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Industrial Sectors – Still a Good Career?

Is employment in heavy industrial fields a good choice?  People employed in Alberta, Saskatchewan, BC and Newfoundland may be asking this with the mining industry downturn and the concerns over the low price of oil. The truth is – yes! Work in industrial sectors is a great choice!  Even with these short and medium term downturns some industrial sectors will remain stable and even thrive. Three great examples of strong industries are marine ship building, forestry and manufacturing.

Ship Building Boom:

In a recent news article, the ramping up of federally funded ship building contracts on top of an already strong private marine maintenance and ship building sector means a huge increase in employment at already busy shipyards in Victoria, Halifax and Vancouver. Irving Shipyards and Seaspan are starting to hire people who might traditionally have been drawn to the Oil and Gas sector in positions such as Welding, Ironwork and Pipefitting.

The project managers, safety officers and engineers from oil and gas have not seen any layoffs but as hiring slows or if sustained low prices of oil result in layoffs, the Marine ship building and boat maintenance yards will be waiting for their applications.

Forestry Sector Gaining Strength:

Forestry is also thriving with employment growth and home building in the US driving up the price of lumber.  Lower costs of Canadian inputs due to a lower dollar and reduced fuel costs for those transporting logs translates to an increase in business for the lumber and forestry sectors in Canada.

Manufacturing Capitalizing on Cost Savings:

Manufacturing companies are also benefiting from a lower Canadian dollar which reduces the cost of labour and energy inputs. Manufacturing can leverage lower fuel costs and resulting transportation costs to offer lower prices and choose the fastest delivery methods, beating out competition from outside of North America.

Even with the storm clouds in a few industrial sectors, there are great opportunities for Industrial Management and Tradespeople in Canada.

  • Kael Campbell, President, Red Seal Recruiting Solutions Ltd.