British Columbian business leaders are increasingly concerned about the growing competition for and shortage of talent. This is compounded by vocational and technical skills gaps, constant workplace innovations, and technological changes that require the upskilling and reskilling of labour. Combined, these trends are affecting many businesses and the overall economy. They will remain a risk to the success of organizations large and small over the rest of the decade and into the 2030s.
Late last year, the Business Council of British Columbia (BCBC) convened a Talent Task Force (TTF) – a cross-section of senior representatives of member organizations – to inform the development of a set of public policy recommendations and ideas for collaborative action among business, the post-secondary education sector, the provincial government, and others which can be undertaken to address the human capital issues facing B.C. After several meetings and virtual discussions, the Task Force unanimously supports the ideas and proposals advanced in this paper.
These recommendations encompass policy measures and collaborative actions aimed at improving the talent situation in the province. Most can be implemented or advanced, at least in part, by governments. Others require action by different parties. A brief review of B.C.'s broader labour market context precedes the recommendations.
The following chart identifies the various factors the Talent Task Force considered that impact labour balance in the marketplace and also helped inform the report's recommendations.