Report Shows that 40 Percent of Canada's Workforce at Risk for Job Displacement

By: Daniel Steingold | June 15, 2016

A new report from the Brookfield Institute for Innovation & Entrepreneurship at Toronto’s Ryerson University found that over 40 percent of Canada’s workforce is at risk of job displacement over the coming two decades.

The cause of the job displacement? Automation. The report warned that automation is now shifting into “cognitive, non-routine tasks and occupations, such as driving and conducting job interviews.”

The top five occupations at risk of widespread job displacement are being a retail salesperson, administrative assistant, food counter attendant, cashier, and transport truck driver.

The institute estimated there to be a 70 percent likelihood that positions in risk of automation will no longer be performed in 10 to 20 years, with those in the jobs most at-risk also experiencing lesser wages and fewer opportunities for job replacement.

Jobs that require higher skill levels are thought to be less likely to be replaced by automation. The report gauged that these higher paying jobs have less than a 30 percent chance of being replaced.

The five foremost positions in terms of being the least likely to be automated are retail and wholesale trade managers, registered nurses, kindergarten and elementary school teachers, early childhood educators and assistants, and secondary school teachers.

Low-risk occupations are expected to rise by 712,000 in rank by 2024, while high-risk occupations will add only 396,000 positions.

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