Request for Proposals: How the Changing Nature of Work Will Impact the Concept of Careers and the Role and Identity of Career Developers

The pandemic, and indeed the major disruptions that came before, brought to the fore the importance of having an effective labour market entry and re-entry system. Canada lacks both a national framework for this system and the heavy lifting is often done by career and employment practitioners from myriad sub-sectors (from post-secondary to community) which lack a stable and unified identity.

CERIC is issuing this Request for Proposal (RFP) to undertake research about the changing role and identity of career developers as defined or shaped by the external forces of the changing nature of work and the evolving definition of what a career is.  The purpose is to identify factors that define and conversely limit identity making of career developers, the roles they see themselves playing through this identity and through the interplay of macro socio-economic external factors. We are interested in understanding how these factors and changes are going to drive the evolution of role and identity of the career development field as well as the skillsets and competencies they will need to navigate these changes. Additionally, CERIC has a special interest in understanding the value placed on and demand for the work of career professionals in Canada through this RFP.

This RFP invites interested researchers to submit a detailed proposal that will enable CERIC to select the research/consulting team that it determines is best suited to complete the project according to the enclosed criteria.

CERIC’s interest in this project is three-fold:

1. To develop an understanding of the macro factors that are redefining the changing workplace and career paths

  • A summary of existing work on how technology, social change and global issues are changing the workplace and career paths
  • Evolving definitions of the workplace and value of work
  • The impact of these factors on the changes to the concept of careers in the future, how traditional on-ramps into careers are being challenged or displaced by new notions of learning required to launch into new careers

2. To understand the role and identity of career developers

  • An understanding of the barriers and facilitators to forming an identity as career developers
  • An understanding of the current and future experience of career developers in their roles and how anticipated changes in the work environment will influence them
  • Comparison between the past, current and future understandings of the role and identities
  • Assessment of the professional development needs of career developers and factors that limit access to learning and skills development required for the coming world of work

3. To understand what services clients/students need and how career services need to adapt to meet these changing needs

  • A summary of evolving service modes and methods
  • An understanding of emergent competencies required by future-ready career developers
  • An assessment of gaps in skills required by career development professionals to meet the future needs of their clients

Deadlines for this RFP are as follows:

  • Request for Proposals Released: October 19, 2022
  • Intent to Submit: November 23, 2022 (submit name & contact info to riz@ceric.ca)
  • Proposal Deadline: December 21, 2022
  • Award of Contract: March 31, 2023
  • Project Initiation: May 1, 2023

To learn more about the Scope of Work, Target Audience, Deliverables, Budget and Duration, and Eligibility Requirements, please download the RFP. For any inquiries, please contact CERIC Executive Director Riz Ibrahim at riz@ceric.ca.


Toolkit showcases 10 ways employers can partner with career professionals to address talent needs

Today’s tight labour market requires new approaches and flexibility to attract talent with shifting jobseeker and employee expectations. A new toolkit from CERIC highlights 10 ways that career development professionals (CDPs) can partner with employers to meet their recruitment, retention and training needs. The toolkit was created by the CDPs who work with employers every day within their communities.

It is a compilation reflecting input from more than 100 CDPs with advice for helping to mobilize local labour markets. This resource is the result of Virtual Community Roundtables with career development professionals held this past June. Organized by CERIC, the roundtables were hosted in partnership with two provincial career development associations, ASPECT BC and the Ontario Association of Career Management.

During these roundtables, CDPs discussed with their peers the results of CERIC’s Environics National Business Survey of 500 Canadian employers released earlier this year. Discussions focused on five themes: Challenges for Canadian Businesses, Recruitment, Skills Gap, Soft Skills and Professional / Career Development.

The toolkit that emerged is intended to be a brief resource that conveys the most impactful approaches for CDPs to work with employers. Some of the 10 ways to partner range from #4 Find Untapped Talent Through Non-Traditional Hiring to #9 Focus on Employee Retention, Engagement and Wellness. CDPs can use this document to identify new or enhanced ways to support employers or can share it directly with employers.

The goal is to provide ideas and a tool to raise employer awareness of the value of career development and the role and services of career development professionals. The National Business Survey showed that while 53% of employers are aware of CDPs, only 12% have worked with one in the past.

Recognizing that the role and services vary by type of CDP, organization and sector (e.g., post-secondary institution vs. community agency vs. private practice), this document aims to be as inclusive and flexible as possible. Anyone is welcome to use or modify the content as part of their communications materials.

Building on this work, CERIC will host two more Virtual Community Roundtables this fall with the Career Development Association of Alberta (registration now open for the Nov. 2 Alberta roundtable) and with Ordre des conseillers et conseillères d’orientation du Québec (OCCOQ) (to be held Dec. 1 in Quebec.) The roundtables will continue this important conversation on employer engagement and the contribution of CDPs to workforce and workplace strategies. The employer toolkit will be updated to incorporate additional insights from CDPs in these other provinces.


Explore the 150+ sessions: Program now available for hybrid Cannexus23 conference

The Cannexus23 hybrid program has now been released for both the virtual edition and Ottawa-based in-person version of Canada’s largest Career Development Conference, taking place Jan. 23-25, 2023. The program includes more than 150 sessions that will keep participants current with the latest knowledge, skills and tools as well as help to sustain resilience after more than two years of the “new normal.”

Cannexus brings together professionals across the career and workforce development ecosystem to explore research, policy and practice. The conference will continue to reimagine the impact of career development on education, the economy and social justice as pandemic recovery unfolds. In the past, in-person Cannexus conferences have drawn more than 1,200 delegates to convene, share and learn, and the virtual conference has attracted more than 2,300 participants.

Incredible keynotes will inspire delegates: Indigenous diversity expert Dr. James Makokis, economist and futurist Linda Nazareth and Tareq Hadhad, the Syrian refugee and entrepreneur who founded Peace by Chocolate. Featuring top researchers, practitioners and thought leaders from across Canada and around the world (Candy Ho, Dr. Ken Keis, Gray Poehnell, Rich Feller, Sareena Hopkins, Lisa Taylor, Kris Magnusson, Sarah Delicate, Tannis Goddard, Graham Donald, JP Michel, Dave Redekopp and many more), here is just a sampling of the sessions on offer:

  • Career Development as a Lever for Poverty Reduction
  • Preparing Jobseekers for Virtual Work
  • What Employers Need from Career Development Professionals
  • Climate-aware Careers: Cultivating Hope
  • Build an Online Personal Brand for Counsellors
  • Future-proofing Students Through WIL
  • Adapting Skills for Success for Marginalized Groups
  • Post-Pandemic Interview Strategies
  • Youth Resurgence: Finding What Was Lost During COVID
  • The Future is Now: AI & Career Services
  • Catalyzing Change: Creating Access and Economic Mobility
  • What Color is Your Parachute and Beyond
  • Helping Clients Cope with Bias During Job Search
  • Finding Mental Health Opportunity Within Career Development Intervention
  • Labour Market Trends You Need to Know
  • KAIROS Blanket Exercise

CERIC is also partnering with the Future Skills Centre (FSC) to provide a dedicated half-day stream of programming called Future Skills @Cannexus as part of the in-person conference. At Cannexus23, Future Skills will showcase a varied program that highlights a vision for career guidance in Canada and delves deep into future trends and initiatives.

Included in both virtual and in-person registrations
  • Around the World special programming for global perspectives on career development: US, Europe and beyond
  • Keynotes on: Diversity and Unconsious Bias, The Redefined World of Work, and Resiliency through Adversity
  • Spark! sessions, our take on TedTalks that are intended to spark you to think differently about your work

Hybrid sessions act as bridges between the in-person and virtual conference, creating a shared Cannexus experience. In-person attendees also receive access to the virtual platform at the end of the conference. Both in-person and virtual attendees will have access to these recordings for six months.

Delegates can save by registering by the Early Bird deadline of Friday, Nov. 4. The cost during Early Bird is $330 for the virtual and $500 for the in-person conference. Members of groups of 5 or more save a further 25% off Early Bird rates as do members of 32 supporting organizations. 


CERIC ED Riz Ibrahim to become CEO of The Counselling Foundation of Canada

It has been announced that CERIC Executive Director Riz Ibrahim will be leaving CERIC to take on the position of President & CEO of The Counselling Foundation of Canada. He will succeed current Foundation leader Bruce Lawson in this role. The Foundation established CERIC and has been its primary funder. This transition is expected to take place in spring 2023. 

Concurrent with these announcements, Candy Ho, Chair of the CERIC Board, announced that there will be a national search for a new Executive Director (ED) to replace Ibrahim, who has been the ED of CERIC since its inception in 2003.   

 “While we are sad to lose Riz as ED, given the close relationship between the Foundation and CERIC, he won’t be far away,” says Ho. “Riz has played a pivotal role in the development of CERIC as the leading Canadian organization advancing education and research in career counselling and career development. A new ED will have a strong foundation to build upon.”  

As CERIC Executive Director, Ibrahim expanded the reach and scope of CERIC’s work by actively engaging stakeholders from a broad range of sectors within the career development ecosystem. Partnership, collaboration and inclusion have been at the core of CERIC’s growth and development. 

Notably, he created research and learning vehicles that have made CERIC a credible and non-partisan voice in career development in Canada. Most significantly, Ibrahim was instrumental in initiating and expanding Cannexus, Canada’s Career Development Conference, now in its 17th year, as the premiere learning and networking event for career development professionals in Canada. 

In the coming weeks, CERIC will launch its national search to recruit a new Executive Director.  

Read the full announcement. 


Fall 2022 issue of Canadian Journal of Career Development released

The newest edition of the Canadian Journal of Career Development (CJCD) has just been published to wrap up its 20th anniversary year. The current issue (Volume 22, Number 2) includes a range of timely research from priming jobs as skill development to artificial intelligence for résumé critiquing.


Academic Book Reviews

The Canadian Journal of Career Development (CJCD)  is a partnership between CERIC and Memorial University of Newfoundland with the support of The Counselling Foundation of Canada as well as the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. CJCD is published twice a year. It is free to subscribe to the digital editions and all issues of the open-access journal dating back to 2002 are available online. 


Award-winning career development leader Dr. Candy Ho becomes Chair of CERIC Board

CERIC is pleased to officially announce Candy Ho, EdD, as the new Chair of its Board of Directors for a two-year term. Ho, the inaugural Assistant Professor, Integrative Career and Capstone Learning in the University of the Fraser Valley in BC, will lead the Board in delivering on CERIC’s mission to advance career development in Canada. A national charitable organization, CERIC has two strategic mandates: promoting career development as a priority for the public good, and building career development knowledge, mindsets and competencies. 


Announcing fall webinars October-November 2022: Real-World Resume Strategy, Motivation at Work, and Reflective Practice

CERIC will be offering three new webinar series on its fall calendar. The first series will help career practitioners to understand the foundation of strategic resume development. The second series will address clients’ motivation and how they can develop skills to remain energetic, enthusiastic and effective. The third series will guide career development professionals on effectively integrating reflective practice into experiential learning.

Today’s employment market demands a new standard for resumes that a template cannot deliver. Strategic resume development is vital for career professionals to provide customized and valuable support, address individual client backgrounds, objectives and needs, and help their clients meet their goals.

This webinar series will introduce participants to techniques that leading Canadian professional resume writers use to attract employer attention, appeal to hiring managers, deal with barriers, and optimize for ATS (applicant tracking systems).

Motivation is the most important driver behind achieving goals. If someone is not motivated, they achieve very little – or nothing at all. Developing the skills to motivate others is not a mysterious game of chance – rather, new research from the field of psychology reveals how we can help others to work more enthusiastically towards their goals and remain focused even when obstacles appear.

These webinars offer a range of valuable tools for professionals to pass along to clients in their career development journey. Participants will engage in a rich and varied learning experience with the opportunity to test their knowledge in the third and final webinar of the series through small group exercises.

With increasing investment in and expansion of Experiential and Work Integrated Learning programs, you want to ensure the most successful outcomes. But one of the stickiest challenges remains how to integrate quality Reflective Practice to help learners make meaning of their experience, and better translate their learning to their next steps in work or learning.

This series will move participants from Reflective Practice theory to evaluating specific resources that unlock Career Development’s value within Experiential and Work-Integrated Learning programs.

Registered participants in all the series will receive a video recording of each session. Individual certificates of attendance will be provided to all registered participants who attend the webinars live.

CERIC’s paid webinars are now hosted via the Zoom events platform to provide more interactive learning and networking opportunities. Participants will have access to a lobby where they can interact with other participants before, between and after the sessions, as well as many interaction options during the live webinars. An FAQ answers any technical questions.

CERIC partners with associations and organizations across Canada and beyond to present webinars that offer affordable professional development. Previously, CERIC has also worked with the Association of Service Providers for Employability and Career Training BCAssociation québécoise des professionnels du développement de carrière, , Canadian Association of Career Educators and Employers, Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association,  Career Development Association of AlbertaExperiential and Work-Integrated Learning OntarioFirst Work, Labour Market Information Council , New Brunswick Career Development AssociationNova Scotia Career Development AssociationOntario Association of Career Management, Ontario School Counsellors’ Association,  Ordre des conseillers et conseillères d’orientation du Québec, Vocational Rehabilitation Association (Canada),  and the US-based National Career Development Association.







Project to map Canada’s career services landscape awarded to Challenge Factory and CCDF

CERIC has selected Challenge Factory in partnership with the Canadian Career Development Foundation (CCDF) to take on a project that will scope out who is providing career services where across Canada, producing insights that can influence the future of the field. This project will demonstrate the breadth and depth of support that Canadians receive from this sometimes-hidden sector as we all navigate a changing labour market. The career development sector can be critical leaders over the next 10 years, shaping the future of work, employment, education, purpose and community. 

Canada currently lacks basic comprehensive data on the overall size, scope and composition of its career development sector. Having this valid and credible information is necessary to inform the field itself as well as policymakers – and Canadians broadly – as to the makeup of this varied group of professionals. Scoping the career development landscape will increase the core intelligence available to the sector to address a range of work related to determining the socio-economic impact of career development, understanding career professionals’ learning needs, and advocating for public awareness and recognition of the value of career development. 

Challenge Factory and CCDF bring deep expertise in research and the Canadian career development sector to this Scoping the Canadian Career Development Landscape project. Challenge Factory is a workforce development research agency and consultancy that helps purpose-driven organizations and communities shape the future of work, bringing transformative change to their people and workplaces. CCDF is a non-profit centre of excellence and innovation committed to ensuring every Canadian can be successful in their learning, work and career transitions, and to that end, conducts rigorous research to strengthen the evidence base.  

This project emerged from a Request for Proposal (RFP) that CERIC issued earlier in the year to undertake first-of-its-kind market research about the field. The purpose is to make the field more visible by answering fundamental questions around how many professionals are practising career development in some form in the country. As part of gaining a full picture of the career development landscape, the project will also seek to identify select high-level outcome measures that flow from the delivery of career services. Additionally, the research will consider the state of Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Indigeneity (EDII) among career professionals in Canada and whether those providing career development services reflect learners and clients they serve.  

To date, research about the landscape of career development in Canada has been patchwork in nature and not produced reliable baseline date. This new mapping effort will create an up-to-date snapshot of the field by consolidating and leveraging information sources that already exist, then filling in the gaps using targeted primary data collection. Stakeholder engagement and collaboration throughout the project is planned to ensure incorporation of a diversity of sector-wide perspectives, knowledge and expertise.  

A key output of this project will be the development and testing of a “Scoping Model” that will provide a foundational evidence base about the structure of the pan-Canadian field. It will include insights and recommendations that will be of use to professional associations, educational institutions and employers who provide leadership and support to the field, and government policymakers who work on related policies, programs and funding. 

The findings of the project will be known by the beginning of 2024.


Survey reveals learning preferences of Canada’s career development professionals

As career professionals juggle full workloads and pandemic-related challenges, a majority say cost and time are major factors driving their decisions about what type of professional development they engage in.  

This was among the results of CERIC’s 2022 Content & Learning Survey of Career Development Professionals*, which surveyed 644 people working in the career development field about their learning needs, preferences and behaviours in May 2022.  

The survey found 44% of career development professionals (CDPs) spend between 1 and 3 hours monthly on formal and informal professional development. Nearly one-third (28%) of respondents have less than $500 to spend on professional development annually (including money provided by their employer as well as personal spending), while 19% have no budget for learning.  

While the lifting of pandemic restrictions has enabled people to gather in person more easily, career professionals aren’t ready to walk away from the accessibility of online learning. The survey results show over half of CDPs plan to maintain their level of participation in virtual conferences, workshops and webinars. However, 46% plan to increase their attendance at in-person conferences over the next two years, suggesting that offering learning in a variety of formats will be key to meeting learner needs.  

Among the other findings: 

  • 51% of respondents say they would be most likely to use Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) as a source of learning, compared with micro-credentials (37%) and paid, formal courses (13%) 
  • 22% use online learning platforms such as LinkedIn Learning, Udemy and Coursera most frequently as a source of learning 
  • The top 3 issues, topics or themes CDPs want to learn about to support their work are: labour market information, counselling/coaching practices and mental health. Many also identified topics connected to equity, diversity and inclusion.  

Visit the Content & Learning Survey page for a PowerPoint with detailed results on professional development and respondent demographics, as well as an infographic highlighting key results.   

*The 2022 Content & Learning Survey of Career Development Professionals was open online from May 11-25, 2022. 


Experience the Cannexus23 conference your way with registration now open

The 2023 Cannexus Career Development Conference – to be held as a hybrid event for the first time – is now open for registration. This dual format for the 17th annual conference will offer the best of both worlds, providing an accessible, content-rich and value-packed opportunity for Canada’s career development communities to convene, share and learn. Canada’s largest bilingual career development conference, Cannexus23 will take place Jan. 23-25, 2023, both virtually and in Ottawa, Canada. 

Cannexus brings together professionals across the career and workforce development ecosystem to explore research, policy and practice. The conference will examine the big-picture impact of career development on education, the economy and social justice as well as offer skills-building content. Participants will share innovative approaches and exchange information with peers. In the past, in-person Cannexus conferences have drawn more than 1,200 delegates and virtual conferences more than 2,300 attendees.   

The Cannexus schedule for both the in-person and virtual portions is available with the full program to be posted by the end of September. Programming will cover current and emerging hot topics in career development, including: the future of work and workplaces, building mental health and resilience, and post-COVID labour market trends. Whether part of the in-person version or the virtual conference, delegates will be able to access:  

  • 150+ sessions both live and on-demand 
  • Presenters from across Canada and around the globe 
  • Networking opportunities 
  • Partners showcasing their products and services 
  • Recordings that are available for six months 

This instalment of Cannexus will again offer special Gratitude rates plus deep discounts for groups, students and members of supporting organizations. There are also bursaries available to support individuals in attending the virtual portion of the conference. The Marilyn Van Norman Bursary will be awarded to 13 applicants from community-based organizations. Additionally, the Young Professionals Bursary will support 12 emerging practitioners to attend, with preference given to those from equity-seeking groups. Application deadlines areSeptember 30, 2022. For the first time this year, the Asia Pacific Career Development Association will also be offering scholarships to participate at Cannexus23. 

Cannexus is presented by CERIC and supported by The Counselling Foundation of Canada and a broad network of partners. For more information on the conference and to register by the Sept. 9 Gratitude deadline, visit cannexus.ceric.ca.