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.  


New issue marks the 20th anniversary of the Canadian Journal of Career Development

The latest edition of the Canadian Journal of Career Development (CJCD) kicks off its 20th anniversary year. CJCD (Volume 1, Number 1) was launched as Canada’s only peer-reviewed academic journal at the National Consultation on Career Development conference in 2002. Since then, the journal has gone on to publish 40 issues with articles from more than 350 contributors, and to gain more than 10,000 readers. As Founding Editor Rob Shea describes in From the Editor’s Desk, “It truly has been a ‘field of dreams’ experience.” 

The current issue (Volume 21, Number 1) includes a range of timely research from a needs assessment of virtual career practitioners to systemic issues in helping marginalized populations to well-being in the Canadian workplace. 


Research in Motion

Graduate Student Research Briefs 

The Canadian Journal of Career Development 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. 


Winter issue of Careering magazine shines a light on career mindsets

In this issue of Careering, we explore the many facets of Career Mindsets. Without a singular definition of this term in Canada’s career development field, we left the door open for interpretation. The result was fascinating.

Authors connected the theme to art, exploration, social mentalities, limiting beliefs, fixed and growth mindsets, design thinking and return to work. They shared how they use career mindsets to support students, from the early grades through to graduate school; newcomers to Canada and to the career development field; and jobseekers across all stages of their career.  

Articles include:   

Careering magazine is Canada’s Magazine for Career Development Professionals and is the official publication of CERIC. It is published three times a year and includes select content in French. Subscribe to receive your free copy. You can also access past issues for free online.  

The theme for the Spring-Summer 2022 issue of Careering magazine will be released later in February. Check back on ceric.ca/careering for the call for article proposals or sign up for CERIC’s free CareerWise Weekly newsletter to get the latest updates.


The Great Reshuffle: Canadian study reveals 81 per cent of Canadian executives having difficulty filling positions and confirm industry-wide skills gap

CERIC uncovers keen insights on top challenges Canadian businesses face during ever-evolving pandemic and how career development can increase Canada’s economic growth

TORONTO, ON (January 25, 2022) — There is a vaccine to champion recruitment and retention in the wake of “The Great Reshuffle.” It’s called career development.

A national survey [i] recently conducted by Environics for CERIC — a Canadian charitable organization that advances education and research in career counselling and career development — reveals that the majority of Canadian executives (81 per cent) are having difficulty finding people with the right skill set to fill positions and 78 per cent agree there is a skills gap in their respective industry.

“The ongoing pandemic and underlying economic uncertainty have Canadian executives experiencing significant difficulties and pain points including recruiting, hiring and retaining talent,” says André Raymond, CRHA, Laval University and Chair of the Board of Directors, CERIC. “Canadian businesses can play a significant role in addressing these shifting labour challenges by investing in career development that will address the skills shortage, contribute to economic growth and demonstrate their commitment to build a strong future skilled workforce.”

CERIC surveyed 500 Canadian executives in more than 11 industries including service, retail, hospitality, construction and manufacturing. The survey reveals keen insights into Canadian organizations’ current views on skills and talent gaps in the labour market; hiring underrepresented groups as part of equity, diversity and inclusion strategies; and the importance of investing in career development. The survey also provides comparability to CERIC’s 2013 survey to track differences within the past eight years.

Top Challenges for Canadian Businesses

Since 2013, executives are less concerned about the state of the economy, regulation & red tape and keeping up with technology. In this fluid pandemic landscape and underlying uncertainty, the challenge of finding young & skilled talent has increased in the past eight years. The top five challenges faced by employers are:

  1. A shortage of skilled workers (75 per cent vs 68 per cent in 2013)
  2. Finding young workers (66 per cent vs 51 per cent in 2013)
  3. Supply chain issues (70 per cent)
  4. General state of the economy (69 per cent vs 77 per cent in 2013)
  5. Regulation and red tape (52 per cent vs 63 per cent in 2013)

While employers in Ontario were the least likely to experience a shortage of skilled workers in 2013, they are now the most likely (81 per cent in 2021 vs 59 per cent in 2013), followed by executives in Quebec (76 per cent vs 77 per cent in 2013) and the Prairies (76 per cent vs 69 per cent in 2013).

Recruiting & Retaining Talent

Eighty-one per cent of Canadian executives are having difficulty finding people with the right skill set to fill positions in their companies — up from 70 per cent in 2013. Additional difficulties include:

  • Finding reliable candidates with the right work ethic (29 per cent)
  • Competitive job market in their respective industry (23 per cent)

While the importance of resumes has not deviated significantly since 2013, executives are finding a potential employee’s online footprint to be increasingly important (63 per cent vs 52 per cent in 2013).

Despite the growing importance of equity, diversity and inclusion, there has been a modest increase in the proportion of executives putting effort into customizing their recruitment approaches to attract and reach members of underrepresented groups (51 per cent vs 46 per cent in 2013).

“Compared to the pre-pandemic era, Canadian executives are now facing increased competition to recruit talent and one-third of executives find retaining employees to be more difficult compared to two years ago,” says Candy Ho, inaugural Assistant Professor, Integrative Career and Capstone Learning, University of the Fraser Valley and Vice-Chair, CERIC. “To compete, it’s imperative for employers to take strategic actions and find ways to differentiate the value proposition they offer to current and prospective workers.”

“Career development is an essential strategy for recruiting, developing and retaining productive and satisfied employees,” adds Ho. “This approach can address major challenges that employers face today. From finding underrepresented talent to providing career coaching to employees, companies can positively build a stronger workforce and contribute to Canada’s economic growth.”

Take a Hard Look at Soft Skills

Executives who have experienced more difficulty in employee retention (72 per cent) more often identify a skills gap in their industry (42 per cent) and are finding it increasingly more difficult to recruit people with the soft skills they deem important (40 per cent). While positive attitude and good communication skills continue to be seen as the two most important soft skills for prospective employers, the importance of reliability and dependability has increased by more than 100 per cent:

  1. Positive attitude (29 per cent vs 36 per cent in 2013)
  2. Communication skills (22 per cent vs 29 per cent in 2013)
  3. Reliability and dependability (21 per cent vs 9 per cent in 2013)
  4. Strong work ethic (18 per cent vs 23 per cent in 2013)
  5. Teamwork skills (16 per cent vs 25 per cent in 2013)

Many career development experts suggest soft skills are gaining the upper hand over hard skills. Occupations requiring good social skills are becoming more common and have even been described as critical for the future of work. The survey revealed executives are most likely to hire someone with soft skills who is a good fit and provide training (78 per cent).

The federal government has also taken action to prioritize soft skills with Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) looking at ways of improving the Essential Skills Framework. In 2021, they released the Skills for Success [ii] which includes communication; creativity & innovation; problem solving; and adaptability, to name a few.

“Employers are increasingly looking for candidates with hybrid skills, which are a combination of soft and hard skills,” says Ho. “Canadians have the opportunity to develop and implement skills that might set them apart from other candidates. These new skills will also make them more effective at their current jobs and let them quickly adapt to changing industries and apply their skills and talents toward a fulfilling career.”

Investing in Career Development to Close the Skills Gap

While 73 per cent agree employers have a responsibility to provide career management programs for employees, only 27 per cent provide these programs and 45 per cent were unaware of career development professionals before this survey.

“Canadian executives have the unique opportunity to help Canadians take charge of their career by investing in development strategies that help employees identify personal strengths and clarify career goals that can positively contribute to job satisfaction,” says Raymond. “Working with a career professional can support organizations to build strategies that meet company needs and improve employee engagement, which ultimately leads to increased productivity, positive relationships, job clarity and a supportive work environment.”

Cannexus Conference – January 24-26, 2022

The findings from this Canadian survey were released during an industry expert panel discussion at Cannexus, Canada’s largest bilingual career development conference. More than 1,700 career development professionals participated in this virtual conference that included more than 150 sessions on the latest research, policy and practices in career and workforce development.


CERIC is a charitable organization that advances education and research in career counselling and career development, in order to increase the economic and social well-being of Canadians. It funds projects to develop innovative resources that build the knowledge and skills of diverse career professionals; annually hosts Cannexus; and publishes the country’s only peer-reviewed academic journal in the field, Canadian Journal of Career Development. For more information, visit www.ceric.ca

To arrange an interview with a CERIC board member and industry expert or for more information, please contact: Sonia Prashar or Bronlynn Carrington at spPR Inc. soniaprashar@sppublicrelations.com I bronlynncarrington@sppublicrelations.com

[i] From November 18 – December 17, 2021, Environics conducted a national telephone survey among 501 randomly selected Canadian businesses. Interviews were conducted with senior level employees with awareness of, and responsibility for hiring, training and career development within the organization. Quotas were monitored to ensure that a minimum number of interviews were conducted within each region of Canada. The sample was designed to conduct interviews with senior staff of businesses across Canada, of various sizes, location (urban, rural and suburban), and industries. The margin of error is ± 4.4 percentage points, at the standard 95% confidence level.

[ii] https://careerwise.ceric.ca/2021/06/28/what-you-need-to-know-about-canadas-new-skills-for-success-framework/#.YdiPK2jMLIU

Webinar Series: Self-Employed Career Practitioners: Tools and Strategies to Better Manage Your Finances

Date: Thursdays, May 20, 27, June 3, 2021

Presenter: Pamela George

Cost: Full Series VRA-Member: $119 | Full Series Non VRA-Member: $159

All registered participants will receive a password-protected video recording of each session. Recordings will remain available for ONE MONTH after the final webinar of the series.

Individual certificates of attendance will be provided to all registered participants who attend the webinars LIVE.


Often career practitioners, like many Canadians, have very little understanding of finances, how credit works, and of the potential impact on their financial well-being. While we see a shift in our practice and in the workforce with more and more people self-employed, it becomes more important, especially in light of the current pandemic, to educate ourselves, and the clients we serve, on financial literacy. This new webinar series will help career practitioners who are self-employed to enhance their learning on current personal financial management practices.

Webinar #1: How to Set up and Organize Your Finances for Success
Thursday, May 20, 2021 | 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm ET

  • How to plan for irregular income
  • How to pay yourself a consistent salary
  • How to manage taxes
  • Banking: accounts for the self-employed
  • Build a business budget

Participants will learn how to plan for those months when income is low, but expenses remain the same or increase.

Webinar #2: BUDGETING – How to Build a Personal Budget
Thursday, May 27, 2021 | 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm ET

  • Learn the relevance and importance of a balanced budget and its place in managing your finances
  • Learn the 5 major categories that need to be in your budget and how much of your income needs to be allocated to each category
  • Build your own budget using a customized template

For this webinar, participants will be required to know their estimated income and personal expenses, and have a calculator, pen and paper.

Webinar #3: Type of Savings and How to Pay off Debts
Thursday, June 3, 2021 | 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm ET

  • Learn the different types of savings and its relevance to successful financial management
  • Learn the 7 ways to pay off debts and how to determine which one is best for you
  • Understand how retirement is different for the self-employed and why you need to plan differently
  • Understand the importance of wealth protection

Participants will learn how to save for financial success and also learn the many ways that they can pay off debt and how to determine which one is best for them. 

Throughout her career, Pamela George has been steadfastly committed to one overarching goal: To educate and empower Canadians, so they may regain control of their finances and start living the life they want. Whether she is counselling individuals, couples, families, solopreneurs, entrepreneurs or groups, Pamela has successfully helped thousands of people pay off debt, build budgets and save for the future so they can start living their dreams.


CERIC pulse survey2020

CERIC Recovery Pulse Survey spotlights resilience and innovation in Canada’s career services

Despite vast and ongoing challenges presented by the current global pandemic, Canada’s career and employment services are showing remarkable resilience and innovation as they reimagine their work. By leveraging technology, 89% are reporting they are delivering programs and services remotely, introducing novel approaches to meet student, client and employer needs. These findings come from the new CERIC Recovery Pulse Survey, which gathered input on the impact of COVID-19 on career services across the country as we move into a recovery period. A total of 1,146 career development professionals responded to the survey between June 4 and 12.

Using videoconferencing in addition to phone, email and chat to support clients has now become standard. Some of the other ways that career and employment services are enhancing their offerings include: creating videos and podcasts to deliver remote job search guidance, developing programming for Instagram and YouTube, offering virtual career fairs, hosting Twitter chats, preparing clients for digital interviews, working with employers to secure opportunities for students to do virtual placements and even buying tablets for clients to offset access issues. There is recognition that remote service delivery can be difficult for some vulnerable populations, but career professionals highlighted that it can also increase access, improve digital literacy and strengthen adaptability.

CERIC pulse survey

Click the image to see the full infographic

Comments about the transformation of career services include:

  • “It has forced us to review what we offer and how we offer it and to make it more streamlined and relevant.”
  • “An opportunity for clients to really take the time to research and determine a career change or career path.”
  • “Partnering with other service providers to offer remote advice, webinars and online information that they previously needed to do in-house.”
  • “In an attempt to understand the ‘new normal,’ I have been challenged to be more creative, more empathetic and broad-thinking in my approach to everything.”
  • “Offering more services remotely in future – expand our geographic territory, more accessible to those with transportation or mobility or childcare challenges.”
  • “Tapping into clients’ resilience to face challenges and foster flexibility in their job search.”

However, current realities are presenting very real challenges to the viability of many organizations with nearly a quarter (23.7%) reporting they have had to reduce or close programs and services; 1 in 5 have had to lay off staff or reduce staff hours. Meanwhile, 17.2% of respondents report increased demand for their services from students and clients, and 1 in 5 organizations have been able to develop new partnerships and initiatives. The future remains uncertain: more than half of respondents (54.1%) expect to be open six months from now with limited impact on their operations, while 21.9% anticipate they will be able to grow their services.

Overall, career development professionals reported that among their students and clients, 83.9% see this time period as a stressor and only 16.1% as an opportunity. They indicate that clients with mental health challenges are among the groups most negatively affected, followed by unemployed and low-income individuals. Among respondents, 44.1% say their clients are only somewhat or poorly equipped to handle the mental health impact of the situation.

With the goal of this survey to gather vital intelligence around the changing state of the career development field in Canada during the recovery, there are plans to repeat the Pulse Survey again at the end of the summer and during the fall to track changes over time. Results will continue to show shifts in how career services are being reimagined and tell the story of the public good that career and employment professionals offer in this period of massive workforce upheaval.


What’s New


Contact Point Launches its 2004 Survey!

As practitioners in this fast paced, ever changing field of career development, we focus most of our attention on those we provide services to, and rarely have the chance to step back and reflect on our field. Here is an opportunity for you to do just that. Share your thoughts and voice your concerns on the field, the changes unfolding, the challenges that impact you, and how you see the future.

Let us know how Contact Point can continue to provide you with the information and support you need to do your job better in light of these changes. Your input is extremely important to our understanding of current and emerging needs in the field, and how best we can respond to them. Please take the time to fill in the questionnaire below. It may up to 20 minutes to complete, depending on your responses, but be assured your feedback is vital

The survey opens on November 1, 2004 and will run for approximately 4 weeks.

Watch for summary results in the Winter issue of the Contact Point Bulletin, due in January 2005.

Don’t miss your chance to win some great prizes!

Everyone who completes the survey will have their names entered into a draw to win 1 of 40 copies of the book called “So…tell me about yourself” A Guide to Successful Interviews published by Canadian Career Partners.

Be among the first 100 people to complete the survey and have your name entered into a draw to win 1 of 3 Mentoring Resource Series sets published by Les Éditions de la Fondation de l’entrepreneurship. This set contains Mentoring and the World of Work in Canada: Source Book of Best Practices and 5 Mentoring Resource Series guides.



To complete the survey, click on the link below.

Contact Point Survey



What’s New


Launched at the National Consultation on Career Development (NATCON) Conference in January 1997, Contact Point, funded by The Counselling Foundation of Canada, is the first Canadian site dedicated to providing on-line information to counsellors and practitioners across the country ­ a significant departure from sites that cater to the needs of the general public. A multi-sector approach makes Contact Point that much more unique in the Canadian on-line arena, with a board of directors comprised of counsellors and practitioners from both institutional and non-institutional settings, including professionals in the private, government and not-for-profit sectors. Contact Point relies wholly on private-sector funding for its development and operation. Our commitment remains to provide site access to users at no cost. It’s free!

Contact Point aims to:

  • promote and support the effective delivery of career and employment counselling and the career development process
  • encourage and support the dissemination of career and employment counselling information
  • foster the development of an interactive and mutually supportive virtual community of career and employment counsellors and career development practitioners
  • enhance community awareness of career development issues

Contact Point fosters the development of a Canadian multi-sector community on the Internet, examining common resource and professional development needs and providing a space for intra-community interaction, whether it be among counsellors/practitioners or between representative organizations.

How can you get involved?

The Contact Point site is the result of the participation of counsellors and practitioners from across Canada, doing everything from providing input on content to participating in the site’s formative testing. They continue to build the site daily.

You too can participate by suggesting items for the Resource Centre; telling us about sites you’ve encountered during your Web adventures; listing conferences or courses; sharing your course or workshop experiences; participating in one of the sites on-going development focus groups; initiating and participating in a discussion group; submitting an article for the Bulletin ­ the list is virtually endless!


What’s New

There have been many changes to the Contact Point site since the previous issue of the Bulletin was released. In fact, new information is added weekly to the site.

We have been adding new agency and organizational listings to our on-line Registry. This is a sure to be a staple for on-line networking and referrals. Are you listed?

Visit the Professional Development section at Contact Point, and you will find more PD opportunities, including a Workshop Calandar, Courses and Programs at the College and University level, and additional Conferences.

We have added new links to our Other Websites section. Don’t forget to check out the links in our Fun Sites section, including a greeting card sender, the Keirsey Temperament Sorter, an on-line employment search readiness inventory and an on-line career game based on Holland Codes.

We have added new Discussion Group topics and hope you will actively participate in them. If you would like to initiate a discussion group, let us know.

…and of course, we have launched this Fall Edition of the newsletter.

Visit the Website News section of the Contact Point site, and stay abreast of changes as they happen.



What’s New



  • We’ve changed the navigation in our Discussion Groups. Ask questions and share your expertise and knowledge with other practitioners across Canada – have you checked your favourite discussion lately?
  • Subscription to the free Contact Point Bulletin now also includes subscription to the Contact Point Flash!, our new monthly e-circular with book reviews, job ads, journal article abstracts, discussion of the month, and more. Stay abreast of news and changes in the profession. The Bulletin and Flash! can be found in the Counsellors’ News section of Contact Point.