Nuclear’s Role Gets Reconsidered in the Clean Energy Equation

With global electricity demand on pace to double by 2030, the race is on for the world’s key energy players to find clean sources that will fuel their economies but also allow them to meet more aggressive carbon emissions targets. That race is inspiring a global rethink on nuclear power that is producing a variety of interesting results.

A growing sentiment that renewables can’t do it alone

Many nuclear energy supporters are raising awareness of their belief that while renewable energy sources like wind and solar can play an important role in the clean energy equation, Mother Nature’s unpredictability creates the need for backup energy sources. Today, that back up often comes from natural gas, which can detract from the carbon emissions advantages initially driven by wind and solar. Nuclear advocates point to Germany’s recent carbon emissions performance to illustrate their point. In 2016, despite a four per cent decrease in coal use and expansion of renewable energy sources, the country’s carbon emissions actually rose. The CO₂ emissions saved through the drop of coal use were offset by an increase in consumption of mineral oil and a 10 percent jump in the use of natural gas.

An opinion shift amongst environmentalists

The release of Robert Stone’s documentary, Pandora’s Promise, in 2013 was an important milestone in the nuclear power debate. The film positions nuclear energy as a key component in the fight to slow climate change. It was a stark contrast to Stone’s Oscar-nominated anti-nuclear documentary, Radioactive Bikini, that was released in 1987.

That same year, four of the world’s leading climate change scientists published an open letter encouraging anti-nuclear environmentalist groups to reconsider their views. The experts claimed that “Renewables like wind and solar and biomass will certainly play roles in a future energy economy, but those energy sources cannot scale up fast enough to deliver cheap and reliable power at the scale the global economy requires.” The letter went on to ask environmental organizations to demonstrate their real concern about risks from climate damage by calling for the development and deployment of advanced nuclear energy.

Tech Billionaires Set Their Sights on Nuclear’s Potential

While Bill Gates gets the most media attention for his support of nuclear energy, Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, Microsoft’s Paul Allen, and PayPal’s Peter Thiel are also on board. These high-profile tech investors believe that nuclear power is a wise choice for both the planet and their investment portfolio. Gates has put his money where his mouth is with his incubator TerraPower, which is working on a number of clean energy solutions including an approach to nuclear power that addresses real and perceived concerns about nuclear power due to cost, safety and waste. Gates has signed a joint venture agreement between TerraPower and China to create Global Innovation Nuclear Energy Technology, a company that will build and commercialize the Travelling Wave Reactor. This fourth-generation reactor will use waste uranium to generate energy and could operate without refueling for up to 40 years. This is just one example of how China is betting big on nuclear. It has set a goal of boosting its nuclear power capacity by about 70 percent to 58 gigawatts by 2020. Canada’s SNC–Lavalin also announced a joint venture with the China National Nuclear Corporation and Shanghai Electric Company in 2016 to build Advanced Fuel CANDU Reactors in China and internationally.

The UK gets it first new nuclear plant in over 20 years

In the United Kingdom, all eyes are on the Somerset Coast’s Hinkley Point C. The new nuclear power station being built there will be home to two European Pressurized Reactors (EPRs), which have been designed to generate more electricity from less fuel, require less downtime for maintenance, and reduce the risk of major accidents. The project, which is currently one of Europe’s largest building sites, is expected to be completed in 2025.

The Middle East hedges against oil dependence

The world’s big oil nations are also investing in nuclear as they diversify their energy strategies to keep up with increased demand for electricity. When it comes online in 2020, the Barakah Nuclear Energy Plant will provide a quarter of the UAE’s energy and save 12 million tons in carbon emissions each year. Saudi Arabia also has plans for 16 nuclear reactors over the next two decades that will supply 15 per cent of its power.

Canada stays the course

Nuclear energy isn’t a new path for Canada, where the $6 billion sector employs approximately 60,000 people. Canada has been a world leader in nuclear energy since the development of the first CANDU reactor in 1952. Canada is home to 19 of the world’s 446 operable nuclear reactors, which generate 16.6 per cent of the country’s electricity. The Bruce Power Nuclear Generating Station in Ontario is the largest operating nuclear power facility in the world, and has been delivering energy since 1977. Canada is also the world’s leading supplier of uranium and is home to the highest-grade uranium deposits in the world.

At The Ian Martin Group, we’re fortunate to have a team of nuclear energy sector staffing experts as we’ve been helping companies source nuclear talent for over 60 years. If you are a company looking for short- or long-term nuclear talent, connect with one of our Hiring Consultants today for a no-obligation discussion about your search strategy. If you are a job seeker interested in exploring new opportunities in the nuclear sector, explore our current listings.

In the House of the Rising Sun: OPG Trades Coal for Solar

In February of this year, Ontario watched as two giant smokestacks on the coast of Lake Erie were demolished in a controlled yet mighty dust cloud. More than just a spectacle, this destruction marks a significant turn for the way power is generated in Ontario. Now that the dust has settled on the site, Ontario Power Generation (OPG) has announced its plans to amp up its renewable energy capabilities by converting the former Nanticoke Generating Station into a solar power project. The move is a big step for the province towards clean, renewable energy sources, resulting in a drastic decrease in smog and air pollutants.

The former Nanticoke coal-fired generating station is getting a green facelift. (Ontario Power Generation Inc.)

The plant, which first came into service in 1972, was once the largest coal-fuelled power plant in North America. Come the end of 2019, the site will be transformed into Nanticoke Solar, a 200,000 panel, 44 MW solar farm that is a partnership between OPG, Sun Edison Canadian Construction LP, and the Six Nations of the Grand River.

Eliminating coal as a source of power is the largest action being taken to fight climate change. “At its peak, Nanticoke Generating Station was one of the largest air polluters in North America,” says Glenn Thibeault, Ontario’s Minister of Energy. “Ontario’s elimination of coal for electricity generation remains the single largest climate change initiative undertaken in North America and was the equivalent of taking up to seven million cars off of our roads.”

But climate change isn’t the only worry: smoggy skies also lead to many health problems for Ontarians. The burning of coal for electricity generation is a significant source of local and regional air pollution and mercury emissions. A 2005 independent study estimated that the total annual cost of coal-fired electricity, including health, financial and environmental costs, was $4.4 billion (2004$). In 2003, the Ontario government committed to eliminating all of its coal-powered generation plants in a phase out approach.

Nanticoke Solar is the Six Nations’ 10th green development initiative, and OPG’s 5th project with Indigenous communities. In addition to Nanticoke Solar, OPG has partnered with Indigenous communities on the Lac Seul Generating Station (in partnership with Lac Seul First Nation), the Lower Mattagami River Project (in partnership with Moose Cree First Nation), and the recently completed Peter Sutherland Sr. Generating Station (in partnership with Taykwa Tagamou Nation).

A fifth green development project between OPG and Indigenous communities is also in the works: Kiashke Zaaging Anishinaabek (KZA) / Gull Bay First Nation and OPG are codeveloping a microgrid that will offset diesel use in the remote KZA community. Currently, the KZA community’s energy supply is powered by diesel; the new microgrid project combines the use of solar, lithium-ion battery storage, and grid technology to reduce diesel use by approximately 100,000 litres each year, which equates to a reduction of approximately 340 tonnes of CO2 emissions annually.

Nanticoke Solar is expected to be up and running by Spring of 2019.

If you’d like to learn more about finding the right talent to help your organization reduce its carbon footprint, connect with an Ian Martin hiring expert or download our Insider’s Guide to Technical Recruitment. If you’re a job seeker interested in a career in clean tech, take a look at our current opportunities in the manufacturing, power, and nuclear sectors.

 

How You Can Tackle Houston’s Labor Shortage Head On

A recent article in Barron’s, “The Great Labor Crunch,” offers some pretty telling statistics about the talent crisis facing the U.S. right now, including:

“…with the economy in its ninth year of growth and another baby boomer retiring every nine seconds, the labor crunch is about to get much worse.”

“From 2017 to 2027, the nation faces a shortage of 8.2 million workers … the most substantial shortfall in at least 50 years.”

This labor shortage is even more severe in Texas. In the article, an operations manager from a Permian Basin oil company says, “It’s an emergency, a crisis actually. It’s causing major delays,” and goes on to add that he has never had such trouble finding and retaining good employees. His company now offers signing bonuses to workers that sign noncompete clauses to help improve retention.

The good news is that signing bonuses aren’t the only way to compete for talent during a labor shortage. Ian Martin has been helping companies source contract and full-time employees since 1957. Over that time, we’ve helped hundreds of companies thrive through labor shortages. Here are three of our surefire ways to rise above the competition when there is a war for talent going on in your city.

1. Stop posting job openings—start MARKETING them.

Want your company’s open positions to stand out from the competition on job boards? Think about the factors that matter most to potential employees and make these points the focus of your job ad. This blog post offers some easy tips on how to elevate your job ads.

2. Reach for the passive candidate goldmine.

It’s no longer good enough to post an opening on a job board and cross your fingers. According to LinkedIn research, 60 percent of the total candidate pool is passive. That means they aren’t looking for a new job but may be very open to offers.

Our Hiring Experts can help your company tap into this valuable pool of qualified talent. And check out this blog post for some creative suggestions for finding new ways to connect with passive candidates.

3. Treat your salaried AND contract employees in a way that makes them want to stay.

Keeping existing employees engaged reduces the chance of them leaving. Contract employees who feel like they aren’t treated as well as salaried peers may feel disengaged and opt for an opportunity with a different company.

Ian Martin’s Contractor Success Team increases retention and return rates of contract employees. Each contractor has access to a dedicated support team that is 100% focused on addressing any issues that arise related to their employment. Whether it’s a question about payroll, expense reimbursement, holiday time or income tax, Ian Martin contractors know that help is only a phone call, text, or email away.

Would you like more advice on how your company can come out on top in Houston’s job seeker’s market? As one of North America’s leading technical recruitment and project staffing firms, Ian Martin has an extensive network of over 500,000 talented candidates.

Get in touch with one of our Hiring Experts.

Focus on Clean Energy: Big Batteries = Big Business

The tricky part about relying on Mother Nature for clean energy is that the sun doesn’t always shine and the wind doesn’t always blow. There’s also the opposite end of that problem, when weather conditions create a “perfect storm” of energy production that creates more power than the grid actually needs. Without a solution to store that excess power, electrical utilities must release it to avoid power surges that can damage appliances and lead to power outages. While selling that power to other utilities is an option, on a day with ideal conditions for renewable power generation the demand for the power may be quite low. There have been times in Ontario, for example, when an electrical utility has actually had to pay another province or state to take their excess power.

Those types of situations have global energy stakeholders feeling very hopeful about the opportunities that rapidly advancing lithium ion battery technology are creating for energy storage. Large-scale battery “farms” allow power from clean energy sources to be stored when it’s available and saved for distribution when it is needed most.

In the fall of 2017, all eyes were on Tesla when Elon Musk committed to build a 100-megawatt lithium ion battery facility in South Australia in 100 days or provide it free of charge. Musk and his team delivered and the project, which pairs the world’s largest lithium ion battery with a nearby wind farm, has made South Australia a world leader in dispatchable renewable energy. The project can power 30,000 homes for up to an hour in the event of a blackout, but will probably be used more often to even out electricity supplies.

Being hailed by some as the energy sector’s next disruptive technology, the rapidly decreasing costs of battery storage could radically transform the power industry. Battery-pack costs decreased to less than $230 per kilowatt-hour in 2016, compared with almost $1,000 per kilowatt-hour in 2010, thanks in part to the growing market for batteries in the consumer goods and electric vehicle market.

Smaller scale energy storage is also driving growth in the battery industry. Home-based energy storage solutions, such as Tesla’s Powerwall, store solar energy collected through solar panels on the home and make it available on demand to power the home independently of the electrical grid.

Batteries aren’t the only way to store renewable energy. Other solutions include flywheels, fuel cells running on renewable hydrogen, and systems based on compressed air or pumped water. With more and more countries committing to phasing out coal-fired power, the global energy storage market is predicted to double six times between 2016 and 2030.

As the battery and energy storage market continues to grow, so too will the competition to secure the technical talent needed by the companies in this space. Electrical engineers, systems design engineers, software engineers, product managers, and field service technicians are just some of the positions these companies will require.

If you’re a job seeker interested in a career in clean tech, take a look at our current opportunities in the automotive, manufacturing,  power and nuclear sectorsIf you’d like to learn more about finding the right talent to help your organization reduce its carbon footprint, connect with an Ian Martin recruiter or download our Insider’s Guide to Technical Recruitment.

 

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Think Small: Could SMRs Be Nuclear Power’s Next Big Thing?

SMRs, or small modular reactors, have been creating buzz in the nuclear industry for some time now.  That buzz got noticeably louder in 2017 when Canadian Nuclear Laboratories (CNL), Canada’s premier nuclear science and technology organization, set the ambitious goal of establishing an SMR on its Chalk River site by 2026.

What is an SMR?

SMR stands for small modular reactor. An SMR is significantly smaller than a conventional nuclear reactor, with output ranging up to 300 megawatts. As a comparison, Canada’s largest nuclear power plant, Ontario’s Bruce Power plant, produces 6,400 megawatts of energy at its peak. SMRs can be manufactured off-site and shipped to the reactor site fully constructed.

There are a variety of different types of SMRs under development. The main differentiator is the type of fuel or coolant they use. The Canadian Nuclear Laboratories’ recent Request for Expressions of Interest drew submissions from across the globe for a variety of proposed technologies, including:

  • Pressurized Water-cooled Reactors
  • High-temperature Gas-cooled Reactors
  • Sodium-cooled Fast Reactors
  • Gas-cooled Fast Reactors
  • Molten Salt Reactors
  • Fusion Reactors

One example of SMR technology is Terrestrial Energy’s Integral Molten Salt Reactor (IMSR). The company expects its first IMSR power plants to be operational at some point in the 2020s and capable of providing 190 MW of power and 400 MW of heat that is virtually free of carbon emissions. Terrestrial Energy’s reactor has successfully completed the first phase of the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission’s pre-licensing vendor design review, marking the first time an advanced reactor has achieved this milestone.

“Small modular reactors have great potential as an emerging technology that could supply low-carbon energy for a range of users, including remote communities, mining operations and the oil and gas industry.”

Jim Carr, Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources

Canada is not alone in its belief that SMRs could be a key strategy in efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The United States, Russia, France, and China are also very interested in the technology.

What are the benefits of SMRs over traditional nuclear reactors?

Many of the advantages that SMRs could offer over large-scale nuclear reactors are related to the fact that they can be purchased and constructed in a modular fashion. This reduces up-front capital costs, makes for simpler plants, and can reduce labour requirements. It also makes it easier and more affordable to scale up a site with additional modules over time as energy demand increases.

The fact that SMRs have a smaller energy output also makes them a more suitable solution for locations with lower power requirements. This could be particularly promising for northern and remote communities and large mines where SMRs could replace dirty and expensive diesel generators.

SMR developers also suggest that the technology is safer than its larger counterparts, as the modular units house less radioactive material in their core, meaning less energy is potentially released in the event of an accident. SMRs can also be installed beneath the ground, making them less vulnerable to hazards such as extreme weather or sabotage.

Another advantage of SMRs is the fact that their capability extends beyond energy production. SMRs could also be used in applications for district heating, co-generation, energy storage, desalination, and hydrogen production.

Adoption of SMR technology could create an exciting next chapter for nuclear energy in Canada and across the globe. Even at moderate deployment levels, research suggests that the economic impact could be significant. One 2010 U.S. study estimated that a prototypical 100 MW SMR costing $500 million to manufacture and install would create nearly 7,000 jobs, including high-paying factory, construction, and operating jobs.

If you are job seeker interested in opportunities within the nuclear sector, review our current power and nuclear opportunities. If you are currently looking for technical talent with specific nuclear experience, connect with one of our experienced recruiting experts.

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Are Engineering Jobs in Demand?

If you’re interested in an engineering career, you may be wondering if engineering jobs are in demand. You’ll be happy to hear the answer is yes. People who choose to pursue careers in engineering can look forward to good job prospects.

Some types of engineering jobs offer more opportunities in the current climate, so you may want to consider an in-demand specialization. In certain specializations, there will be more job openings than job seekers in the coming years. Here are some of the most in-demand engineering jobs in Canada.

Aerospace Engineer

Aerospace engineers design aircraft and spacecraft. They may even design systems for national defense or missiles. Once they’ve designed these products, they’re involved with the manufacturing and testing process. They ensure their products are safe and will work as expected.

The outlook for aerospace engineers is very good. Canadian Business ranked this job as number 14 on its list of the top jobs in Canada. Five-year wage growth for aerospace engineers is 38.85 percent and five-year employee growth is 9.1 percent, according to Canadian Business. By 2022, there’s projected to be more than one job opening for every job seeker, so there will be plenty of opportunity.

To pursue this path, you can study either aeronautical or astronautical engineering.

Petroleum & Chemical Process Engineer

Petroleum and chemical process engineers are also in high demand. Petroleum engineers are responsible for overseeing drilling operations and studying new drilling sites. Chemical engineers create the processes companies use to turn raw oil and gas into sellable products.

The outlook for these types of engineers is also very good. Five-year wage growth is 14.39 percent in this sector. By 2022, there’s projected to be a lot of demand for these engineers.

Electronics Engineer

Electronic equipment is a major part of modern life, and as an electronics engineer, you’ll be in charge of designing and developing it. Telecommunications equipment is designed by electronics engineers, as is data communications equipment, like computers and tablets. Electronics engineers could even be involved with exciting projects like communications and navigation systems for national defense.

Electronics engineering has seen five-year wage growth of 7.61 percent, with five-year employee growth of -0.6 percent. Demand for these engineers is projected to be high in the future. Aspiring electronics engineers can study electrical engineering, electronics engineering, or a related engineering discipline to get started.

Industrial Engineer

Modern manufacturing demands efficiency, and industrial engineers make that happen. They’re in charge of designing factory layouts for peak efficiency. By conducting studies, they determine the best ways for factories to use equipment, employees, and procedures. Industrial engineers could determine the most efficient ways to move products around a factory or to pay factory workers. This is a great job for people who like discovering the fastest, most efficient ways to perform tasks.

Five-year wage growth for industrial engineers is at 1.74 percent. However, five-year employee growth has been high at 16.7 percent. This hiring spree is projected to continue, and demand should be high in the coming years. Studying industrial engineering, manufacturing engineering, or a related specialization is the way to get started in this career.

Engineering is a solid career choice, no matter which specialization you choose to pursue. By choosing one of these in-demand engineering jobs, you can set yourself up for a successful career in the future. To find your dream engineering job, keep an eye on engineering job opportunities.

The Most In-Demand Engineering Jobs in Canada

If you’re an engineer, your career prospects are probably pretty enviable. Many industries already need your knowledge, and salaries start relatively high. However, demand for your skills is only set to increase in the next few years as older professionals age out of their positions. Overall, the future looks rosy for you and your peers.

Still, some jobs are more desirable than others. In-demand positions will offer you the ability to distinguish yourself faster and move up the ranks at a younger age. This will allow you greater freedom and control over your career choices. The right decision could put you on the fast track to success. 

But how can you determine which careers will offer the best long-term potential, and how will these jobs balance this promise with your immediate needs? These are both valuable questions, and this article will help you answer them. We’ll look at a few of the most auspicious engineering jobs in Canada and how they’ll change across industries within the next few years. There’s no better time than the present to start planning your future, and this list will help you do just that.

Software Engineers

You can expect a prosperous career if you have a background in software engineering. Demand for this position has grown at lightspeedsince 2006, and it shows no sign of slowing down. It currently ranks seventh on Canadian Business’s list of Canada’s best jobs, and while increasing salaries have led to a proportionate rise in job competition, graduates are still highly valued in today’s job market.

Software engineers can take on a wide range of roles, depending on the organization that employs them. These professionals usually create and design specifications for software, but they may also be involved in testing products, investigating their efficiency, and training new users on how to use them.

Petroleum Engineers

Considering the recent slump in oil prices, this engineering specialty may seem odd as an in-demand discipline. However, Canada’s petroleum industry is set to rebound in 2017, with job growth surging to 300 percent by 2018 before slowing slightly to 200 percent by 2024. Regardless, prospects don’t look as grim as they once did for these engineering jobs in Canada.

Demand isn’t the only selling point for petroleum engineers. Median salaries hover just below $105,000 per year, so these professionals can expect to live large. Petroleum engineers can also seek work with a wide variety of employers, from government or research organizations to oil extractors and more.

Aerospace Engineers

The aerospace industry seems to have contracted since 2009, as companies have shed 21 percent of their workers. However, this field can still guarantee plenty of engineering jobs in Canada over the next few years. Rapid retirement rates and projected growth mean that about 1,400 jobs per year could be available through 2024.

Engineers who specialize in aerospace generally require more education in order to compete. Still, these professionals can hold one of many roles. Salaries have also grown steadily, and while the current median sits below the six-digit mark, there may be an increase over time.

Electronics Engineers

You’ve already heard about software, and now it’s time to learn about hardware. Compared to other performers on this list, electronics engineering growth seems slightly slow. Demand has only increased by about 4.4 percent in five years, and significant growth isn’t expected until 2022 at least. But electronics engineering still places 24th on the Canadian Business list of the top 100 jobs, and median salaries have generally increased by about 16 percent since 2009.

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What Can an Engineering Staffing Agency Really Do for Me?

The hiring process is an opportunity for the best hiring managers to shine at what they do best. Whether you need a short-term employee to finish off an important project or want to enlist a permanent, full-time engineer, you’ll still face plenty of obstacles before you find the perfect fit for your organization. It’s difficult enough to find the right technical workers, but hiring them before other companies scoop them up can seem impossible. 

If you’re in need of a staffing boost, you should consult an engineering recruitment agency. These firms have connections and industry knowledge that help them interact with the best talent in your industry. As a result, they can be invaluable resources during your recruitment process. 

Still, many hiring managers refuse to work with these companies out of principle. They believe they should be able to recruit new professionals on their own. Unfortunately, this misguided conviction usually results in longer hiring processes and more expenditure. Read on to find out how an engineering staffing agency can help you avoid these pitfalls.

It Helps You Find More Versatile Engineers

Versatility is valuable in today’s engineering industry. A technical worker with a limited skillset can be a liability in a project-based environment. You need a professional with a breadth of knowledge who can adapt to new challenges with ease. Unfortunately, finding these candidates on your own isn’t an easy feat. 

The task gets easier when you work with an engineering staffing agency. These firms often have connections with professionals who have performed contract work with a variety of firms. As a result, they possess the broad knowledge you need to complete a variety of tasks. You can either hire these workers on full-time, or simply sign them to short-term contracts.

It Helps You Prioritize the Right Traits

Hiring managers may know the qualifications a certain role requires, but what about the temperament? For example, engineers can’t afford to be uncommunicative or withdrawn if they work with a team of other technical workers. You need to gauge whether a candidate will fit well within their required role, and that’s not something you can glean from a resume and a few interviews.

Engineering staffing agencies help hire hundreds of technical workers every year. Their professionals know how to read candidates’ characteristics, and they can predict whether they have the necessary soft skills for a role. This can help you find employees who are natural fits with your organization.

It Connects You with Top Talent

Sometimes, hiring managers miss opportunities to set themselves up for success. They want to find the best candidates for a given position, but then they only use job postings and advertisements to publicize their vacancy. Unfortunately, the best engineers are usually gainfully employed, so they don’t actively scour these resources.

You need to find a way to reach these passive candidates if you want your hiring efforts to succeed. An engineering staffing agency can help you. These firms network extensively with technical workers in a range of industries. As a result, they’re usually connected with some of the brightest talent in your field. The right recruiter can put you in touch with these professionals, which will help you hire more prestigious personnel.

It Speeds up Your Hiring Process

A slow hiring process benefits no one: delays create excessive expenditures for hiring managers, and they frustrate potential candidates. Engineering staffing agencies understand this problem. They work hard to help their clients minimize hiring time. As a result, engineering companies can save a substantial amount of money if they work with a recruiter.

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What You Need to Know about Current Engineering Demographics

If you’re responsible for hiring engineers, you need to keep up with demographics in the industry. When you’re aware of the demographics, you can recruit the engineers you need more easily. Here’s what you need to know about some of the current engineering demographics in Canada.

Engineers Are Retiring en Masse

As you may have heard, Canada’s population is greying. There are now more seniors than children in the country, and that’s a problem for hiring managers in many sectors. As the population gets older, the average age of people in the engineering field increases. As time goes on, more and more engineers will retire. You’ll need to scramble to replace your highly talented engineers as they retire.

In Canada, engineers are typically between 30 and 55 years old, though this varies based on the field and the province. Civil engineers, for example, have a higher average age in Canada. In British Columbia, these engineers are an average of 50 years old, while in Manitoba, they’re an average of 48 years old. In Ontario, civil engineers are a comparatively youthful 42 years old.

Engineering managers are essential for your operations, but they have a high average age, too. In Ontario, engineering managers are an average of 49 years old, while they’re 48 years old in British Columbia. The youngest engineering managers are found in Newfoundland and Labrador, but they’re still 45 years old. The average age of engineering managers is expected to increase in all provinces over the next ten years. By 2025, they’ll be an average of 49 to 50 years old, depending on the province.

Demand for Engineers Will Outstrip Supply

Many engineers will be retiring in the coming years, but there aren’t enough younger engineers to replace them. In the next decade, Canada will be short 100,000 engineers. Canadian universities are trying to keep up. In 2015, there were 81,287 engineering students enrolled in undergraduate programs. That’s an increase of 32 percent from 2010.

Still, there won’t be enough engineers to go around. Companies will need to work even harder to recruit top engineers. To attract top talent, you may need to promise higher salaries or more diversified benefits. Or, you may need to offer a culture of career advancement to entice new engineers to choose your company over your competitors.

Some Skills Will Be Hard to Find

By the time the members of your engineering team retire, they’ll have accumulated many skills. These skills were learned through years of on-the-job experience. When these professionals retire, you may have trouble finding engineers with those same skillsets. While young engineers are qualified to start work after receiving their university degrees, it’s impossible for them to have all the experience retirees have. Of course, they’ll gain the experience and skills over the course of their careers, but that doesn’t help hiring managers now.

To find the specialized skills you need, you may have to widen your search for engineering candidates. This could include turning to candidates from other provinces or even other countries. If you’re used to recruiting locally, having to widen your search can be a big change. The methods you currently use to find engineers, like asking for referrals or going to local networking events, may not work as well.

To gain access to a wider network of candidates, consider turning to an engineering recruiting agency. Recruiters work tirelessly to find talented engineers, and they can find professionals you can’t. For example, they could have a network of engineers from across Canada, while you’re more limited to your local area. With this larger network, it’s easier for recruiters to locate engineers with hard-to-find skills.

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Overwhelmed by Recruiting Engineers? Follow These 5 Tips

Do you wish you had a guide to hiring engineers? In this competitive market, recruiting engineers can be challenging. The best engineers are fielding offers from multiple companies, and companies need to compete to hire top talent.

How can you attract talented engineers to your team while taking the stress out of the recruitment process? Here are five tips for recruiting engineers.

1. Encourage Employee Referrals

If you don’t already have one, start an employee referral program. Your current employees probably know other people in the engineering field. They can refer talented candidates to your company. Employee referrals give you access to better candidates. This is because your employees are familiar with the company and know what types of people would succeed on the team.

To encourage your employees to refer candidates, offer incentives. Incentives don’t have to be financial, though they can be. Publicly recognizing employee referrals or offering positive feedback can also motivate employees to make good referrals.

2. Advertise Your Company Culture

Engineers are in high demand in the labour market, so they can afford to be picky. They consider factors other than salary and benefits, like company culture. Company culture refers to the environment in the workplace, which includes the company’s values and practices.

To attract engineers to your company, advertise its culture. When you write job postings, include a few specific points about the culture you’ve created in your workplace. Your current employees can also help. Employees will tell people they know about the culture, and their comments may attract candidates who find the culture appealing.

3. Write Clear Job Postings

To attract top talent, companies need to write clear job postings. If your job postings don’t clearly communicate what the job is and what the expectations are, you’ll have trouble attracting good candidates. Poor candidates may misunderstand the posting and send an application. Good candidates may not want to waste time applying for a job they may not be interested in.

Postings should list all the essential functions the engineer will need to perform. Clearly list skills candidates should have, and specify whether each skill is mandatory or just preferred. Give details about the company culture. Don’t forget to mention whether the job is part time or full time, and whether or not the position is permanent.

4. Have a Long-Term Recruiting Strategy

Do you only think about hiring when you have an immediate need for new engineers? This approach can make it harder to find the top talent you need. Your hiring timelines won’t always match up with the timelines of top candidates. In engineering fields, candidates may want to finish up their current projects before they move to a new job. They can’t always give two weeks’ notice and move on, like candidates in other fields can.

Instead, try to play the long game. If you’re always on the hunt for new talent, you can build a network of candidates you’d like to hire. Those people may not be immediately available, but if you stay in contact, they may be available when you have a hiring need.

5. Work with a Recruiter

Recruiting engineers can be challenging, and you might decide you don’t have time to do it yourself. Or, you might just not want to deal with the hassle of recruitment. In these situations, consider partnering with a recruiter to get the engineering staff you need. Using a recruiter can save you both time and stress.

Recruiters who specialize in engineering fields can make hiring easy. They network constantly to find good engineers, so you don’t have to. They also maintain databases of engineering workers, so they can quickly find talented people to join your team.

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The Complete Guide to Staffing in the Engineering Industry

Hiring engineers is notoriously difficult. You need to find professionals with the right qualifications and skills for your projects. If you choose someone whose skills are too niche or underdeveloped, you’ll need to spend much more money to train or replace them. That’s why it’s so important for you to hire well. 

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The Top Engineering Jobs in Canada

Engineers are the belles of the ball right now. The profession is about to undergo a wave of demand for new employees as older workers retire and leave the industry. This is leaving behind a wealth of engineering job opportunities for new job seekers. Those who have experience and a clear sense of direction can use this trend to jumpstart their careers.

That doesn’t mean there won’t be obstacles, though. Some engineers are still unable to find work, while others find it difficult to pass the tough hiring criteria that it takes to find gainful employment. The horizon may look bright for engineers, but that might not offer hope for those who are still in the dark.

Fortunately, there’s still some proactive things you can do if you’re looking or about to look for work. Companies still have high demand for some engineering disciplines, and these fields offer a host of other benefits that should make them attractive to any qualified professional. If any of these top engineering jobs suit your fancy, you may want to consider adapting your career path to pursue them.

Electrical Engineer

Specializing in electrical engineering can really give your career a boost. Workers in this field design and maintain a range of solutions that harness the power of electricity. Whether they build electronic components, create control systems, or find new ways to generate and transmit power, these professionals usually benefit from exciting and fruitful career paths.

You’ll need to build up a strong resume if you want to land one of these top engineering jobs. While these jobs only call for a bachelor’s degree in engineering, many firms look for workers that hold a master’s degree. A lot of the work is doneindependently on computers, but there is also some teamwork involved as well, so you need to be able to work in both environments.

Manufacturing Engineer

Engineers are frequently involved in the design stage of a product’s development, but those who specialize in manufacturing go a step further. They create tools and processes that actually enhance product development. Whether they’re tasked with reducing costs or designing goods that cut down on production time, these professionals take an active role in crafting everyday products.

Workers in this field are similar to industrial engineers, and they can find jobs in a variety of industries. On average, they earn about $83,000 per year, though professionals who work in more lucrative industries such as aerospace or transportation may take home more.

Software Engineer

Software is as much a part of the modern world as roads, cars, and buildings. Yet it’s easy to think of these tools as nebulous aspects of life. But behind every program there’s a dedicated team of engineers working to improve, update, and maintain services. It’s easily one of the most relevant engineering disciplines, and software specialists are in high demand all over the world.

Professionals in this field can expect to earn salaries in the low six figures, and the industry will continue to grow through 2024. Candidates will need at least a bachelor’s degree to find work. If you can work well with others, solve problems efficiently, and analyze data, you may be well suited to a career in this profession.

Petroleum Engineer

Despite a recent downturn, the oil industry is slowly bouncing back. Companies will need to hire a glut of new engineers to replace those who left in the initial slump. Those who are suited to the position should consider it as a viable career path.

Chemical, petroleum, and mining engineers can expect to earn about $84,000 from working in the oil industry. If you fulfill these criteria, you could be on your way to landing one of the top engineering jobs in Canada.

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5 Things I Wish I Knew about Engineering Recruitment Agencies

Hiring engineers is a lot like a boxing match—in both cases, your time is limited, you’re under a lot of pressure to come out on top, and if you’re not careful, you may end up getting knocked out. It’s easy to see why anyone would need a guide to navigate these circumstances.

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How to Take the Stress out of Recruiting Engineers

Behind every great engineer is a talented hiring manager. These recruitment experts understand what their companies need and find the professionals who can deliver. Both the company and the individual flourish as a result.

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5 Careers in Engineering That Might Be Right for You

Many see careers in engineering as a surefire way to lead a comfortable, prosperous life. These workers benefit from great starting pay and high wages throughout their professional lives. Job security isn’t always guaranteed in some industries, but engineers’ skills always seem to be in demand. Maybe that’s why the United States produced over 237,000 engineers in 2014 alone.

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4 Things You Likely Don’t Know about Engineering Recruitment Agencies

Finding the right engineer is no walk in the park. You need to locate candidates that match your needs. Often, these professionals must possess very specific technical abilities, which leaves you with very little room for compromise. You might be able to find a skilled worker from a related field, but it’s unlikely that the worker will be able to offer the level of quality you require.

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How to Fill Electrical Engineering Jobs

Electrical engineers are a hot commodity. There’s no shortage of work for these professionals, since many different industries require staff who can understand and design power transmission equipment.

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Hiring Engineers Shouldn’t Be as Difficult as Engineering

When people want to say that a task shouldn’t be as difficult as it is, they often exclaim, “it’s not rocket science!” Perhaps it would be more fitting if they said, “it’s not engineering.” This profession requires employees to attain distinctive skills and a complex working knowledge so they can develop new products for a variety of applications and industries. As a result, it can be difficult to find engineers who are qualified to fill these roles.

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5 Interesting Careers in Engineering

The world we know wouldn’t exist if not for engineers. These technical professionals design the technologies that we use every day. From the roadways that guide people to work to the tools they use when they get there and the programs they use in their leisure time, almost every modern innovation is the result of an engineer’s work.

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3 Things You Didn’t Know about Engineering Recruitment Agencies

A prolonged hiring process doesn’t benefit anyone. Candidates have to walk on eggshells waiting for your call, and many will take other jobs if they don’t hear from you quickly. Your company will also lose money and may even suffer from reduced productivity until you’re fully staffed again, which can put substantial pressure on hiring managers. This is why many turn to recruitment agencies to speed up the process.

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4 Tips for Hiring Electrical Engineering Staff

Hiring is difficult at the best of times, but companies that need electrical engineering staff face even greater obstacles than standard firms do. Electrical engineers are in high demand, so the best candidates have the luxury of choice when they apply for positions. If you’re not proactive with your hiring policies, you may hire someone whose skillset and attitude don’t align with your agency. This can delay your projects and lead to high replacement costs. You need to know how to find the right people and convince them to work with you.

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What Can I Gain from Partnering with Engineering Recruiters?

Vision can only take you so far. The saying goes that the best laid plans of mice and men can often go awry, and that’s especially true when you find the wrong people to carry out those plans. It only takes one wrong move to ruin everything. Your team can have the knowledge and enthusiasm to excel at a project, but if it isn’t staffed properly, it will turn in work late and over budget.

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5 Things an Engineering Recruitment Company Will Do (That You Won’t)

Partnering with an engineering recruitment company means getting a knowledgeable and experienced team to help you with things you might not necessarily be able to do on your own. Engineering recruitment companies make it their job to take on tasks that you often don’t have the time or resources for. Here are five things an engineering recruitment company will do that you won’t:

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How Engineering Recruiters Can Streamline Your Hiring Process

The hiring process can be incredibly stressful and time consuming. From beginning to end, it requires a lot of energy and work to find the right people and to make sure that they’re able to transition into their new positions. When you partner with engineering recruiters, you’re putting yourself in the hands of highly experienced people who can help you streamline the whole process.

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Looking to Hire Engineers? Here’s What You Need to Know

Engineers are always in steady demand, and engineering programs remain some of the most popular university programs in Canada. Every year, new engineers with tremendous skill sets enter the job market looking for employment, alongside other engineers looking for a change of place or position. When you’re looking to hire engineers, there are certain things you should know to ensure you get the best candidates possible.

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Engineering Job Opportunities in Canada to Watch in 2017

Engineering is widely considered one of the best fields of study you can enter—there is a continual demand for skilled engineers, and the job opportunities are vast and varied. However, each different engineering field has its own unique challenges and demands. Here are the engineering job opportunities you should be watching out for in the coming year.

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4 Hiring Tips from an Engineering Recruiter

Recruitment can be tough in any industry, but when you’re looking to hire an engineer, the competition can be incredibly fierce. Since engineers are in such high demand right now, it’s more important than ever to stay on top of your recruiting game and pay attention to tips and tricks directly from the experts.

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3 Engineering Trends to Watch for in 2017

Engineering trends are constantly changing to meet the fluctuating needs of the global market, and of the consumers and governments that rely on their innovations and expertise. The upcoming year promises new challenges that will need to be met by the field of engineering.

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Can an Engineering Recruitment Company Really Help Me?

No matter what type of engineer you need, hiring can leave you feeling stressed out and overwhelmed by the task. Your new addition needs to have specific abilities to complete and succeed at all of the projects your organization undertakes. Finding these skilled workers can be a difficult task, though,especially when you have time and budget constraints. If you don’t hire properly, you may get saddled with a subpar worker who can’t pull his or her weight. So how do you avoid the pitfalls of the hiring process without having to spend time and resources you don’t have?

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Why Partner with an Engineering Recruitment Company?

Hiring the right engineers is crucial to your short- and long-term success. All members of your team need to work at their highest capacities, especially when you’re up against tight deadlines and restrictive budgets. Yet finding top talent is often harder than you might expect. Engineers are in high demand, and other firms may scoop up the most promising candidates before you get the chance. Is there any way to hire efficiently in this environment?

Fortunately, there is. The right engineering recruitment company can take the stress out of your hiring process. These companies offer a range of services that can help you find your company’s next great technical professional. Whether you need a temporary solution or a long-term fix, a qualified recruiter will give your staffing search the boost it needs.

Still unconvinced? This article will list just a few of the benefits an engineering recruitment company can offer you. Read on to find out everything you need to know about these dynamic firms.

They Understand Your Industry

Nobody understands your company like you do. You know your organization’s unique strengths and constraints, which gives you insight into the personnel you need. How can another company match this expertise?

The staff at engineering recruitment firms may not know everything about your company, but they do understand your industry. These professionals work with clients in many different fields, so they need to keep up to date on industry trends and adapt to suit different interests. If they don’t already know how your organization fits within your industry, they’ll learn quickly so they can find engineers who are suited to your needs.

They Hire Faster

Time is money during your hiring period. Companies often need to pay to source candidates and access recruitment resources. Vacant positions can also cause operational inefficiencies that compromise output and reduce profits. You can’t hire slowly if you want to staunch these financial losses.

Thankfully, time isn’t an issue when you work with an engineering recruitment company. One of the advantages of working with recruiters is that you’ll be able to draw candidates from pre-established networks, which cuts down on sourcing and vetting time. As a result, you can interview these professionals quickly and hire them before your expenses get out of hand.

They Can Help You Reach Passive Candidates

Passive candidates are like unicorns to hiring managers. These professionals represent the top talent in an industry, but they usually don’t search actively for new employment. They’re rare and yet highly sought after, so you need some way to distinguish yourself from your competitors.

Engineering recruiters make this task a breeze. They go to great lengths to find passive candidates and network with them, which helps them build connections that many firms can’t achieve on their own. If your interests align with passive candidates, a recruiter can connect you and facilitate a hire. You’ll gain an unbeatable employee who never would’ve considered your position otherwise, and you’ll have a recruiter to thank for this success.

They Cost Less

It’s hard to hire effectively from within the confines of a tight budget. Attracting the right employee means offering competitive salaries and benefits, all of which can cut through a bottom line like a knife through butter. Spend too much and you’ll incur the wrath of your bosses. Spend too little and you’ll alienate applicants. What do you do?

In this case, the simple answer is to engage a recruitment agency. These firms don’t just find better candidates—they also minimize unnecessary hiring expenses and work within established budgets. You can be cost conscious and still find a great engineer if you work with the right recruiting firm.

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4 Trends to Watch in the Engineering Industry

Engineers are the backbone of progress. They develop the products, machinery, and electronics that we use every single day, making the engineering industry a crucial part of our society. This makes it particularly important for engineers to stay up-to-date on what’s hot and what’s not, as the engineering industry has experienced unprecedented growth in recent years.

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