Talent and Labour Force

The Edmonton region includes a large, skilled labour force with the education and experience to help you grow your business.

A sustainable and growing talent pool

The talent in the Edmonton region is skilled and ready. We are one of the youngest regions in the country and have been ranked as the best community in the country for youth work according to the Urban Work Index.

  • The Edmonton region is Canada’s fifth largest metro region
  • In 2018, our region’s annual labour force was over 837,000 people.
  • More than 4,000 corporations have chosen the Edmonton region as the Canadian base for their company’s senior management – 420 of those are headquartered in Alberta.

Post-secondary institutions

With eight post-secondary institutions in the region and 130,000 enrolled students, businesses have access to the talent they need, when they need it.

89% of employers in Alberta are highly satisfied with the skills and work quality of post-secondary graduates.

Regional institutions

Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM)

Our province is the fourth largest supplier of STEM graduates in the country. From 2012 to 2016:

  • more than 40,900 students graduated from Alberta’s postsecondary with a STEM degree
  • more than 91,600 students enrolled in STEM programs and over 20,300 STEM graduates completed their program
  • of those STEM graduates, more than 2,600 specialized in fields related to: Advanced Manufacturing, AI, Automation and Robotics, Big Data, Cyber Security, Telecommunications and ICT

Training

Industry connectivity

All regional institutions have strong connections with local businesses and industries.

Northern Alberta Institute of Technology

NAIT conducts surveys with local employers to ensure that their programs align with industry needs and 94% of their current research projects partner with industry.

University of Alberta

At the University of Alberta, an engineering co-op partners over 1,400 students with employers each year to help them gain real-world experience.

Grants

The Canada-Alberta Job Grant is a training program where an employer applies on behalf of their employee(s) for eligible training costs. The government will supply up anywhere from 60% to 100% of the costs depending on the circumstances.

Talent in the Edmonton region

Our region's international appeal

Studying here

Canada attracts millions of international students each year. Canadian universities saw a 25% increase in international applications in 2017-2018 and Canada now ranks as the world’s 4th most popular destination for international students.

Top reasons international students choose to study in Canada

  1. The quality of the Canadian education system
  2. Canada’s reputation as a tolerant and non-discriminatory society
  3. Canada’s reputation as a safe country

Immigrating here

First generation newcomers make up 23% of the Edmonton region’s population, creating diverse, welcoming and vibrant communities and workplaces.

Canada’s robust immigration system has allowed people from around the world to make our region their home, bringing unique talents and expertise to our growing economy.

Global Skills Strategy

The Government of Canada’s Global Skills Strategy makes it easier for businesses to attract the talent needed to succeed in the global marketplace. The strategy features faster application processing times, work permit exemptions, and enhanced customer service.

Global Talent Stream

The Global Talent Stream allows employers to bring top international talent to Canada quickly. Eligible foreign workers with employer-approved applications can receive work permits within two weeks.

Post-Graduate Work Permits for International Students

The program provides an open work permit, which allows international graduates to work for any Canadian employer in any industry without the requirement of a Canadian job offer at the time of applying.

Webinar: Attracting & retaining international talent for your business