Outlooks Methodology

How are employment outlooks displayed on Explore Careers?

Employment outlooks are displayed on Explore Careers, where possible, for each occupation. Occupations receive an outlook of either Good, Average, Limited, or Undetermined.

What do the employment outlooks mean?

Good: This indicates that the short-to-medium-term potential for a qualified individual finding work is better than average when compared to other occupations in Nova Scotia. This situation is most favorable for job seekers and may be associated with a lack of qualified or experienced labour, high turnover, low unemployment rates, above average employment growth, high projected retirement rates, very specific job requirements, and/or a lack of interest by the available labour force, etc.

Average: This indicates that the short-to-medium-term potential for a qualified individual finding work is comparable to the average for all occupations in Nova Scotia. This situation is associated with an average or greater demand for labour and supply of qualified labour that is very similar to estimated needs.

Limited: This indicates in the short-to-medium-term the potential for employment is below average when compared to other occupations in Nova Scotia. This situation is often associated with a small number of people employed in the occupation in Nova Scotia, slow or declining projected employment growth, weakness in related industry activity, and/or higher levels of unemployment, etc. This is a more challenging situation for job seekers and may indicate the labour supply in Nova Scotia exceeds the estimated number of employment opportunities for the outlook period.

Undetermined: This indicates that employment outlooks were not determined for this occupation. In some cases, employment outlooks may not have been determined for occupations where there was insufficient data or too few workers in the occupation in Nova Scotia to determine an outlooks, where employment opportunities in the occupations are often dependent on other factors such as appointment, election, talent or entrepreneurship, or where types of jobs included within the occupation vary greatly from each other making it challenging to determine outlooks (for example: some occupations that begin with “Other”).

For what time period are the employment outlooks valid?

The employment outlooks represent a three-year period. For example, current employment outlooks cover the period of 2016 through 2018.

When are employment outlooks updated on the Explore Careers website?

Employment outlooks are reviewed and updated annually.

How are employment outlooks determined?

The outlooks at the provincial level are determined using a standard approach developed by Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) and the Service Canada Regional LMI Network.

What are the main sources of information used in determining outlooks?

The main sources of information used in developing employment outlooks include the following:

  1. Census/National Household Survey (Statistics Canada)
  2. Labour Force Survey (Statistics Canada)
  3. Canadian Occupational Projections System (ESDC)
  4. E-Data from the Conference Board of Canada
  5. Employment Insurance administrative data (ESDC)

What are the key labour market indicators used to determine employment outlooks?

The key labour market indicators include:

  1. Employment growth rate, which is measured by impacts of industrial growth on employment in which the occupation is found. Trends affecting the progression of employment by occupation within these industries may also be considered.
  2. Index of experienced unemployed workers available at the beginning of the projection period, which is measured by the proportion of Employment Insurance beneficiaries over total employment, adjusted by average length of benefits.
  3. Attrition rate which is measured by the proportion of projected retirements, deaths, and other attrition over total employment. This rate is related to the age structure within an occupation.
  4. Net needs which are measured by the sum of employment growth and attrition, less the experienced unemployed workers available at the beginning of the period, divided by the projected average employment for the occupation.

What are the data sources for the key facts?

Employment level: estimated by ESDC from Labour Force Survey data. When the provincial level of employment for an occupation falls below the dissemination threshold for the LFS, the level is established using data from the 2011 National Household Survey (Statistics Canada).

Industries of employment: estimated by ESDC and Service Canada.

Nature of work, other considerations, and skills: these facts come from the 2016 National Occupation Classification as well as input from local industry associations, regulatory bodies, sector councils and other related occupational organizations.