British Columbia's Quality Workforce
British Columbia offers a high quality, diverse labour pool that is constantly being replenished by immigration and graduates of B.C.'s many universities and colleges
- Qualified workers are drawn to British Columbia for its high standard of living and quality of life.
- Canadian and B.C. government policies encourage immigration of people with business and employment-related skills that provide Vancouver with a talented and diverse labour pool with strong international connections.
- Between 2006 and 2011, BC's working aged population (15-64) grew by 7.1%. The lower mainland had the largest rate of increase at 9.5%, more than 160,000 people (May 2012).
- The unemployment rate in BC is the fourth lowest in Canada at 7.0%. Employment growth in BC (1.3%) is the fourth highest in Canada (October 2012).
- B.C. offers over 1,900 programs at 11 universities, 11 colleges and 3 institutes. B.C. universities consistently receive high marks in the World University rankings, with the University of B.C. placing 22nd in the world in 2012.
- There are seven new B.C. public university campuses since 2001: Thompson Rivers University, Capilano University, University of the Fraser Valley, Vancouver Island University, Kwantlen Polytechnic University, Emily Carr University of Art + Design, and the University of British Columbia Okanagan (April 2012).
A Diversified Labour Market
- In Vancouver, the four leading immigrant home languages accounted for more than half (57.7) of the overall population speaking an immigrant language most often at home.
- In British Columbia, 26.5% reported a non-official language as a mother tongue, higher than the Canadian average of 19.8%.
- There is a continuous supply of new entrants to the workforce to replace those exiting. From April 2012 to June 2012, BC had a net inflow of 11,493 people from outside Canada.
- The British Columbia Provincial Nominee Program helps fast-track recruitment of highly skilled foreign workers and business entrepreneurs. Read more about the program here.
Return to top of page