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Job market survey reveals plans for new permanent positions, skills shortage challenges, and strategies to attract and retain top talent

The Canadian job market is expected to maintain its resilience as we head into 2024, according to new research from talent solutions and business consulting firm Robert Half.

The company’s State of Hiring Survey revealed that 54 percent of hiring managers have plans to create new permanent positions in the first six months of the year, with an additional 40 percent aiming to fill vacated roles.

David King Senior Managing Director at Robert Half, Canada and South America

David King
Senior Managing Director at Robert Half, Canada and South America


Among managers looking to expand their hiring efforts, over six in 10 (61 percent) identified company growth as the primary factor influencing their hiring decisions for the first half of 2024. A significant number (50 percent) cited a shortage of required skills among current employees as a driving factor. Moreover, capitalizing on top talent from other companies and addressing employee turnover were tied, with 48 percent of hiring managers considering these factors in their hiring plans. Additionally, 77 percent of those who had to postpone projects in 2023 indicated their intent to proceed with previously delayed initiatives.

While an increase in hiring is anticipated, finding the right talent may prove challenging, according to the research. The survey found that 89 percent of organizations reported difficulty locating skilled professionals, and 64 percent of managers noted that hiring for open positions now takes longer than a year ago.

Other challenges expected in 2024 include:

  1. Insufficient applicants with the required skills (53 percent)
  2. Ensuring a quick hiring process to secure top talent (49 percent)
  3. Meeting candidates’ salary expectations (48 percent)

“The first quarter of the year typically brings newly approved projects and budgets,” said David King, Senior Managing Director at Robert Half, Canada and South America. “Combined with company growth plans and persistent skills gaps in the labour market, employers must adopt strategic approaches to attract and retain top talent, addressing staffing requirements and fulfilling business needs.”

With hiring challenges continuing in the Canadian job market, organizations are also concerned about retaining skilled professionals and maintaining their productivity. Survey results revealed that 90 percent of managers expressed concerns about retaining top talent, while 87 percent were worried about keeping their teams motivated and engaged.

King emphasized the importance of this concern: “While expanding teams will be a significant focus for companies in the coming year, managers must also prioritize the needs and well-being of their existing staff to enhance retention and productivity. Regular compensation and benefit audits are crucial to remaining competitive, and offering perks such as flexibility can help reduce turnover.”

| Staff

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