Class of 2012 faces frozen hiring, study shows

Tue Dec 13, 2011 9:20am EST
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TORONTO (Reuters) - Students graduating from Canadian colleges and universities next year will face the same stagnant job market that has confronted 2011 graduates, a study released on Tuesday said.

The annual report of the Canadian Association of Career Educators and Employers (CACEE) also found that while many industries have halted employment growth or are cutting jobs, others complain they can't find the people they need. Specifically, the mining and telecommunications industries say there is a shortage of graduates that have the required skills.

Making finding a job more difficult, however, campus recruiting will be reduced for the third straight year, the study said.

"Campus recruiting is a barometer for the rest of the economy," said CACEE Executive Director Paul Smith. "A flat labor market for grads is evidence that the economy is still sluggish in a number of sectors, but growth in starting salaries shows that the employers who are hiring are competing for the best and brightest."

Starting salaries will climb by 10 percent over 2011, the study said.

The survey of 324 employers across Canada showed that graduates with solid verbal communications and analytical skills, plus a solid work ethic, were the most sought after - not just ones who offered specialized skills.

(Reporting By Claire Sibonney; Editing by Peter Galloway)