Waterloo Region Jobs Growth Driven by Finance, Public Administration, and Food Service

Ian McLean, President & CEO

Ian McLean, President & CEO

According to StatsCan Waterloo Region’s unemployment rate as of March 2015 dropped to 5.7% from 6.9% year-over-year. That drop represents thousands of new jobs and millions of dollars in economic growth in our community. According to a Workforce Planning Board of Waterloo Wellington Dufferin, the industries that are pushing this job growth in Kitchener, Waterloo, and Woolwich Township in 2014 were Finance and Insurance, Public Administration, and Accommodation and Food Services.

In 2014 alone, Kitchener, Waterloo, and Woolwich saw 22,761 job postings online with sales & service, trades, transportation, finance & administration, and natural & applied sciences making up the majority of those jobs posted.

Manufacturing Job Numbers Remain Strong as Financial Services and Insurance Strengthen

Much has been made of manufacturing jobs disappearing in Ontario. While as a general trend there has been a decrease in Manufacturing jobs in Waterloo Region over the past 30 years, the number of Manufacturing jobs has remained stable from 2013-2014 with only a 1% decrease in Manufacturing positions.

Meanwhile, Financial Services and Insurance related jobs have jumped nearly 10% in the same time period for a positive increase of 946 jobs between the two industries. The jobs that were created were also jobs with strong earning potential as the average earnings in the finance and insurance industry in the area is $56,333. These positions have an

Construction and Public Administration Jobs See Strong Growth

The ongoing construction of the Light Rail Transit and additional infrastructure upgrades in the Region has also brought positive employment numbers in the industry to the Region. The number of construction cranes in the Kitchener-Waterloo skyline is a testament to the level of private construction in our community and the long term potential for additional construction jobs in 2015.

Public Administration jobs also saw a 10% increase in 2014, but remains out of the top 10 industries in our community by employment numbers. These types of jobs also have a strong multiplier effect for retailers, entertainment, and restaurants in the area.

Waterloo Region’s Economy Remains Highly Diversified

What makes Waterloo Region one of the best communities to live, work, and play is our diversity. This extends all the way to our economy as well. Manufacturing remains the largest industry in Kitchener, Waterloo, and Woolwich Township by number of jobs, followed closely by Educational Services, Health Care and Social Assistance, Retail, Construction, Finance and Insurance, and Professional, Scientific and Technical Services.

Together these industries saw an increase in the number of jobs in the Region from 2013 to 2014. We are encouraged by these job numbers as Ontario manufacturing will benefit from a lower Canadian dollar and cheaper oil prices.