2013. The survey is considered accurate to +/- 2.5 percentage points of all employed Canadians, +/-4 percentage points of all Canadians in a managerial role and +/-3.1 percentage points of all Canadians working in a non-managerial role.

About Randstad Canada: Randstad Canada is the Canadian leader for staffing, recruitment and HR Services. As the only fully integrated staffing company in the country, we understand the recruitment needs and demands of employers and job seekers across all levels and industries. Through our insightful knowledge of local markets, employment trends and global network of recruitment experts, we are shaping the Canadian world of work. Visit randstad.ca

SOURCE Randstad Canada

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