Losing GM Stings, But We Will Recover!

There’s no question that Oshawa has taken its share of knocks over the years, and the GM announcement is undoubtedly a blow that will affect a lot of people.

My family worked at General Motors for generations, so I have seen first-hand the effects of the gradual decline and witnessed the effects within the Durham Region (and our family). This latest closure, while no surprise to many, still stings given the rich and proud history.

Many of the GM employees have been there for years or decades and it’s very hard and very distressing to suddenly find yourself out of work, and through no fault of your own.  And the timing of it, just before Christmas, is especially hard to bear.

My thoughts are with the workers at GM and the parts suppliers such as Martin Rea and Woodbridge Foam to name a couple who will be affected

However, it is my firm belief that we WILL pull together as a community.  From an economic perspective, the region has never been more diverse and stronger.

Following the news of the closure Oshawa MPP Jennifer French tweeted that “GM didn’t build #Oshawa. Oshawa built GM”.  She is NOT wrong.

And Durham Recruiting is here to tell you that automotive is not the only game in town.

Here is an excerpt from Invest Durham Economic Development Strategy and Action Plan, 2017:

Ontario’s Growth Plan for the Greater Golden Horseshoe sets a target of 430,000 jobs, and projects that 1.2 million people will call Durham Region home by 2041. Our Region is well on the way to achieving these targets. In 2017, we are already home to 95 foreign owned businesses, 125,621 full-time, 55,862 part-time and 12,147 seasonal employees and an incredibly well-connected and diverse business community comprised of 12,220 enterprises in total.

Oshawa’s Low Unemployment Rate

Unemployment in Oshawa has been declining rapidly over the last number of years. In fact, according to Statistics Canada earlier this year, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in the Oshawa census metropolitan area – which also includes Whitby and Clarington – was 4.5%, the lowest in the province.

Durham Region is Growing by Leaps and Bounds

Durham Region is rapidly developing, growing by leaps and bounds.  The Region is focusing on investment in a number of sectors including agri-business, health sciences, innovative technology, manufacturing, tourism, and EN3 (energy environment and engineering.

EN3 is thriving in Durham Region.  Durham Region produces roughly 30 percent of Ontario’s electricity and is described as an “energy cluster”.  Of the 22 CANDU reactors in all of Canada, 12 of them are in Durham region.  The provincial Ontario Climate Change Action Plan spurs ongoing development and innovation in this dynamic area. The Darlington refurb is expected to add 7000 well paying jobs alone over the next 7 years!

Construction is booming.  Dan Waechter, Construction Manager for the Regional Municipality of Durham, says that “Our construction projection is about 20 percent larger than last year” and adds that it’s growing.  There are also literally thousands of private contractors in Durham Region providing services in building, excavation, concrete work, paving, plumbing, roofing, and many other companies who provide ancillary services.  Construction in Durham Region is definitely NOT closed for the winter.

The Clarington 2017 Growth Trends Review report  predicts a strong demand for construction of additional housing arising from “infrastructure projects such as the Highway 407 and 418, the refurbishment of the Darlington Nuclear Generation Station reactors, the GO Transit Lakeshore East line expansion from Oshawa to Bowmanville, plus the new Toyota parts plant.”

Skilled trades is an area of high demand.  Carpenters, electricians, CNC operators, machinists, AZ drivers are a few of the skilled trades that there are openings for right now!

Are you a techno-whiz?  Digital technology is another strength in Durham Region, impacting the areas of health informatics, security, gaming, marketing, content management, energy management and manufacturing automation.

Finance is another growth area in the Durham Region and, in fact, a national accounting firm announced just a few days ago that they are expanding to “build upon its existing presence in Oshawa”.

Durham’s Unstoppable Growth

To encourage growth in key sectors, local, provincial and federal government agencies are actively promoting and supporting investment in Durham for new start-ups, for corporate relocation, and for expansion of existing business.

Investors are looking to Durham Region as the place to expand and grow.  Oshawa is home to one of Ontario’s Regional Investment Centres, The Spark Centre. The Spark Centre focuses on innovation in the Region and offers financial support to new and developing businesses in the area to help Durham’s economy continue to grow and thrive.

And ALL of these industries need experienced managers and skilled personnel.

Durham Recruiting is Here to Help and Here to Stay

Durham Recruiting is an established and involved member of our community.  We’re here to stay and we’re here for you!

We want to do everything we can to support our community’s members in their quest for new opportunities with the Durham Region. We understand the stress of finding a new job and will do everything we can to keep the process as light and as little stressful as possible.

We can’t promise that we will find everyone new employment placements BUT we are committed to rolling up our sleeves and working our network to support you.

As a starting point, you can register with us now. You can always reach me at info@durhamrecruiting.ca