Employment among truck drivers increased by 11.8% in the third quarter of 2022, with some 33,000 additional drivers actively employed compared to the previous quarter, the latest Trucking HR Canada (THRC) Labour Market Snapshot revealed.
At the same time, the number of unemployed drivers fell by half. The unemployment rate among drivers stands at 2.1% compared to 5.3% in the overall Canadian labour force.
This comes in the wake of the 2022 Q2 report showing the transport truck driver vacancy rate sat at 9.1% – with 28,210 vacancies across Canada.
THRC’s labor supply forecasting model projects that about 7,300 drivers will retire each year to 2023. Add to that an estimated 27,000 additional drivers will leave the profession each year for reasons other than retirement.
Canada’s truck driver labor force amounted to close to 320,000 drivers including those who are fully employed or who are actively seeking work. Some 60% of these drivers work directly in the truck transportation sector, with the remaining 40% working in industries such as construction, agriculture, mining and oil and gas extraction, manufacturing, wholesale, retail trade, and more.
Other trucking and logistics occupations have rising vacancies too. In the second quarter of 2022 THRC estimated that there were 5,200 vacant positions for shippers and receivers, up 11% over Q1. In addition, there were approximately 600 vacancies for dispatchers, up 6.1% from Q1 2022, 3,260 vacant material handler jobs (up 3.7%) and 843 vacancies for mechanics (up 14.3%).
“Our driver training and wage incentives are helping to bring new workers to the industry”, says Craig Faucette, chief programs officer, THRC. “And, with the Youth Employment Skills Strategy specifically mentioned in the Fall Economic Statement as a program that will receive more funds – we are getting ready to support more employers in addressing their ongoing labor shortages.”