Toronto, Ontario (March 1, 2016) – Mobilize is solving some serious labour shortage problems in service-based industries such as the tourism and hospitality sectors. The program, launched in response to changes to the Temporary Foreign Worker Program (TFWP), helps labour-strapped businesses across Canada staff up with a continuous source of young workers from other parts of the country.
The program makes it easy for an unemployed millennial from Nova Scotia to find work and build skills in British Columbia – and simple for a business to get a smart, enthusiastic person for their busy summer.
“Canadian businesses are really starting to think outside the box when it comes to addressing their labour shortages,” says Benjamin Guth, Mobilize Program Manager. “Relying on the TFWP or lobbying the federal government for special exemptions or to lessen restrictions won’t help them with their staffing issues for the fast-approaching summer season. It’s time to take a different approach.”
Attracting local talent to tourism-based businesses is tough, especially in remote locations. And using The TFW program has become next to impossible with its increased restrictions and prohibitive costs. Businesses have gotten creative with their staffing by joining Mobilize, a unique home-grown program that solves labour shortages by tapping into unemployed Canadian youth across the country.
“Not having enough labour is our single biggest challenge in the Western Canadian service industry,” said Chad Gulevich of Mount Robson Inn in Jasper and Mountaineer Lodge in Lake Louise. “The demise of the TFWP has compounded the problems of small business owners and placed great strain on the few employees we have left. Mobilize comes at the right time to help our industry connect with unemployed Canadians we would otherwise have difficulty accessing. This is a reliable solution!”
According to a recent article in the Globe & Mail, hiring millennials instead of foreign workers isn’t just about filling staffing gaps – it’s about investing in the country’s future.
“With roughly 20% of young Canadians not going to post-secondary school after graduating and another 10% dropping out before finishing,1 we desperately need more Canadian businesses to invest in our youth,” says Guth. “Young people are being overlooked for jobs due to lack of experience, but they aren’t being given the chance to get the hands-on knowledge they need.”
Canada’s youth unemployment rate is over 13% – almost twice that of the general population.2 At the same time, there are parts of the country that are struggling to find workers – especially remote areas and resort destinations. It’s time to leverage one of our country’s largest untapped labour resources – and Mobilize is helping companies across Canada do just that. During the program’s successful first year, Mobilize deployed 160+ young Canadians over three deployments to 20+ properties in Alberta and British Columbia.
“One of the reasons seasonal businesses have trouble attracting qualified staff to remote locations is the short-term nature of the work,” says Guth. “People are less likely to go to the trouble of relocating for a two to three-month job. But if they are offered several consecutive seasonal jobs in different places in a work/travel adventure program – that’s a much more attractive proposition. That’s what Mobilize does.”
So instead of turning to other countries for workers, employers can now look to other provinces, and in doing so, avoid the hassles and costs of going through the TFW program and employ smart, hard-working Canadians who want to build their careers.
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