The Survey


In the spring of 2021, an online survey was completed by 674 business representatives within Alberta.

How we’ll use our findings

  • Broaden and deepen the evidence the ACC and local chambers can bring forward to articulate the perspectives of the province’s business community
  • Understand the reality faced by our business community
  • Make the research available to individual chambers

Key Findings

  • Businesses are feeling more positive about the long-term future of the province.
  • The people and technical skill sets that businesses look for when hiring tend to be quite basic and straightforward. 
  • Lack of people skills, lack of technical skills, and lack of applicants are the top cited barriers for recruiting the skills businesses need. 
  • There continues to be a high level of willingness to work with post-secondary institutions (public or private) or provide Work Integrated Learning (WIL) to recruit or acquire skilled workers.
  • Consistent with previous results, almost six in ten businesses that have had difficulty hiring people with the skills they need have either invested in capital equipment/other technologies (38%) or would consider this (19%) to overcome skills shortages.


  • Businesses continue to report they are finding it difficult to hire people with either the entry-level or mid-level skills they need to manage their business. 
  • However, while industry-specific technical skills are needed by many businesses, this is where the largest skills shortages are expected over the next three years.
  • Among businesses that have found it difficult to hire people with the required entry or mid-level skills, 60% report they have undertaken training.
  • There also continues to be a high level of interest in working with chambers of commerce to connect with and recruit skilled workers.