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Labour shortages hurting Western Canadian small biz


April 25, 2013
By Canadian Garden Centre & Nursery

Apr. 25, 2013,
Toronto — The shortage of qualified labour across western Canada is
serious, wide-spread and having a major impact on the ability of
entrepreneurs to effectively and successfully run their businesses,
according to a new report from the Canadian Federation of Independent
Business.

CFIB surveyed 2,632 of its western Canadian members last August and September. The survey found:

  • Seventy-nine
    per cent of firms in western Canada have had difficulty hiring in the
    past three years, and 44 per cent expect it will only get more difficult
    in the next three years.
  • Salespeople (ranked first) and service staff (ranked fourth) are among the most difficult jobs for businesses to fill.
  • Labour
    shortages have affected business owners in a number of ways. A majority
    of owners is working more hours (71 per cent), while many others are
    increasing labour costs (59 per cent), reducing service and product
    offerings (53 per cent), dealing with high turnover and frequent
    retraining (48 per cent) and experiencing deteriorating customer service
    (48 percent) in their businesses as a result of the shortages.
  • In
    the past three years, business owners have hired someone who didn't
    meet the job requirements (66 per cent), functioned with fewer employees
    (65 per cent), increased salary and benefits (56 per cent), and ignored
    new business opportunities (51 per cent).

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