CURRENT LANDSCAPE

12,530 ICT professionals are employed in Saskatchewan in early 2015. Of them, 2,000 are youth aged 25 or younger, 2,060 are nearing retirement, 4,030 are women, and 2,810 are immigrants. In addition, 5,500 work in Regina, 4,470 work in Saskatoon, and another 2,560 work in the rest of the province. Industries outside the ICT sector are major users of ICT products and services. The demand for top ICT talent continues to grow and has resulted in expanding career options for ICT professionals, placing competitive pressure on the employers seeking technical ICT talent. Among employed ICT professionals, 5,030 work in the ICT sector, while 7,500 work in other sectors (e.g. energy, health).

As the current ICT workforce ages, not many youth are opting for ICT careers, leaving a void that could potentially limit Saskatchewan’s future competitiveness before long. Significantly fewer youth work in ICT professions than in other jobs. In contrast, ICT professions have a greater proportion of workers in the older age groups compared to the total provincial workforce.

ICT Employment

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Source: ICTC; Statistics Canada

 

FUTURE OUTLOOK

Under three economic scenarios over a 5-year horizon, a combination of employment growth and replacement requirements produces estimates of cumulative hiring requirements. Under a baseline scenario, over 1,800 new ICT jobs are expected to be created in Saskatchewan by 2019. It is projected that the availability of homegrown ICT talent will not be sufficient to meet these hiring requirements. Combined with replacement demand due to retirements and other exits, Saskatchewan would need to fill 3,900 ICT positions over the next five years. By 2019, cumulative hiring requirements for ICT talent are expected to be over 1,400 in Regina, 1,100 in Saskatoon, and 1,300 in rest of Saskatchewan.

Projected hiring requirements to 2019 by municipality

Employment in 2015 Cumulative hiring requirements to 2019
Regina 5,500 1,471
Saskatoon 4,470 1,100
Saskatchewan – other 2,560 1,316
Total 12,530 3,888
Source: ICTC, 2015

 

Under a contractionary scenario, hiring requirements are projected to decline to 3,300 compared to the baseline scenario hiring requirements of 3,900. Alternatively, in an expansionary scenario, Saskatchewan employers will need to hire 5,300 ICT professionals. This outlook underscores the significance of accessing all available talent to address the demand-supply imbalance in ICT professions.

Projected hiring requirements to 2019 by scenario

Scenario Cumulative hiring requirements
to 2019
Contractionary 3,318
Baseline 3,888
Expansionary 5,374
Source: ICTC, 2015

 

Demand-supply imbalances will affect some ICT occupations more than others. As a result of employment growth – combined with replacement demand due to skills mismatch, retirements, and other exits – Saskatchewan would need to fill the following ICT positions:

  • 480 graphic designers and illustrators
  • 330 electrical and electronics engineering technologists and technicians
  • 310 software engineers
  • 310 computer and network operators and web technicians
  • 280 systems testing technicians
  • 270 computer engineers
  • 270 database analysts and data administrators
  • 250 electrical and electronics engineers
  • 230 user support technicians