Canadian youth value job stability, survey suggests


With companies across the country and around the world still laying off workers each month, job stability is top of mind for working Canadians. A recent survey of Canadian college and university students shows job stability is among the top priorities for young workers as well.

More than half of young people surveyed said they would like to stay with one employer for the duration of their career, and the Government of Canada ranked first on the list of Canada’s Top Campus Employers, chosen by more than 16,000 students across the country earlier this year.

Provincial and municipal governments, as well as Health Canada, also came in the Top 10 of the rankings, which are part of a larger report conducted annually by Brainstorm Consulting and DECODE, called From Learning to Work.

Eric Meerkamper, a partner at DECODE, said due to a number of factors, including parents who are very involved in their children’s lives and the skyrocketing cost of post-secondary education resulting in student debt, young workers are forced to be smarter about their careers today than in the past.

“Young people are interested in job security. They realise, ‘I need that stability in my career because I want an interesting job, but I also want an interesting life.’”

Meerkamper said the employers which will be most successful in hiring, and more importantly, retaining, the youngest generation of workers (as the workforce shrinks due to the upcoming Baby Boomer retirement) will be those who can engage young workers by communicating their most attractive assets, such as training opportunities and work-life balance, while still being realistic about the true nature of the organization.

The rankings also show that young workers want to have a positive impact on the world: non-profits such as The Hospital for Sick Children, the Canadian Cancer Society and the David Suzuki Foundation also made it in the Top 10. “They want to do well in their careers and financially, and they also want to ‘do good’ and have a positive impact,” Meerkamper said.

The survey results also feature six sub-groups that list the top 25 employers as rated by students in liberal arts, engineering, information technology, natural sciences, undergraduate business, and MBA programs.

Other highlights from the press release:

  • Google, Apple, and Microsoft were the only for-profit organizations to make the top 10 this year
  • 71% of students surveyed said they believe their employer will be loyal to them if they work hard
  • 62% indicate that the current economy makes them “worried about” their job prospects
  • three quarters (76%) believe that employers will see them as “good candidates for employment”
  • the major accounting firms – Ernst & Young, Deloitte, KPMG, and PricewaterhouseCoopers – perform very well among undergraduate business students by landing in the top 10
  • Research In Motion (the makers of the BlackBerry) ranked in the top 10 as selected by students in 4 different majors: undergraduate business, engineering, graduate business (MBA), and information technology

What do you think about the rankings?

About the author

Cassandra Jowett is TalentEgg's Content Manager. She joined the team as a student intern in the summer of 2008, and since then her heart has never really left the Egg Carton. Cassandra is a recent graduate of the Ryerson University School of Journalism, where she earned a Bachelor of Journalism with a focus in writing and editing for newspapers. She has also written and edited for The Globe and Mail, The National Post, t.o.night newspaper and other publications.